So Im a first year LPN, I just graduated in April and had my FIRST shift on my own yesterday evening. I had 12 orientation shifts for an acute care unit. I am feeling the most lost and confused I have ever felt in my life. I feel stupid, incompetent, oblivious, unaware, scared, and uncomfortable caring for my clients and working along side these smart and knowledgable nurses.
Im unaware of so many thing Im supposed to check and know about... (ie: labs). I don't even know what I'm looking for, when Im supposed to look, and what it even means. I'm not good at critical thinking. I had a pt. receiving a potassium drip and it was burning his veins (as stated by pt.). I checked his arm for that red streak or signs of infiltration, none. Another nurse came in after I told her what had happened and she slowed down the drip and wrapped his arm in a warm blanket. I would have never thought to do that. All im worried about at this point is getting everything done that needs to be done, and im not even sure if im doing that
I dont feel knowledgable enough to be working where I am.. And I'm unsure of whats expected of me as a new grad. The nurses there don't give me any special treatment, they just treat me as if I should know everything already and sometimes when I ask them a question, they look at me like I have 10 heads and say "shouldn't you know this already?" or atleast they look at me that way. I also feel that because my orientation is over that I shouldn't be asking so many questions. I just feel like I don't fit in, that everyone hates me there and thinks I'm dumb as hell.. I have that gut feeling and sometimes when I ask a question and put my head down to start writing the other nurses look at eachother and whisper about me.. I see it in my peripheral vision. I went in the bathroom and cried on my break, I didn't wanna come back on the floor and feel inadequate. I suffer from Generalzied Anxiety Disorder and this whole "nursing reality shock" had been ruining my life for the last month. My whole thought process is consumed with nursing and I'm worried I'll go into work one day and have somebody FREAK OUT cause of a big mistake I've made. I dunno how to deal with what I'm going through and I feel so lost. I feel like none of my other classmates are going through what I am. They all seem so happy and excited with there jobs and I can't picture them being a question queen like me. I feel stupid around them when they talk about there nursing jobs and how much they love it, when right now, i HATE IT. I would change professions right now and throw it all away to have my sanity back.
I feel like I'm never going to "get it" and that theres 1000000000000000 things to learn, and I wont learn them in time, or remember all of it, to do my job like the other seasoned nurses. I don't remember a lot of what I've learned in school or atleast it seems that way.
I've read lots of first year woes on here, but I can honestly say (not to be little ANYBODY) but I am having the worst experience right now that I've seen. I know people feel incompetent, but I feel really REALLY incompetent. My program consisted of papers which took about 50 percent of the course loads and then only a midterm and final or just a final and everything was in multiple choice. OF course when the right answer is in front of you its gonna pop right off the page but when I have to sit and think about it, it won't come to me. I feel like my school set me up for failure.
I need some words of wisdom, some words of empathy, anything... because right now I'm ready to give up. And I'm a strong woman, and a hard worker always have been. But nothing like this..