Elizabeth McCormick

I survived ACLS

“Your patient is a 58 year old male presenting with chest pain 8/10, pulse is 190, BP 80/70 and respirations 20,” the instructor said. “Suddenly he snorts and collapses; you see this rhythm. What do you want to do?” I swallowed and looked down at the greyish plastic face of the mannequin and watched as little black lines squiggled their way across the EKG monitor with an impending sense of doom. Somebody call a code, … Read More

Lessons from Charlotte

One of my favorite stories is EB White‘s Charlotte’s Web. I found myself reading it again recently and even though I know how it ends, I find myself crying every time. By the standards of nursing school, I realize Charlotte’s Web is not tough academic stuff. In that moment, however, my brain enjoyed a break from the rice cakes of professional literature to savor the mind candy of a good book. Charlotte’s Web isn’t really … Read More

A nurse in patient clothing

Nursing students make terrible patients. More specifically, I make a terrible patient.  In my role as a student nurse I am an advocate, a supporter, and a teacher.  This summer, however, the tables got turned and I got the opportunity to be on the other side of the bed-rail.  Being a patient is a familiar role for me, but it is one I do not easily adjust to. As a patient, I got to view … Read More

Lessons from camp

Recently I had the opportunity to volunteer with Camp M.D., a week-long camp sponsored by Southern Oregon University for young students interested in healthcare careers. OHSU SON Ashland participates with this by being mentors and using our skills lab for a two day simulation enabling the students to learn about nursing. Campers are given hands on practice after being taught the basics of priming lines, spiking bags, and setting an IV. I’ll admit I signed … Read More

Shakespeare on nursing

The other day a friend of mine asked me about graduation. I’ve been counting down to graduation since September of 2010. Yet, in that moment, it hit me that my classmates and I are now  incoming seniors. The expected flood of excitement and exhilaration I might have felt in that moment suddenly flew like a lead balloon. Oh… my…word. I am a senior?!!! Nope, check the records again please, because there is no way in … Read More

The technological life of a nursing student

I time traveled to the past the other day. No, really. For a total of 48 hours I was completely without my Smartphone and access to my laptop. I actually had to start this blog with pen and paper, how totally retro is that?  In the incurring frustration of not being able to check Facebook for the latest updates, I began to go a little stir crazy. I went out and stared at my garden. … Read More

The wisdom in perspective gained

“It’s a shame that youth is wasted on the young.”  I heard that phrase often growing up. It was one of my grandfather’s favorite things to say. I remember at 15 feeling indignant that he had so little regard for the talents of my generation. From my perspective, he had always been old, so how could he possibly understand the miraculous inventions of the 1990’s and the youth that would revolutionize the world as he … Read More

Spring fever

There is a bird building a nest in the birdhouse outside. I know this because I have watched him single handedly destroy two hanging baskets and borrow several silk flowers from the wreath on the door. With all of this to watch, who has time for study?  Spring does this to me every year. I find myself so enthralled with the arrival of sunshine and life that my coursework begins to feel like those winter … Read More

On the road again…

I have always said if nursing doesn’t work out for me I am going to be a long haul trucker. Ok, go ahead and laugh, but know that I am only partially kidding about this. The idea of experiencing the country via the open highway and meeting all kinds of people from all walks of life excites me. As I traveled from Oregon to Arizona with my family over spring break, my love of the … Read More

A machine full of pearls

It’s always been sort of fun for me to find out what ends up at the bottom of a washing machine. The treasure trove of lost coins, pen caps, and various papers and gadgets over the years has evolved and evidenced the tales of my week. As my interests and career paths have developed , so has the range of random findings. To date, I think the worst one was a Sharpie pen and a … Read More



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