Trying to convince nurse residents to choose our unit…
"But in a good way! I swear! Hey… why are you running away? Come baaaaccccckkkkkk!"
I enjoy this, especially with the “nurses eat their young” theory that has been emerging more and more in my life recently.
If you treat new hires like crap, they will leave and you will continue to be short staffed.
Wow. This sums up what I’ve been trying to say perfectly.
Nursing is nursing, whether you’re a med/surg nurse, a critical care nurse, ER, telemetry, pediatric, psychiatric, L & D, clinic, ambulatory, home-care or any other of the many disciplines. We’ve all gone through the same pre-requisites and the same core subjects in nursing school, the same despair that is the nursing school experience, and we’ve all passed the same stressful licensing examination (NCLEX). It doesn’t matter if you graduated from a community college or elitist school, or whether it’s an Associates, Bachelor or Masters degree - what matters is that you don’t look down or disrespect your coworkers who have struggled the same as you, achieved the same as you, and maybe even fought battles you probably didn’t know existed. Respect nursing by respecting one another.
Nurse X (via idledancer)
that is so sweet of you to think of me! I didn't think you'd remember me. gah I bet you are a fantastic nurse and all your families love you. Yes, I do have a preceptor whose schedule I follow but I get my own assignment now. She's very sweet but since it's so hectic she has her own stuff to do and I'm over here taking up her time and I feel bad :( I hope you don't mind, but I'll probably be sending you sporadic anon messages, or maybe even be brave enough to come off anon at some point :)
Well it was sweet of you to reach out and trust me to ask questions to! I don’t know about “fantastic” lol… start throwing around labels like that and my next shift will inevitably have me inserting my foot in my mouth in front of a family who will certainly not love me after that! =)
It’s all a work in progress. I’ve made a fool of myself plenty of times in front of my preceptors, fellow nurses (boy could they tell you some stories!), and families. It’s all a process. And for you and I, who are at the beginning of our careers it’s still all up hill for us. Each shift is going to present its own set of challenges. And, this is an important one, EVERY SINGLE SHIFT I HAVE A QUESTION FOR SOMEONE WHO IS MORE EXPERIENCED THAN I! We all do. Sometimes it’s just to hear, “Yes, that’s right”. Or it’s a new policy. Or just something you’ve never seen/heard before. We’re always learning.
I know it’s hard to interrupt your preceptor or another nurse with a question but eventually you won’t have that question again and before you know it there will be another nurse, even newer than you, asking the same question when you’re busy with your own patients. And the answer will come right to you and you’ll get to make a new nurse feel a little bit better about his/her work.
Just remember to be kind to yourself! And ALWAYS feel free to send questions/vents/concerns my way! I’ll do what I can.
Oh, and as a side note to you and everyone else who submits questions. If you submit it as “anonymous” the only choice I have is to publish your answer on the blog. If, however, you submit it from your Tumblr account I have the option, at your request, to answer just you. It’s a good option for people wanting an answer to something more specific, or if there needs to be a continuing dialogue.
I just wanted to say - thank you for posting that video. I don't know how you did it, but it was perfect timing. I just wrapped up 3 nights in a row for this week and it has been ridiculously busy and crazy and there were many times I found myself questioning why I even chose to go into this field in the first place. That video reminded me why I did. (not sure if you remember me, but I'm in that nurse residency program! s'been kinda rough, but. just keep swimming, right?)
The universe is such a funny place! I just logged back onto Tumblr because I was going to do a shout-out for you, anon! I was wondering how things were going for you… I’m so glad that you enjoyed the video! It absolutely brings me the utmost thrill to think that I can help or encourage any of my fellow nurses out there.
I’m glad that you’re sticking with it, too. I remember so vividly what it was like to be a nurse resident and navigating being a new nurse. I do hope you’re finding your rhythm and your place within the unit. If it makes you feel any better I just finished up a crazy 3-in-a-row round myself where there were several times that I just felt like I was a pee-wee football player in the NFL. (we like football in my house so sorry for the analogy!) I was literally dragging my feet walking out of the hospital I was so exhausted. But at the end of the day, (or maybe the next day when my brain had finally rebooted) I know I made a difference in my patients’ lives and that of their families. And you do too! Don’t ever forget that!
I meant to ask if you had found anyone that you’ve been able to talk to yet within your unit that is helping you adjust to nursing. I hope so!
I’m going to start volunteering at the local hospital this week in their NICU. I’m really excited, it’s what I’ve wanted to do since I was in middle school, and I’m a senior in college now. But I’m really nervous and scared. I’ll be (hopefully) going to graduate school next fall for nursing with a track in NNP. Do you have any words of wisdom or advice? And I’m afraid I’ll experience it firsthand and then for some reason I won’t want to go for my NNP and I’ll have no idea what I’ll want to do.
That’s great that you’re going to get to volunteer in the NICU and get a sneak peek of what that nursing specialty has to offer.
If you’re going to actually have the opportunity to do some nursing related tasks, click here for a post with some information that I typed out for another student.
As far as advice goes, I think for your situation I would tell you to just enjoy the ride. You’re either still in nursing school now or about to start it (sorry I couldn’t tell from your post) which means there are still a lot of experiences to be had. I truly hope that the NICU is everything you wish it to be, but it’s okay if it’s not. (Repeat after me: It’s okay if it’s not.)
The hard thing about nursing is that for so many of us it is a calling. It’s not just picking some major and going out there and getting any old job. It is a lifestyle. It has the potential to affect our lives just as much if not more than the patients who come under our charge.
So when you worry about not liking the specialty, it’s not the same as saying, “Hmm… I really don’t like working in retail. Maybe I’ll get an office job instead.” It’s saying, “Dear god, is this thing, this dream I have for my life a possibility? Is it going to be as beautiful and meaningful as I’ve worked it up in my mind to be?”
Maybe you’ll like it, maybe you won’t. But remember with any nursing job there are going to be days where we turn our eyes upward and shake our fists at the heavens and scream, “Why the hell am I doing this???” But most days, when we’re where we’re supposed to be, we are filled with the peace of knowing that what we do makes a difference for our patients and for ourselves.
You’ll find your niche either way. I promise! I know this first-hand. When I started the nurse residency program I was just sure that I wanted to work in pediatric hematology/oncology. And guess what? When I had my shift rotation through that department, I didn’t like it! It wasn’t what I thought it was going to be. But I fell in love with the NICU, (ironically enough, my first nursing love way back to the days of high school), and fortunately for me that’s where I landed.
Sure, I was surprised that I didn’t like heme/onc. I was already a member of the Oncology Nursing Society and I had volunteered in an adult oncology clinic before, so I felt I had a realistic expectation of what I would see. I had in my mind that I was going to work there.
But I didn’t know what I didn’t know! I didn’t know that I love being in a critical care environment. I didn’t know that I would love working with infants. I didn’t know that I would love the dynamic that is created between the families and the NICU team.
But getting out there and experiencing it with an open mind… keeping your eyes and ears and heart open… taking everything in… that’s what this experience can afford you. Many people don’t have this type of opportunity. So enjoy it for what it is. A glimpse into what your future may be. Learn what you can while you’re there. Talk to nurses and ask them what it is about their job that they love. What do they hate? What makes them come back shift after shift?
Stay in the moment, anon. Everything else can fall into place afterwards.
I really hope this helps. Write back and let me know how it’s going!