This has been a pretty weird week in terms of school. Especially since I’m on vacation.

I spoke with my mentor a few weeks ago about my clinic hours. Basically, I expressed some concern that being in the clinic M/W/F from 8-6:30 and commuting 60 miles for school from 8-5 on T/Th might be a little too much for my body to handle. The majority of my classmates who are doing their part-time clinical in the fall are only in the clinic for about 8 hours a day, instead of the 10 I am lined up to complete. So with my mentor’s suggestion, I emailed the director of clinical education.

It took him almost two weeks to get back to me, but when he did he informed me that though he’s not wild about it, 10 hours days during part time isn’t against the rules. He said that if there was some reason, other than fear of falling behind in my classes (because we’re all going to be afraid of that, whether 8 or 10 hours) that I need shorter days, that I can ask for them.

So I’m torn.

He and I discussed my medical history because I hadn’t really given him all the details. I tend to keep things quiet with instructors who don’t really need to know the details and it turns out that this time, that was a mistake. If I had been up front with him sooner, he could’ve placed me in a clinical where I wouldn’t have to ask for 8 hour days. Which is frustrating.

The result of our talk is that it’s really up to me. It is reasonable for me to talk to my clinical instructor and explain what I think I need and why, but I also don’t have to do it and no one is going to do it for me. And I really don’t know.

On the one hand, I don’t want to perform poorly on my clinical because my body can’t handle 36 clinic hours a week plus 16 hours in school. But on the other hand, I don’t want more accommodations, I don’t want to have to disclose my medical history to a stranger while I’m trying to make a good first impression. I don’t want him to think that I’m not going to be able to perform or that I’m a whiner.

I really don’t know what to do and it’s been weighing heavily on my mind. I have a phone conference set up with my mentor tonight, so hopefully with his help I’ll figure out a plan. My first day is a week from today and boy would I like to go into that with a little less stress than I’m feeling now.

In other school news, I celebrated a small victory today. Granted, it was only the summer semester and it was only 3 classes, but for the first time ever (in graduate school), I got straight As. Not even an A- among them. And that class that I got a low grade on the midterm? Apparently I got a perfect score on the final exam. This wasn’t an easy summer, in fact, it was a relatively awful one in terms of pain, and so I’m really proud of the result.

Hopefully the rest of the school worries will follow suit and ease up a little.

6 Responses to “Schooled”

  • Interesting that you mention that other post in this post, as I was reading this update I was thinking, ‘how is this different from her exam exceptions?’ Do what you need to do in order to be successful.


  • kellye:

    take the accommodation. easier said than done, i know. but haven’t you mentioned being allowed extra exam time in the past? accepting accommodations shouldn’t be totally new. sometimes, pride just has to be checked at the door as we deal with the body (and its accompanying issues!) we’ve been given. no shame. i am sure they will think much more positively, that you’re in graduate school full time and succeeding, in spite of your condition. plus, how big of a bummer would it be to NOT ask for the accommodation, and then do a poor job/finish and realize you were capable of much better work?
    did you hear back from your neuro about the test results?


  • kellye:

    oh, and, WOO HOO congrats on the As and 100% on your final! you go, girl.


  • Don’t set yourself up to fail. Do what your body tells you.


  • JeannieD:

    If you had been in a car accident and were in a wheelchair (as an example), you might also need accomodations. You wouldn’t be able to ‘hide’ your challenge, you would have to come to terms with your new reality and let others help you reach your goals when necessary. As it is, you CAN hide your challenge and do a good job of getting by. But the truth is sometimes you need help. Heck, we all do. Stop being ashamed that you have an illness and need some work arounds. You do not need to wear a t-shirt telling the world, but you do perhaps need to consider not being so stubborn when it comes to sharing your issues and asking for help. Finishing school well is the goal. Not an intact ego. Even though you don’t have anything to be embarassed about anyway.


  • Jackie:

    Congratulations on your As miss smarty pants!

    And you’ll figure out what’s right for you with the clinic hours. I think I personally would ask for help…there is no shame in having a medical need. But, I COMPLETELY understand the desire to be just another student. Good luck making your decision hon. xoxo.


Leave a Reply

I'm Katie, a 30-year-old, wife, mom, former teacher-turned PT, who also had brain surgery in November of 2007. This blog chronicles my daily life, from mundane to crazy, often with far too much detail. Sit down, get comfortable and stay for a while.
Social Media Links
BlogHer Reviewer