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First night of clinicals


First and foremost, I survived!! I was a total stress-case until we actually got there and got started. My first rotation is in a nursing home 3p-11p, and I was there over an hour early. So, I sat in my car and did some reading while I waited.

There are about 15 of us total, which is split into 2 clinical groups. We all met in the lobby and waited for our clinical instructors to come and get us. We first went to a conference-type room where we had a mini-orientation which was done by one of the nurse educators for the facility. She went over general information, what to do in certain situations, and new coding systems they have for charts (for example, if the patient's chart has a shooting star on it, they are a fall risk).

The facility provides our meal during our shift, so next we went to eat. It was pretty good - hospitalesque but good and did I mention FREE...I find that most free things have "added" flavor. :chuckle Anyway, I sat with my usual group of girls and we talked about our excitement and nervousness and wondered what to expect when we were done with our meal. After we ate, we went back to the conference room.

Our instructors came in with all of the materials to show us how to set up a continuous feed and bolus feed via a g-tube. (This and doing a full-set of vitals are the first 2 skills we have to pass) We talked about everything, they were very patient with us while we asked about a million questions and then they brought in the cardex (I think I am calling it by the right name) files for our patients. We are each assigned a patient that we will work with for our first 8 weeks. So, we have a form to help us learn to look at the information and sort through it. So, we all get to work.

My instructor hand me the file...I look....yes!!! My patient has zero stickers....no fall risk, no DNR, no dementia. Wow, I'm lucky. Then I open the file....well, I guess they ran out of stickers. The patient has a little bit of everything including dementia with behavior issues including striking the staff.

I suck it up and figure that at least I will learn a lot from this patient. I start reviewing the file and making notes. The further I get into the file, the more concern I have. This guy has a lot wrong with him - will I be able to handle it? Doubt sneaks up on me and I don't really notice it until I'm getting ready to go up to the floor for the tour of the unit.

Now, my clinical instructor (and the other instructor that is there) are both very aware that we are all scared to death so before we head up to the floor, they stop and tell us.."You can do this, if you want this, you can do this, and we will help you in every way". WOW...Thanks! That is just what I need to hear.

We did our tour of the floor, and then we were sent home until next week...on the way home, I say a little prayer thanking God for intuitive clinical instructors.

So, I'm just taking a deep breath, reading my materials for next week and telling myself, "You can do this!".

Hope everyone else had a good weekend!!! :wink2:


Specializes in CTICU/CVICU. Has 4 years experience.

Congrats on your first night! :yeah:

YES, YOU CAN DO THIS!!! It will be fine...the first few clinicals are always a little...I guess uneasy? The unknown is what's so scary, but as time goes on, the confidence will increase!!! GOOD LUCK AND ENJOY IT!!!

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