I posted something similar about a patient of mine a few weeks ago. She was my first patient to code (on my shift) and she later died (though not on my shift). I went over the entire day in my head repeatedly trying to figure out what I did wrong. I was absolutely sure that something I had done that day had led to my patient's demise. I mean, how could it not? One minute she's laughing and talking to me and the next we're pounding on her chest frantically fighting for her life.
Then I thought about it. I talked to my friends. I jumped on this board and asked experienced nurses for their thoughts. You know what? My patient was sick too. She may not have seemed like it in 11 out of the 12 hours I was lucky enough to spend with her, but she was sick. She was diabetic and hypertensive and had a huge cardiac history.
Someone from that post had told me that certain patient's come into our lives for a reason. I know I will never forget that patient, that day, or that feeling that I may have even remotely
been responsible for my patient's death. I knew I never wanted to have that feeling again. It has made me even more aware of everything I do and even more thankful for each moment I get to spend with each of my patients.
Anyway, these situations happen sometimes and in short, we need to learn to deal with them. It's not always easy, we bond with patients everday and that's not a bad thing. It can be ridiculously hard to deal with the fact that we don't always get to win but it's just the way it is. It's great to have a support system (even out of this message board). I have friends that are nurses and I think talking to people who can relate is important. It's just as important to find a hobby that can help you get away from the hospital or other healthcare setting.
Good luck and I think you'll be a wonderful nurse