First Day on my own!

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My first day on my own will be this Saturday! I am a nervous wreck! I know it's impossible to get 100% of all scenarios in orientation, but I just still feel so incompetent. I accepted a position as an RN on a intermediate/medical surgical unit. I was previously an LPN in a doctors office. This is a HUGE change! This is what I wanted, but I just get so nervous the night before work it's hard to sleep! My last day of orientation I was told by our on boarding specialist that everyone said I was doing great and thought I was going to make a great addition to the unit. I just have to work on my confidence! I am blessed to have supportive co-workers and a job! I am just missing the comfort of my old job of not having the nerves and losing sleep. I just keep trying to remind myself why I went back to school and why I chose to change positions. I eventually want to be able to teach and want to learn new skills and make a difference in my work. It's just hard to remind myself of this on the way to work when I feel like I want to puke and the night before when I cant sleep lol! It's got to get better. I watch the other nurses and it's amazing how they just know how to react in situations and watch them do procedures with ease! I can't wait until I can do this. I would love to be a preceptor and have a nursing student. I know to be able to do this I have to learn and pay my dues. I just wish I could fast forward this first year lol:yes: Thanks for listening.

jamisaurus

154 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 1 years experience.

This is exactly how I felt leaving orientatioN as a new grad in the ICU!! Trust me it will be okay. It sounds like your coworkers have faith in you-- if they thought you were dangerous, they would have given you more time. Remember, just because you are out of orientation doesn't mean you have to do everything on your own-- ask questions, and ask for help when needed!! Even nurses with years of experience ask each other's advice. Take it one day at a time, and you'll feel confidence slowly start to build and that year will be over.

Specializes in Med/surg, Onc.

You will be okay! Take your time, keep asking questions. Day by day it does get easier.

LabyrinthRn

7 Posts

Thanks so much for the reply! It helps to know that others have been through the same thing and made it out the other side!

Specializes in Oncology, Medicine. Has 8 years experience.

Oh, Labyrinth, I am so there with you! New grad here. Accepted a job on a very busy medical oncology unit at a large hospital that gets the most challenging patients. This was my specialty of choice. Oh my, phew... I has been so so intense! Our patient require a LOT of PRN interventions in addition to scheduled meds/procedures. So there is only so much you can cluster. And squeezing in documentation is an art (well, for me at least).

I can't sleep after shifts, because I keep "working" in my dreams, restless. A number of times, I had to tell myself through the sleep that I am OFF the shift now and I can sleep. But get into the loop of trying to get things done and being anxious of failing in some way.

I have 2 days of orientation left. Can't even write this I am so freaked out. If I look at the facts, yes I have been getting all the tasks and documentation done by end of shift with the exception of a couple days when I had late admissions. Yes, I have not had any misses yet. Yes, everybody is supportive and have been telling me I am doing well and am ready. But that IS NOT how I feel. Far from it. I feel that all of this has been possible because I have my preceptor available to ask questions, run logic by, help trouble shoot when needed and sometimes giving that occasional morphine or insulin when I am tied up with another patient.

I can not imagine being on my own! But I keep telling myself that all I can do is my best. All I can do is my best. And trust that it will work out one day at a time, just like it does for most.

Good luck! Would love to hear how it goes.

LabyrinthRn

7 Posts

I feel your Pain INN_777! Let me point out one thing YOU ARE NEVER ALONE. You feel like it, but even experienced nurses have to ask for help we just have to ask for it a little more It is frustrating for me. I felt like several times this weekend I was just waiting to be helped because I had no idea what to do, but we are still learning. I survived! There were times I thought about hiding in a broom closet!!!! lol BUT Just keep reminding yourself your human and can only manage one thing at a time. And Prioritize! Sometimes that means stopping for a second and re-working the plan instead of rushing full steam ahead! Have your preceptor look ahead on the schedule and see who will be working with you when your on your own. That way she can give you the names of people who can help you. My preceptor did this and I ran to them and they were great. If you have a charge nurse use her she is great! My very first day I arrived about 45 minutes early for my shift so I could look up labs if they were back, medicines for the day, and get an overall idea of what I was up against. Also, if I had any questions, I was ready in report. Keep me posted I want to know how everything goes! Another piece of advice is take something comforting to work. What ever it is. I have 2 things. One: I wear a cross I am a spiritual person and two: I have a The Walking Dead (TV show in case you don't know) cup that I drink coffee out of in the mornings. It has Rick and Darryl on it :yes: When I got overwhelmed I took a few seconds went to the nurses desk looked at my cup and drank my coffee and I had a moment of ZEN ;-)

Take time for you! As crazy as it gets you have to use the bathroom and at least have a snack! How can you function and take care of others if you are not taking care of yourself! You got this!

Specializes in Oncology, Medicine. Has 8 years experience.

Broom closet - haha! Glad you didn't opt for the biohazard room:)

Thanks for the support and wonderful recommendations. My asst manager and educator mentioned that they assign "buddy" for people coming off orientation - someone who has the same schedule and could help you with questions. I pray to get one:)

I try to do something comforting before and after the shift, like have a nice snack in the car and listen to a non-nursing audio book that I can look forward to.

Glad its working out for your one step at a time. Keep going!

Thanks again!

_Skittles_

120 Posts

Hey now you are NEVER alone. Nursing is a team sport and your coworkers are there as resources. You can do this!

Specializes in Oncology, Medicine. Has 8 years experience.

Tomorrow is my first (night) shift off orientation. Three in a row. Still feel so raw, so raw. And my last few shifts on orientation (granted dayshifts) have been so absolutely insane. Although my educator and management assured me that these were not your typical shifts, I am worried sick. Crying now.

Gonna go for a hike and hope that helps...

jamisaurus

154 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 1 years experience.

I'm sorry your first nights were so crazy! I'm glad you're taking a hike to decompress. Can you call a friend from nursing school who will be a good listener so you can get things off your chest? It will get better!!

scaredsilly, BSN, RN

1 Article; 1,161 Posts

I hope your day went well! let us know, please!

We have ALL gone through this, and we are all scared when it's our turn! Remember the nurses that trained you will still be there! You are not alone, you will have them to answer questions and to help you!

Once the initial shock of being on your own wears off, it feels pretty good. I am 8 months in, and I still feel incompetent, but it is getting better.

Specializes in Oncology, Medicine. Has 8 years experience.

It was my last dayshifts ON orientation that were crazy. So I am bracing for my first solo shifts. Hoping nights will be a little more sane. But still really worried. Thanks Jamisaurus!