New Grad Stupids - page 2
Help! I am a new grad and my co-workers have forgotten what it's like. I'm not sure how this can ethically be done, but I need to hear the stupidest things you experience nurses have done, please.... Read More
Oct 14, '00Occupation: Nursing Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 4Colleagues,
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Harvard Medical School
Oct 14, '00Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 96Don't sweat it. My brother once told me that if they did not think we could do job, they would not let out on the floor. I doubt that sometimes still after 6 years. Experienced nurses are not perfect in any means. I can't even remember all the things I have done over the years.
Oct 14, '00Occupation: hospice nurse Joined: Sep '00; Posts: 73When I was a new gread, I was so sure of myself(that was BEFORE I began practicing. I remember having a patient w/ an NG tube who c/o being nauseated, bloated stomach, green-at-the-gills(you get the picture!). It wasn't until he began projectile vomiting and I called my preceptor that I found out the common sense in this instance-hook up the NG to suction!!! All stopped as the stomach contents were emptied and the bowel decompressed, but did I feel like a fool. I've forgotten (probably conveniently!) most of my new grad follies, but give yourself time, develop a sense of humor, and NEVER be afraid to be honest about doing the right thing (i.e. ask for help).
Oct 15, '00Occupation: RN Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 33; Likes: 1Hang in there. You are not stupid. We have all done stupid things, we either don't remember or won't admit to Eventually, it will all "click" for you and you will be an excellent nurse. It is an adjustment period and given the circumstances you describe on your unit that adjustment may just take a little longer. Have faith in your knowledge base, your training and yourself. There will always be bad shifts, days... weeks. But just remember why you are there.
Oct 15, '00Occupation: RN Specialty: 15 year(s) of experience ; Joined: Jul '00; Posts: 639; Likes: 70Nurse- do you know what day today is?
Patient- Um, can't quite remember...
Nurse- do you know who the president is?
Patient- John F. Kennedy
Nurse- okay, do you know where you are?
Patient- I am right here.
Okay, so not a great question to assess patient orientation. But it was great for a laugh in a stressful day.
Oct 15, '00Occupation: RN Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 2; Likes: 1This is my 16th year as a labor nurse... BUT I can still remember my funniest experience as a student nurse in labor. I was told to " go shave all the hair you can see down below" on a patient having her third baby, I wanted to be a really good nurse, so I started to shave very slowly and carefully, well....the baby started to crown and I shaved the top of the baby's head before I realized what was about to happen! Lucky for me, the mom was amused by the "reverse mohawk" haircut I gave her baby.
I have NEVER forgotten being a new nurse-hang in there-we all need all the nurses we can find!
Oct 15, '00Occupation: RN Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 13; Likes: 1When I was in nursing school, I worked as a tech on the peds floor. I was taking a rectal temp on an infant (one of the first times) As I inserted the thermometer, the baby passed gas. Not realizing this was what had happened, my busy 'nursing school brain' thought I perforated the infants bowel(i only had it about 1/4 inch in)Got the nurse in to check the baby out.
Recently I went into one of my many favorite CF patient's room. She had collected about a weeks worth of OJ cups - you know, the ones with the foil top you peel back to open - and stored them in her cubby. By the time I found them, they had all gone so sour that the foil top was a tight dome ready to explode. As I picked one up and warned her not to drink any, I began shaking the OJ. It exploded all over my hair, face, - luckily it only got my patients legs. We were on the floor rolling and laughing our butts off!!!!!!!!!!
Oct 16, '00Occupation: Registered Nurse Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 15; Likes: 1When I was a new grad I had a patient who was a bit confused and quite uncooperative, and receiving NG tube feedings. I worked night shift, and when I changed the tube-feeding bag, I put blue food color in the formula. I didn't realize that just a few drops would be enough, so I ended up putting A LOT more in than was necessary. The solution turned REALLY blue, but I figured that the food coloring was harmless and there was not point in throwing out good formula just because it was too blue (it was actually kind of pretty). I came back to work the next night, and the nursing assistant called me in to help change Mrs. X's diaper. Well she had very loose stools that were neon blue (they practically glowed in the dark). Not only was her poop blue, but it was in very generous quantities and all over the place. In the bedding, on Mrs. X's legs and rear, on her hands(?!) To make matters worse, Mrs. X weighed well over 300 pounds, and was completely unwilling to assist in turning while we cleaned her up. The color would not come off her skin, and her rear end was stained bright blue. This scene was repeated several times during the shift. In the morning, Mr. X had the gall to accuse me of failing to turn his wife or clean her up all night. A few days later I noticed her husband giving me dirty looks, and the aide I worked with that night mysteriously was not assigned to any of the same patients with me for months coincidence?). My advice now is: just a few drops will do it!
Oct 16, '00Occupation: EN/student RN Joined: Jun '00; Posts: 25Your stories are all great, gave me some great tips on what NOT to do. bbqchick, you sound like you are really stressing! I finish my degree in ONE WEEK, have 2 more lectures this week, one more assignment to finish by Friday & one more exam next week so I am getting a little anxious now. I am always the one hardest on me, I put high expectations on myself. I will never forget what one facilitator said to me on my last clinical placement. It has helped me alot. "its ok NOT to know something, as long as you know where to find the answer" Use the other staff and your procedure manuals. Set yourself tasks to look up stuff in journals or on the net. I know I will be stressing too and the first time another nurse rolls her eyes or sniggers I'll probably want to bury my head in the sleuce, but I am prepared and will keep asking myself what the rationales are for what I am doing, at least it gives me a moment to think before I do something stupid. cheers Lee
Oct 16, '00Occupation: RN, Inpatient Hospice Specialty: 17 year(s) of experience in Hospice, Critical Care ; From: US ; Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 1,664; Likes: 177Actually, you're a step ahead in knowing that you don't know everything. The nurses I know prefer the new employee who is willing to ask questions rather than the one who walks on the unit like he/she knows it all. Find a mentor, if you can; doesn't have to be an "official position" but just someone you can trust who will help you over the rought spots. Despite how some nurses act, NO ONE was born with an RN license in their hand! As far as stupid things I have done as an RN, there are many but I have blocked most of the from my brain! I remember, as a student, about to change a bag of IV fluids from one type to another and simply unplugged the IV bag while it was hanging on the pole....and provided myself with a D5-1/2NS shower! The patient and his wife just stared at me like I was a complete idiot (which was pretty much how I felt too!).
Oct 16, '00Occupation: Health Specialist/District Safety Coordinator Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 5I have a good (or sick, depending) story about clinicals during my time as a student.
First, I am a guy, and that in itself is grounds for a multitude of stories...
I was "finished" with my two patients, and was moving around to see if anyone else needed help with theirs...I was asked by one of the other students (very prissy girl, by the way...princess we ALL called her) to help her with her patient...I said sure. We go into the room and there is a woman in her early 40's sitting up in bed....she looked a little pale, and asked for the emesis basin. I handed it to her, and she said she was going to throw up. She genly held the basin to her lower lip and started to spit.....she blew like Old Fathful. It hit the bottom of the basin, did a perfect fanning from the shape of the basin, shot out across the room in a fanning arc, and hit the left wall, back wall, the curtain between her and her roomie, got me, the "princess", and the nurse walking in the room at the perfect time. The nurse turned around and walked out of the room, "princess" started heaving and ran out of the room, and I was trying not to laugh (real nurses have demented, sick senses of humor, of course). She was very embarassed, and said, "I think I missed.". I said, "Ma'am, I don't think you missed a darn thing. We both started laughing, and the tension was broken.
Oct 16, '00Joined: Jul '00; Posts: 343; Likes: 24DragonLPN,
I had to say your story made me laugh and laugh. Gee, I went to school with Princesses identical twin... She works in the same hospital with me, and everytime I transfer a pt to her (I do ICU, she does tele/stepdown) I can hear her wrinkling up her nose as she finds out who is talking to her!!!! Thanks for the great image! HollyKate
Oct 16, '00Occupation: Community Nurse Joined: May '00; Posts: 2,493; Likes: 93ROTFLOL! Dragon, I'm wiping the tears off my cheeks!
BBQChick, if you want to read one of the stupid things I did (as a student), go to the Nursing Humour site on Allnurses, and check my post under Most Embarrassing Moment as A Student.
Most of the stuff I did as a beginning nurse I've conveniently forgotten, but there's quite a few moments as a student which are forever branded in my mind, most of them moments of stark terror.
Oh, yeah, I remember one now...I was doing night shift in a nursing home for an agency, and I had two patients in the same room with the same last name. I tell you, that's a receipe for disaster at 6 in the morning, when you've been up all night. I double checked everything (or so I thought) and STILL wound up giving the wrong med to the wrong patient. It was a narcotic, too! I was sweating bricks!
The patient was okay, and the nursing home administrator was so pleased with my honesty in owing up to what I'd done, calling the MD, etc. that she asked me to come back the next night!