4-Year-Old Quintuplets, a Military Husband & Nursing School: How One Student is Making it Work
Time management is a skill that comes with practice, trial and error and top-notch organizational prowess. It’s also a skill most nursing students discover is necessary to their success. Finding the time to manage school, family, relationships, studying and everything in between is an impressive feat in itself.
Now add one husband currently serving in the military, seven kids under the age of 12 (including 4-year-old quintuplets) and a full-time school schedule and you will have entered a day in the life of Roxanna Hoffman.
Tell us about your nursing school journey.
I had three quarters of nursing school finished and then I was put on bed rest until I had the quints. I raised the kids for a while and then decided the time was right to go back to school shortly after they turned three.
I had researched different universities, but I loved that Chamberlain had no wait list and no wait time so I could get started right away. Also, Chamberlain really makes an effort to help students succeed.
What has it been like juggling school and family without your husband physically present?
I have to be really good with time management. I study when the kids are in bed and I listen to lectures online while I’m folding clothes. I am staying busy always. My oldest son is 12 and he’s helpful. Sometimes he’ll keep the kids busy after school before we go to his sporting events or at night so I can get some studying done.
What has been the most challenging part of balancing school and a family, and what have you done to combat that?
Making sure everyone’s needs are met is the hardest part. My kids weren’t used to mom not being around all the time so they had to adapt to that. Transitioning from being isolated as a stay-at-home mom for the last few years to getting back into a more social setting has been different. I became the vice president of the Student Nursing Association so I could become involved with the school and interact with the other students.
Taking time for yourself can be challenging when you have so much going on. How do you practice self-care?
I work out regularly, about three to four times a week and I stay involved with the kids’ activities. I get a break while they are enjoying themselves. I try to take each moment as it comes.
What advice would you give to parents who want to return to school but are worried about balancing school and family?
I would say to just go for it. There will never be a perfect time in your life to go back to school, so the sooner you do it the easier it is to get back into student life. Everything at home always falls into place.
What kind of nursing would you like to go into?
Pediatric trauma. I know pediatrics well and I have always been drawn to kids. I was also an EMT in the military for six years so I have seen trauma and have a trauma background. As soon as I earn my BSN, I want to continue on for my NP license.
Check out how these other Chamberlain students have managed school, work and family: