Last Saturday was the Riverside White Cross nursing class of 1971 reunion luncheon and I'm so glad I chose to attend. There were 34 of us present, from a class of 61. Some of us hadn't seen each other for 45 years, which is still hard to embrace. From Columbus, I moved to Dayton, Ohio immediately after graduation and only had contact with two of my former classmates through the years, and those encounters were brief. If not for Facebook, and some of our determined classmates, I doubt we would have reconnected at all. We wondered why we hadn't known of the RWC luncheons that had been held through the years, but the reason became clear when we were told Riverside Hospital had lost all of our contact information. Much of it wouldn't have been accurate anyway, due to marriages, moves, and career changes. We had to remember all those records were on paper - no computers back then.
It was affirming to realize that almost all my former classmates had experienced feelings of insecurity and concerns about passing courses (as I did) while we were in training, but I hadn't known about that until Saturday when we were sharing and catching up on each others' lives. Each of us expressed that she'd thought she was the only one to have felt that way. I also learned that each of us who had gone home for the weekends dreaded Sunday nights when we'd be driven back to the dorm. Then it was back to the work in the hospital, classrooms, and labs. For me, Sunday night also meant donning a lab coat and walking over to the hospital to my assigned floor for the coming week. I needed to look through charts and write down my patients' medication lists. I'd then have to research any and all side effects, adverse reactions, and reasons for administration. I'd be tested during my floor experience that week. Even though it's been many years since those days, I sometimes still think of how my Sunday nights used to be spent and I recall those long study sessions. Medication lists were just the tip of the iceberg . . .