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Clinicals... feeling kind of dumb.

Posted
by Keila Keila Member Nurse

Specializes in LTC, Ortho/Med-Surg. Has 1 years experience.

Hey everyone!

I'm a second semester nursing student, and I had another med-surg clinical today. I ended the day really feeling kind of stupid, and I was wondering if anyone else has felt this way.

It seems like I know the big stuff (assessments, etc), but I totally forget the small stuff. Prime example -- today I brought a patient back from x-ray. Her IV pump was on the wheelchair pole, and I had to move it back to the pole in her room. I didn't know how to disconnect the pump! The PTA who was coming in the room showed me how. Now, I can hang this woman's IV fluids, start the pump, and check compatibility and all that good stuff, but I couldn't get the pump off of one pole and onto another. Felt like a complete moron, yes I did :rolleyes:

Do you guys ever forget the small stuff?

nursel56

Specializes in Peds/outpatient FP,derm,allergy/private duty. Has 45 years experience.

I know I did. . . and I still have trouble changing a gown on a patient with lots of tubes and wires every which way derrrrr. . .;)

anurseatlast

Specializes in maternal child, public/community health. Has 4 years experience.

Everyone feels dumb at clinical at least some of the time. You are just learning. You WILL get it. If it makes you feel any better, when I was learning to do IV meds, my clinical instructor said, "You haven't played many video games have you?" I replied that I had played very few (I was much older than the other students). She said, "That's what I thought. I can always tell the students that don't play video games because they don't have good eye-hand coordination." Thankfully, I have a sense of humor and thought it was funny! Eventually, in spite of my lack of coordination, I learned how to do it relatively easily. You will too. Just give yourself time and ask someone to explain/help with the things you don't know.

KeeperMom

Specializes in ED. Has 10 years experience.

No. I am perfect. I never make mistakes and I am never wrong about anything.

and if you believe that, I have a beach house in Arizona I'll sell ya.

Try not to beat yourself up. We all have brain farts every now and then. Of course, you feel a little dumb right now but that is part of the whole school/clinical experience. You learn from those mistakes and try not to repeat 'em. Keep your chin up and keep your focus!!

meredith

We all do it - it is normal. Cut yourself some slack!

You will be fine if you remember we are not perfect . . .like "keepermom"! ;)

steph

nursel56

Specializes in Peds/outpatient FP,derm,allergy/private duty. Has 45 years experience.

Oh my gosh- anurseatlast- what a thing to say! It's kind of like she called you a klutz without actually saying it? Gee, thanks, lol. If they were really honest, I bet instructors could have a thread, "dumb things I've said to students" just like we have the dumb or embarrassing things students say. :)

JBudd, MSN

Specializes in Trauma, Teaching. Has 40 years experience.

Ah, 29 years into it and with a master's, I still ask for help now and again. People that won't ask are dangerous.:smokin:

Keila

Specializes in LTC, Ortho/Med-Surg. Has 1 years experience.

Thanks everyone for the replies! I just felt so silly trying to get that pump off. It's those little things that get me every time. I can tell you one thing, though -- I will NEVER not know how to take one off again! :)

Anurseatlast -- wow! I'm glad you had a sense of humor about what your instructor said. It kind of sounds like one of those things that you don't mean to sound as bad as it does.

And KeeperMom, about that beach house.... :lol2:

Nepenthe Sea

Specializes in PICU/Pedi. Has 5 years experience.

I had to start putting sticky notes in my clinical notebook to remind me to make sure the siderails were up on the patients' beds (I forgot once) and little stuff like that. It happens. :o

~Mi Vida Loca~RN, ASN, RN

Specializes in Emergency Dept. Trauma. Pediatrics. Has 6 years experience.

It's beause they drill the big stuff in school, we don't get a lot of practice with the small stuff.

My first day on Med/Surge clinicals I didn't know how to empty the catheter. I could put one in without breaking sterile field and do it well. (at least on the dolls LOL) but they never showed us how to empty it. It wasn't like pop it open and closed, it actually looked a little complicated. LOL I went and asked an aide to show me.

HyperSaurus, RN, BSN

Specializes in NICU. Has 9 years experience.

Mi Vida, that made me laugh. My first day, I could not figure out how to get the cap off of the lancet for a blood sugar check. My partner and I struggled for a couple minutes until our patient took mercy on us and did it himself.

~Mi Vida Loca~RN, ASN, RN

Specializes in Emergency Dept. Trauma. Pediatrics. Has 6 years experience.

Mi Vida, that made me laugh. My first day, I could not figure out how to get the cap off of the lancet for a blood sugar check. My partner and I struggled for a couple minutes until our patient took mercy on us and did it himself.

HAHA, those things vary depending on the facility too. I did them tons in the nursing home and in the hospital I look dumbfounded for a few minutes at how they had their stuff.

Keila

Specializes in LTC, Ortho/Med-Surg. Has 1 years experience.

Oh, this does make me feel better! It took me forever to figure out the lancets, too -- and I have yet to empty a catheter bag, MiVida. I'll be sure to find out how to do that before my next clinical!

HyperSaurus, RN, BSN

Specializes in NICU. Has 9 years experience.

The only reason why I got the catheter emptying was because I watched a nurse teach a patient how to as part of her discharge instructions.