Last weekend I finally took my Anesthesia Board Exam. I had been studying for close to 2 weeks straight, and was SO ready to get it over with. My sweet husband was helping me study almost the whole week before, including taking a packet of practice questions with us to Oregano's on Saturday night for dinner and quizzing me all through dinner. I love when he helps me study because he often doesn't know how to pronounce half the words, and even if he does, he usually makes some random hilarious joke about the material that I could never forget.
Friday night we drove to Mesa after leaving our dogs with Dan's brothers for the night. (They came for a spring training game and took care of our dogs for the night) I wanted to keep studying that whole night, but I didn't really know what else to study. I felt good about all the material I had studied and felt like I knew it pretty well. But I just felt like the night before a huge exam I should still be studying. Dan was good at keeping my mind off of it and talking to me about other things like spring break that I was excited to get to.
I had come down with a cold the week before, of course, and had an extremely stuffed nose and a slight cough. I had called in sick to school 2 days that week in hopes of resting enough to get over the cold before the test. Unfortunately, it didn't work as well as I had hoped...
I hardly slept at all Friday night, between the nerves, running through all the material I had studied, not being able to breath through my nose, which meant sleeping with my mouth open (which I hate more than most other things), and my queezy stomach. I think the amount of sleep I got the night before amounted to about and hour and a half. I finally got up at 6 am on Saturday and got all ready to go. We left around 7:30, and drove to downtown Phoenix to the Hygiene clinic at Rio Salado.
The test was at 8:30 am. 55 multiple choice questions, and I had 60 minutes. I opened the test to the first page, and immediately thought "oh no, I'm done for"... Good thing I think they put the 4 hardest questions on the first page. I skipped the first page and went onto the rest of the test. I finished the entire exam with about 15 minutes to spare. I was actually the first one done, but didn't want to be the first to get up and turn it in. So I checked, and double checked, and triple checked my answers until one other girl got up to turn her test in.
I came out and waited for the results...As some of the other girls started filing out, I could hear a lot of them saying "that was so much worse than I thought it was going to be!" I hoped I wasn't just over-confident, and wondered why I thought it was overall a fair exam and was over exactly what I had studied, just not as in depth.
The results came out about 10 minutes later...The examiner brought out the stack of white envelopes with each person's results and sat them in basket. Most of us just sat there, almost too afraid to get up and look at the results. After a few seconds, I got up and found my envelope...
I had passed the written exam and could move onto the clinical portion that afternoon!
I was so relieved! I knew that the written was the more difficult part and that if I could get through that part, I would be ok.
Dan came back and picked me up, and we went to eat lunch and share the good news of my passing before we had to be back for the clinical at 2 pm.
Dan, his mom (my back-up patient in case I failed the first set of injections) and I arrived back at the clinic at about 1:45 pm. I was sitting in the waiting area filling out my paperwork, when they called my number. I scrambled to get my things together and head into the clinic to set up my operatory. I brought my good husband back into the chair and got him all ready.
*Side Note: Dan volunteered to be my patient for my anesthesia board exam. He knew it involved getting 2 shots in his mouth for no reason other than for me to be tested on it, but he agreed to do it anyway. What a wonderful man I married*
The 2 examiners came over and I gave the 2 injections as practiced. After a minute of talking, they instructed me to dismiss my patient. I knew then that I had either passed both injections and could go home, or I would have to bring my mother in law back for a 2nd attempt at the injection I failed.
I cleaned up my operatory and walked out to the waiting area to find my envelope, the same as that morning, with my results from the clinical exam...
I PASSED and was ANESTHESIA CERTIFIED!!!
It was such a relief to have it all over with and know that all my studying and sleepless nights over the previous couple of weeks had paid off. I was and still am so grateful to Dan for all his love and support in helping me prepare and for allowing me to use him as my patient.
I could finally relax and enjoy my Spring Break!
(A few of the girls from my class and I after a long, but successful day!)