Some of my favorite clinical memories so far:
--Giving a vivacious elderly lady a bed bath while she told us about her experiences as nurse. Chart said she had dementia, but it didn't seem that way, until she leaned over to me, motioned me to come closer, and pointed to her roommate (sweet old lady, bedridden, knitting things) and said, "See my roommate? She's a WHORE. She goes WHORING every night. She brings her BOY TOYS here all the time."
--Holding a newborn baby, fresh out of the womb and just cleaned up, for the first time to the mom, who cried with happiness. So did I.
--Being on the hospital floor for the first time just after starting school and feeling like a complete idiot among "real" nurses.
--Being on the hospital floor close to graduation and feeling like I have something valuable to offer (best feeling EVER as a nurse).
--Forgetting to check NG tube placement in a post-op cancer patient, flushing it with sterile H2O, and nearly having a stroke as the patient immediately clutches his throat and starts choking (he'd pulled the NG tube earlier). It actually turned out to help him cough up a massive loogey and breathe much better in the end... but needless to say, I never forgot to check placement again after that! :uhoh21:
--Being on a psych unit and having one of my happy manic patients do a spastic impression of Michael Jackson dancing while wearing running shorts and a life preserver (it was 50 degrees outside).
--Being with an elderly burn victim as he died: he'd burned himself badly changing a light bulb (exploded, burned 30% of his body surface 3rd degree), didn't seek medical care because he was afraid to leave his wife with Alzheimer's (he was primary caretaker), and collapsed with total renal failure. Being with a patient as he passed out of this world was something I will never, ever forget.
--Having a cranky detox patient who yelled at everyone because they didn't speak Spanish pat my hand after I gave him an insulin shot and say, "Bueno, bueno" and SMILE.
--Having my favorite clinical instructor give me a clinical evaluation that concluded with, "You are going to be one excellent nurse, Anne."
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