What Doesn't Matter

  1. This is for all the nursing students who have yet to work as a nurse on the floor. I just graduated, got my RN licesnse, and am in an internship on a stepdown floor where I was a tech for a year prior. I've been in these forums the entire time I was in CNA school and nursing school and this is what I have learned in my first 3 weeks as a nurse:

    It doesn't matter what degree you have--RN is what counts

    It doesn't matter what nursing organization you belong to--you won't have time for any of that.

    The academic environment and the so-called "nurses" who were your instructors won't matter any more. Floor nursing is supercharged compared to all the BS games that get played in nursing school.

    The things you think are important like med administration, foleys, IM injections, IV starts, keeping up your CNA skills etc. are the easy things you do compared to learning the skill of prioritizing, the various chart forms required for the various procedures, the MDs names and faces, and the freaking phone numbers of all the departments and pagers you have to call!

    Being a nurse is nothing like being an aid. The level of responsibility is staggering. Aids have no responsibility compared to the RN. It's all on the RN.

    The change from aid to RN came all of the sudden. One day I was an aid/student waiting for my license, the next day I was an RN. In my first day, I pushed IV demerol a dozen times. That was the "grand" level of responsibility I thought about as an aid. As a nurse, it was just the next thing I did in a series of a million things.

    I don't look in my PDA drug guide for all the interactions, SEs, etc., etc., if I don't know a drug, I have only enough time to look up the general classification (for which I know the general SEs) and then I'm moving to administer it.

    Time management (that is, efficiency and competence mixed with what has the highest priorities for you in any moment, and what can wait until the "dead" times during the shift) is all that matters. Everything else is meaningless or relatively easy.

    Getting a BSN? MSN? PhD? Me? When would I ever have the time to do that? I'm lucky to have the time to be the nurse I am. I'm glad I have a Bsc in another field, because once you're a nurse, all of that gets pushed out of your mind in a desperate attempt to fill the huge shoes you suddenly stepped into.
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   unknown99
    Excellently said!!!!!
  4. by   Havin' A Party!
    One -- What a fab post!

    Thanks for taking the time to fill us in on "real-world" nursing. Much appreciated.

    Sounds like you're doing great and learning a ton! Please keep passing some of that wisdom on to us when you get the chance.

    All the best to ya!
  5. by   llg
    I loved your post ... welcome to Allnurses.com. I don't agree with everything you said, but I understand that you are feeling more than a little overwhelmed at the moment. :-) Hopefully, you will master those ogranization/time management requirements of your job and become so familiar with the people and the paperwork that it all comes easily and automatically. At that point, you should re-discover that some of those things you now think are unimportant are actually worth a little of your time and attention, too.

    Hang in there,
    llg
  6. by   SRbear
    Can you come work at my hospital??
  7. by   RN4NICU
    Quote from OneRN

    Getting a BSN? MSN? PhD? Me? When would I ever have the time to do that? I'm lucky to have the time to be the nurse I am. I'm glad I have a Bsc in another field, because once you're a nurse, all of that gets pushed out of your mind in a desperate attempt to fill the huge shoes you suddenly stepped into.
    You'll grow into those shoes, just give yourself some time.
    After you do, you may change your mind about a few things.

    Welcome to allnurses!
  8. by   Tweety
    Welcome! The shock and the awesome responsibility and the just being busy is amazing.

    We'll probably see a lot more posts like this, first it's the "I passed! posts" Then it's the reality posts.

    Excellent.
  9. by   jnette
    What a nice and original way to introduce yourself.

    WELCOME to Allnurses, OneRN.
  10. by   prmenrs
    Bless your heart! It sounds like you feel a little overwhelmed. You're doing great. Bet you thought you'd never learn so much so fast! Keep studying a little while each night, it'll help you@ work, cuz you'll see examples in action every day. Things will click in!

    Welcome to allnurses--you can relax a little here!

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