Maybe this isn't for me?? LONG ENTRY

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    I absolutely hate whining which is why this is taking a lot outta me. But I feel as though I NEED to let this out or else I'll explode.

    So I'm a new grad. Got my diploma in June, boards in August & started working in July. I work on a neuro/med-surge floor & the first few months went by okay. Actually, my orientation period was great. I felt supported by my preceptors, was focused & only got overwhelmed a hand full of times. I felt like I could handle it. I work the night shift, and my first couple of months off of orientation went by pretty smoothly too. I'm a little shy, & at first the PCTs on my floor gave me a really hard time. They would respect me, wouldn't do the things I asked etc. I think it had a lot to do with the fact that I'm over 30 years younger than them =] but that's not my fault right?!?!

    anyway a couple of nights ago I had my first code and death. this poor lady 75 years old, was originally admitted with pneumonia.The rest of the morning I was a complete and utter mess. It was my first experience with death & seeing a lifeless body. I was so flustered and overwhelmed that when I got home I completely broke down crying hysterically. Ever since then, I've been dreading going to work and checking patients for carotid pulses every hour! I feel unraveled, like this isn't what I signed up for and don't know if I can hack it anymore. I've only been working for 5 months, and I want a different career. The guilt I feel kills me every morning and I don't think it will ever completely go away. I just don't have the same drive as I used to. Either I feel great after work or a complete and utter failure for missing something. There's no in between!

    Anyway I don't even know why I'm writing this on here. Any help or advice would be great, thanks.
    Last edit by nursey18 on Feb 4, '09
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  3. 2 Comments so far...

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    I would recommed talking to someone about your experience. At least at my facility, it's part of the chaplains' jobs to help staff deal with crisis and death as well as to help families. Even if you aren't particularly religious, ours are trained to help in a nondenominational way. Do you still work with your preceptor? Try to find a minute to talk to him/her about it, and maybe they can recommend something for you. Any other coworkers that you're close to? What about an instructor from school that you really liked - would you be comfortable e-mailing and asking for advice? You could also consider talking to someone privately, and your health insurance should cover it. You can ask your PCP for a referral, or again this may be something that clergy could help you with. Good luck, I'm sorry this was so rough for you!
    nursey18 likes this.
  5. 1
    You poor thing!:heartbeat

    I completely agree with the previous poster. You have obviously suffered emotional trauma and need to receive appropriate follow-up assistance. I am with a faith-based org & this is pretty normal for us - spiritual care is offered to all who are involved.

    Seeing death 'up close & personal' is one of the profound differences between nurses & other people. Part of the coping mechanism is coming to grips with one's own belief system and values. For instance, those of us who share an absolute belief in a supreme being realize that a higher power is exactly that. No matter how much we try, there are some things we cannot 'fix' and some lives we cannot extend. We also belive that the end of physical life is not the end of everything - and there are some things much worse than death.

    Don't be afraid to ask for the help you need to put this terrible experience into perspective. We're here for you.
    nursey18 likes this.


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