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Patricia Kirk Hefferan MA RN
Class of 1961
I just finished attending courses at Rutgers State University of Nursing. Working in mental health, chemical dependency and pysch crisis left me with few clinical and technical skills. The courses were wonderful but much like stuffing 4 years of nursing into three months. I was as anxious as a new nursing student and I doubt that few people are more anxious than those who enter nursing. I struggled with dosing calculations - math has never been my strong point and this is just algebra. With the help of my husband and the "ligthbulb" that seems to go on, I passed. We needed this for St. Barnabas, our clinical site. I found that I like medical-surgial nursing again. On April 7th we had our final and our evaluations. I was up the night before at 2AM with thoughts racing through my head. I gave in, got up and studied. I passed with a high grade and my evaluaton was more than I expected. I am currently looking for employment in a medical setting rather than mental health, et al although those skills will always be utilized. Nurses are rescuers so I added a feral cat to our home. The cat shelter was being closed and the cats were headed for euthanasia. I wrote a Letter to the Editor and found out that of the 230 cats in that shelter,160 had been adopted within 24 hours after my letter appeared. Now I have a cat named Krystal who resides on a soft blanket in our hutch. She doesn't know the bars have been removed and the door flung open.. She won't let us pick her up but she loves her tummy rubbed and loves to be stroked. She will tolerate being on the floor when I am on the computer. I placed her food and water there to force her to move around. Time takes time but our hope is that Krystal will assimiliate into our family eventually. When you think about how deep the damage is with animals who are abused and abandoned just think about the children who have faced and are facing similiar life experiences. Pete and I are busy teaching the first, second and third graders the Liturgy of the Word. We both sing in the choir and we also belong to Helping Hands, a group that seeks to assist church members to feel involved and valued by our parish. We are still restoring our basement after the hurricane and tropical storm in August. A 150 foot hickory tree fell on our fence and house. We are almost finished and the basement will look better than it did before. There is always a bright side. I spent months negotiating with the insurance company, FEMA and the SBA. It became a full-time job but the end is in sight. This is a somwhat whimsical, benign list of activities and accomplishments but I have a sense of pride. We are here to do good for others and all one has to do is look around. Needs abound, Make and take your choices. A single mission of caring brings more joy to the rescuer than the rescued. Love to all, Patty