10 years later.. Remembering my first clinical patient - page 2
I still remember my first clinical patient well. I was a brand new nursing student, never having touched a patient before starting school, and now she was in my care. She was elderly, although I don't remember her exact age. She... Read More
- 0Mar 24, '10 by candlegirlcbWonderful story..I so enjoyed it. I related to the fear of going in to a new patient and hoping that I didn't come across like a new student..not knowing much, scared, but wanting the patient to trust me and like me. As a new graduate, working in a nursing home with so many residents to take care of ( and I insanely thought the stress I felt of nursing school would be over once I started working as a nurse) I miss having time to sit down and talk to my residents. With the med passes, charting, helping at mealtimes, etc,etc, I find my time is so limited. However what little time that I have with my residents is accompanied by my smiles to the residents, laughter and jokes, genuine concern about how they are feeling and very often hugs and caresses to their faces or loving pats to their hands. I realized I don't have a lot of time to spend with them but I can change the quality of the time that I do spend with them. It is a work in progress and I find that the residents look forward to my presence even if it is in 3 min increments. The residents need to feel loved and cared for and I hope that I give them a little of what they deserve..to be treating with kindness and respect for living their lives and not feeling that their lives are over because they can no longer take care of themslves and have to depend on others for a lot of their needs.
- 1Mar 24, '10 by laurenproemseyWhat a great story!! I'll graduate this May, and I remember my first clinical experience like it was yesterday! I was terrified to go in the room. My patient was under 70 and in a nursing home because his wife could no longer care for him on her own due to his MS. He had contractures from the waist down, had lost bladder control, and was beginning to lose the use of his hands as well. I was so afraid to say something or do something wrong...and how in the world was I going to move this guy so I could give him a shower?! And, what if he hates me? Just as I had that thought, I heard "Get the **** outta here!" As something bounced off the wall behind her head, one of my classmates ran to the nurses station in tears. While consoling her...my instructor saw me, and said..."you'd better go in there!" Yeah....right...
Well, after I talked myself into walking in the door, my patient exclamed, "Hey!! The students are back!! Great!!" I immediately felt 100 times better =) Our first task that morning was to take a detailed history of our patients. One of the questions was about sleeping habits...so I asked my patient..."When did you go to bed? (meaning the night before)" He rasied an eyebrow at me, looked down at his contorted lower extremeties, then started laughing and said..."When did I go to bed?? About 8 years ago!! Did you mean what time do I go to sleep?" I was so glad he had a good 'ol sarcastic sense of humor just like me =)
After lots of transferring help from a friendly tech, I was ready to take him to the shower. I was so busy concentrating on looking like I had done this before (ha!), that I failed to notice my left foot was directly in the line of fire of the shower head. On the way back down the hallway, all you could hear was *step, squish, step, squish* My patient looks back at me and says..."umm, honey is that your foot? You know, usually, I'm the only one who gets a shower around here...but don't worry...I'll get you whipped into shape yet!" I was sooo relieved that my first patient care experience started out on a good note, and that gave me the confidence boost I needed to keep on truckin!!
- 0Mar 27, '10 by SyleanorHi , I was a registered nurse for thirty two years before I took early retirement last December. I did enjoy your story which reminded me of my first clinical experience. Though it wa not my first patient I clearly remember assisting my fellow student to do a bath and dressing for a paraplegic patient with decubitus ulcers when the Principal Nursing Officer burst behind the screens and ripped us apart for having what she called "those dangerous looking forceps". Afterward the patient consoled us. We became friends and I visited her after she was discharged until the time she died. I am still friends with her children. This really made a difference for me.
- 0Apr 1, '10 by edrn66Love the story! Thanks for sharing your story. It belongs in a nursing book. Nursing is such a rewarding job and I'm glad that you found out early on. Humor and wit have gotten me through my career. I'm an E.D. nurse, as well as, Paramedic. So, you know we all see some sad/bad things. But, when we smile or add a little humor the mood lightens and most patients, along with their families appreciate this.
Renee, RN, EMT-P