for a loving and supportive family. for best friends. for the amazing seven. for iced coffee. for my iPad 2. for katniss, peeta, and gale. for 6 East nurses. for incredible memories. for opportunities. for guidance. for life.
I definitely need to stop scheduling new grad classes right after a night of work because 16 hour shifts do not work for me. And speaking of work, I’ve spent 4/5 days there so I am so ready to have next couple days off.
i’m a college graduate. i’ve got a promising career as a nurse in a major city hospital. i’ve traveled and volunteered abroad. i’ve been able to give back to my incredible family and friends, who constantly amaze me with their caring and loving presence. i’ve got a home. i’m never hungry or thirsty. i have many many doors and opportunities open to me.
i’d say i’m doing pretty damn well for being twenty two. yes, there are things that are noticeably absent in my life - things that can turn my life from great to perfect. and certain things i want to work on in this next year of life. but, overall, i’d say i have a pretty good life.
can’t wait for this next chapter and (hopefully) for the great things that it will bring.
i definitely need the next couple days off to recover from the night i had:
- new admit with blood transfusion and dropping blood pressure
- post-procedure patient with Q15 min VS for 1 hr, Q30 min for 2nd hr. super anxious and angry at the world and did not want me in the room at all.
- total feeder, Q2H turn
- schizoaffective diabetic who kept wanting to be unhooked from antibiotics to go smoke (which were scheduled at the same time, with only one IV and refused to have another placed) and kept wanting orange juice and graham crackers
- one who requested an enema at 4 am
my call lights were going off so often everyone just assumed it was for me. on the bright side, i had really great support from my fellow nurses. and in the downtime, we were able to feast because i brought food and so did my coworker in celebration of my birthday.
could not even imagine getting through this night (or the past and future nights for that matter) without them.
i was just talking to my cousin about her first day with total patient care as a nursing student and i was thinking about my first semester and how new and exciting and different everything was. and then we got into the topic of student journals and i went searching for mine from first semester and i found my first one:
March 23, 2009
It felt surreal waking up this morning because this morning meant that I would actually have a patient to take care of. Not a dummy or a classmate or some interactive computer simulation – a real live person with a very real illness who will probably be in pain and large amounts of discomfort. It felt like a daunting task but I felt confident knowing I’ve practiced the skills necessary and I’ve read over the material that I needed to know. I was further reassured that everything will be fine because I knew that I was not the only one feeling this way – I had my other nursing students and teaching assistant and professor to help me and guide me along to the way.
When I first walked into my assigned patient’s room, my initial thought was that “this guy is sick.” That may seem like a strange first thought given that we were in the medical surgical floor of a hospital but, it was just these are not the type of people we see on a regular basis. It’s different; it’s new; and it’ll probably take some time to get used to it.
I felt like my patient was too fragile to do any procedures on. He had contractures and looked very weak. I was afraid that even turning him would hurt him and cause him even more pain than he already had. I realize that it is important and beneficial to turn him and clean him even if it’ll cause a bit of discomfort but it was still hard to take the first step.
My experiences today helped solidify even more what being a nurse means to me. It means to have compassion and empathy. It means wanting what is best for your patients. It means being their advocate, consistently and irrevocably. And, that’s what I felt throughout the entire morning I was with my patient – I wanted nothing more than all his problems to go away and be able to walk outside without the aid of another and enjoy whatever beautiful experiences the world had to offer. I don’t know if that will be at all possible for my patient today but I still want to have hope that he will get better someday and live as much as possible despite what tribulations his problems might bring.
I can see how I will experience so many different and new things on my journey to become a nurse. I know that some days will be better than others. But, I think I’m going to be looking forward to those days – just as long as I prepare for whatever situations life will throw at me.
i have had a long long journey since this first journal. but, there are so many things i can still learn from these words. things are difficult right now but maybe thinking about these words and the person that wrote them will keep me motivated and positive again.