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2 weeks March 16, 2010

Posted by futurenightnurse in Clinical, Student Life.
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3 comments

Wow it’s been 2 weeks since I last posted? I wish I could say that I was on vacay and just having so much fun that I didn’t have time to post… but alas, that isn’t why I’ve been away. To be honest, I forgot my password and I didn’t bother till yesterday to reset it.

So far I have 2 midterms out of the way. (Yay!) I have one more coming up. I’m just glad they aren’t all lumped together in 1 week. There is much writing (essays) left to do and I’ll probably be using my spring break to do that. Fun fun…

Senior focus is going well. I am really enjoying the ICU. =) I love the work environment… who ever said the ICU is filled with a bunch of loners? lol The nurses work together and have great communication. I get a really good vibe there, like it would be an awesome place to work! I’ve found that your 3 best friends in ICU are: the unit clerk, the RT, and the charge nurse!

Senior project is also great! I have fun testing the 1st year students. If your nursing program allows you to do that, I recommend it! Not only is it helping me brush up on my skills, but the teaching aspect of it helps me to think of skills more critically than when I was the 1st year student nervous to pass the skill.

Sorry I don’t have any stories. When I think of something I’ll let you know!

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Tsk! February 27, 2010

Posted by futurenightnurse in Clinical, Just a Nursing Student.
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4 comments

84

Dear annoyed family member(s):

I know you are concerned about your loved one, but it’s not going to benefit anyone to grill the nursing student. I do not write orders for meds or procedures or tests. I do not control the ET tube or vent, except to maybe suction when necessary (or during assessments). I do not titrate the meds to sedate, relieve pain, maintain the blood pressure or rate heart of your loved one. The doctors are out in the hall, the RT is across the hall and the nurse is in the next room. Let me get one of them for you, take your pick.

Yes, there’s a bunch of stuff I can do, but it’s often under the supervision of a licensed R.N. I certainly cannot and should not give you any medical-related information relating to the condition of your critically-ill loved one.

So please, please, please… when the student nurses tells you, “I’m sorry I cannot answer those questions, you may ask the RN when she comes back.” Don’t look down your nose at me in disgust and suck your teeth to say, “You’re just a student,” as if student were a dirty word. Because, yes, I am a student. Just like I first told you when I introduced myself… and there are things my facility will not let me do, like talk about your loved one’s medical condition, so please stop asking.

Sincerely,
Just a nursing student

I made it! February 6, 2010

Posted by futurenightnurse in Clinical.
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Of course, the night before my first day back at the hospital I would manage to hurt myself. The other night (at home), I tripped in the hallway and thought I sprained my ankle. I even heard the crack-ack-ack when I fell, but the pain I felt wasn’t as excruciating as I remember having before AND I was actually able to move my foot without wanting to cry. I literally laid on the floor in the exact spot I fell, praying and cursing and muttering under my breath all at the same time. I was so mad at myself, how stupid to trip… all the thoughts ran through my head like: What if I had to miss a semester because of a stupid sprained ankle? My daughter, bless her heart, rushed to me and asked if I was ok. Her concern made me laugh at myself. I sat up and played with my ankle a bit. Not too bad… so I got up slowly to stand on it, and it turned out just fine. Even better, I made it through my 10-hr shift the next day!

My ankle still hurts a little, but it didn’t swell or bruise so that means it’s not a sprain, right? It just doesn’t like it when I have it a certain way. Let’s just say I won’t be running on it any time soon…

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

The first day of my preceptorship in the ICU went well. I think. What threw me off was not being able to research my patients the night before. Sure I knew their diagnoses, brief history, current history, etc. just from report, but I like being able to pick stuff apart the day before clinical. This time… it was jumping right in.

Scary.

But it was alright. I survived! My preceptor is awesome! It makes a world of difference when your nurse is eager to teach. I took it all in… even though some of the stuff she was saying was review from last semester. I was ok with that. Note to self: I need to carry a small pad of paper for stuff I want to look up during my down time.

Speaking of down time… there isn’t much. By the time you are done with one task, it’s on to the next. Vitals every hour; assessments every 4; check the drips, lines, tubes, and Foleys; meds as scheduled (which felt like all the time); new orders to follow; codes (in other rooms); new admits to help with, etc. It was my first 10-hr shift, but ya know… I didn’t feel tired until I sat down. I was too busy to feel tired when I was running around doing stuff.

I actually did get to have a lunch break. Surprise, surprise! I’ll have to remind myself to bring a lunch next time so I don’t have to go all the way down to the cafeteria.

It felt good to be back!

You Never Know January 26, 2010

Posted by futurenightnurse in Student Life.
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116

Any place you go there’s always at least one person that tends to rub others the wrong way. Especially Even nursing school. Lucky for me I’ve dealt with difficult people my whole life (thank you, family) so I can pretty much get along with anyone. One of my former study mates (“former” only because he graduated early by combining his 5th and 6th semesters) was known as the smart ass of our group. He used to annoy me and another mate during class. I’m the shrug-it-off or laugh-at-myself type, so it didn’t bother me too much. My friend, however, took it to heart… she was irritated at the mere sight of him.

Anyway, long story short: you cannot judge a book by its cover! Or sometimes not even by the first few pages, either. Smart Ass (and I say that lovingly) was a real big help recently. I almost expected he would be too busy to answer a text from me, but he surely did. =)

I had been worried about which ICU floor to choose, who to pick as a preceptor (or more importantly, who to avoid), etc. By taking me seriously when I went into panic mode, he made me feel so much more at ease with the whole ordeal. It all worked out just fine last week.

It would’ve been easy to write this guy off as a douche. Seriously. But he really is a nice guy after all. You just never know.

Has anyone surprised you?

Preceptorship Roulette January 19, 2010

Posted by futurenightnurse in Student Life.
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Someone posted on their FB that they got their preceptorship assignment today. A few left comments on her status that made me realize not everyone knows where they’re going to be yet. That made me a little nervous… I hadn’t heard a confirmation from the school’s clinical coordinator at all either!

I sifted through my email. My instructor had acknowledged an email I sent her (back in December) asking for further instructions regarding securing a spot in the ICU. She said I didn’t need to do any more than I already had (I spoke with the hospital’s ICU coordinator to get my name on the list.)  As far as I know, my name is on that list. I emailed her again today… just to see if there is an orientation prior to the start of classes or if anything has changed. Tomorrow I’m calling the hospital.

Technically, classes start on Thursday, but I don’t have a nursing class till Monday. I have Leadership and a case studies class. Another nursing class is online and two more are on-site (a preceptorship at the hospital and a senior project/community service).

I have an orientation in the morning for my senior project, which is basically participating in some sort of community service… I chose to help out in the nursing lab to mentor first year nursing students. Lord, help me.

My non-nursing classes are: Asian-American Communities, Visual Culture, and American Inequality. So much for an “easy” final semester. The upside is that these classes actually sound interesting. After all, I don’t wanna just fulfill graduation requirements, I want to learn. I mean, nursing isn’t everything. (Ssshhh… don’t tell anyone I said that.)

Anyone else taking non-nursing classes with their nursing stuff? What was/is the most interesting non-nursing class you’ve taken?