Hi - I am about to graduate from nursing school in about 2 months and I am really worried about being on my own. The main thing that worries me is that I won't remember everything I am supposed to like all of the medication stuff, IV compatibilities, lab values, signs and symptoms that mean something bad is about to happen. I guess I'm just scared of being the one who is totally responsible, with no help there, like the instructor that has always been there for us. Do nurses really remember all this stuff right when they get out, or is it just something that comes over time. I have always made good grades in nursing school, just scared about applying it to real life! Help!
Mar 2, '07
I feel the exact same way you do. I doubt myself constantly even though everyone tells me I do a great job. I make good grades, get good marks in clinical, have had my clinical paperwork used for examples to the NLN accreditors, I work as an intern, etc... but yes the responsibility scares me to death! lol But I think it's a GOOD thing to be nervous.
I was really scared to graduate but now I'm feeling excited because I think I'm ready to get "on with it" and start to get my groove down. Clinicals feel so frustrating because we are 10 students to 1 instructor. Everything is "hurry up and wait" I am very excited to work with a preceptor one on one so that they can confirm my clinical judgements. For instance with assessments. I ALWAYS doubt my assessing!
In clinical this week my pt has practically nonexistant pedal pulses. I "thought" I was feeeling them intermittant and for my first assessment I rated them 1+. for my 2nd assessment I felt maybe I was imagining them so I got the doppler. A fellow student who happens to be an LPN checked them and said "I agree, they are super weak but they ARE there intermittantly..quit doubting yourself!" So I think it will be sooo much better to be working with a preceptor who can help you determine if you are judging things correctly and can help guide you because you are working with the same pts... I just don't think you can get much of that with an instructor doing med passes with 10 students.
The nurses I work with tell me I am doing fine and it will all come together when I am using it all the time. I trust them and I feel that is what orientation is for...to bring everything you have learned together. And the learning won't stop.... you will be more focused though on one unit and can learn what are the common meds for that unit, where everything is, what the common disease processes are...and you can hone in on those things.
The hard part of nursing school is JUST when you get a comfort level you rotate, new floor, new diseases, new nurses, new instructor, etc. I'm ready to settle down and dive in and learn my specialty area.
My future nurse manager said "we will teach you a lot more. We don't expect you to know it all and have it all figured out. What I do expect is for you to work hard to learn. The first time you have a certain type patient you will have to go and study that and read about it, but I want you to be able to apply that the next time you have that type of patient"
but yea, being a little scared is a good thing! Gotta stay on our toes at all times!
Mar 2, '07
Getting out into the real world can be scary. Just make sure that you get plenty of orientation at whatever job you take. They can only teach you so much in NS, a huge portion of your eduation will end up taking place after you graduate and are on the job.
Wherever you go there should be a drug reference book. If not, take yours. There are a lot of reference materials out there. I'm an LPN (a new one) and have a great little pocket sized book called LPNotes. There's an RN version of it too. It has a lot of useful information and even has pages in it for you to jot assessment information on with a pen which will wipe off with an ETOH pad.
Congratulations and good luck on the NCLEX. Chin up, you'll both be fine...
Mar 2, '07
Thank you both for your encouragement. It helps to know that I am not on my own in my concerns! Sometimes everyone is so busy trying to look confident (myself included!) that you start to feel like you are the only one wondering how you will do when you get out there on your own.
Mar 2, '07
The more youre in a certain area,the more youll learn and remember drugs ,diseases ect. that you are working with.Ive been a nurse for a long time ,and if there is a new disease,drug,ect, I dont know ,I research about it in my old referance books or internet.No one can remember everything in thier head.It makes you a much better nurse to continue to learn.Plus you are required to.(CEUs)You are always going to come across something new.
Mar 12, '07
Firstly, concentrate your energy on passing the nclex (you'll need it!). Secondly, find comfort in knowing that initially, as a new nurse, you will be oriented and will work with a preceptor. Once you're on your own, always be safe and if you are not sure about something, ask! Don't be embarrassed to ask questions and refer to your books if needed. They say on average one need 6-12 months to feel comfortable in their new role. My orientation starts March 19. Good luck!
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