Monday, September 20, 2010

now just green behind the gills

Today I was left wondering if I'd made the right choice in becoming a nurse. Or rather, it was more like....what the hell have I gotten myself into!?!

Last week there was a certain level of comfort, just sitting at a table, watching DVD movies on topics such as infection control and dementia. This week we're branching out a bit. Today we set out with "rounds sheets", which are a checklist of things that are supposed to be done in a shift. Many items are particular to each resident (O2 tubing changed and dated, A.M. care provided, etc.) and then there are such items as making sure the med cart is locked when you walk away from it.

As I'm walking around I come across a resident who complains of dizziness. She tells me that she gets dizzy in the mornings and it usually resolves as the day goes on. I go and tell her nurse who then asks me to get orthostatic vital signs on her. I didn't even think to do that. I suck. And I'm going to take care of your grandmother or grandfather!?! I'm so worried about the stupid checklist I can't even fathom to think critically.

A career switch to graphic arts doesn't so bad right now.

16 comments:

nurse XY said...

Hang in there. You'll get into the swing of things.

Joy said...

LOL, you'll get your grove in no time! You're gonna be a GREAT nurse! :)

forever said...

I'm appreciate your writing skill.Please keep on working hard.^^

Cartoon Characters said...

awww. Don't be so hard on yourself. As a student you can't expect to know to do everything...it takes time to have it be 2nd nature....you sound like you are very conscientious and that is all we really expect!! It's great that you forwarded the information right away....no harm done! :) You didn't kill anyone. Don't worry about it. Honest. :)

Cartoon Characters said...

oops...i saw your note on the side that you are now an RN and no longer a student. Hey,don't worry...it takes time for everything to kick in and become second nature.... :) honestly.Don't be so hard on yourself! :)

Christine said...

lol.. I used to think that at every shift... but you'll get it and all those things you learned in school really do come out. PRN meds are your friend and VS are vital.

Oh and the dizzy in the am that resolves in the afternoon can be a number of things including sleep apnea and hydration issues. With the elderly the symptoms are vague and everyone has a UTI... enjoy!

The scary part is doing rounds with the state.

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Crazed Nitwit said...

I so completely feel you. I have that feeling 10 times a day at least!! Hang in there!!! HUGS

Heather said...

I know! It's so dang overwhelming at first. Don't worry you will do great. Once the routine jobs are no brainers you will think more critically. You are a great nurse.
Repeat after me....

LivingDeadNurse said...

thats the best way to learn. I bet you next time you will do that first. So don't worry. Your still learning. I have done stuff like that myself. Almost all new nurses have. Just hang in there k

Nursapalooza said...

hey, that Heather up there was me from nursapalooza. The sign in was freaking out so I had to sign up under my other gmail!

Jen said...

Often times when it's your own patient, common sense goes out the window. I bet if it was one of your classmates with that patient, you'd be able to think clearly enough to come up with ideas of what to do.

I've been in nursing for nearly 7 years now & that's how it is for me. When it's my own patient having a crisis, my mind goes blank. If it's one of my co-workers pt's....I can easily list 10 things that need to be done. I'm sure I'm not the only nurse that feels that way.

Take it easy on yourself...you sought out help for this patient. That's a huge step. Some would have ignored her & moved on. You did the right thing by going to your instructor.

E.J. said...

I think you did fine. It doesn't sound like the patient was in acute distress. If that were my patient, I would rather you notify me upfront. Otherwise, you're working on her by yourself and all the while I have no idea there could be a problem.

Those unexpected situations are the hardest things to adapt to as a new nurse. Don't be too hard on yourself. If it had been your patient, you would have talked to her a little more, gotten some good history and remembered vitals and some basic assessment stuff. Failing to immediately get orthostatics in a patient with long-standing dizziness? Probably not a big deal.

Crazed Nitwit said...

I was told to send a man out yesterday to ER. Long history and story but being new I had NO idea. Paramedics come in and ask if I checked his blood sugar. I am so stupid so I can relate. Silly me just checked his vitals and capillary refill.

KLS said...

Thanks for all the support everyone! It's definitely like a roller coaster ride so far; some days up, some days down!

Cartoon Characters said...

Actually, what they had me do on my first day on the job (the one i do now) is write down all my fears about the job and the things that worry me, scare me etc. Seal it in an envelope and then open it a year later.........(even 6 months later would be ok too) .......and you will laugh at everything you are feeling right now. It is a good exercise for any new job! :)