I know nothing!! - page 4

Hello all, I'm in my third semester in a 2 year program and I'm so worried. My grades are okay (nothing special but okay) but it's clinical I'm worried about. I seem to be doing fine (my evals... Read More

  1. by   i<3u
    Quote from rnfrommn
    i'm 3rd semester in 2 year program and i hate...i mean, despise going to clinical. i absolutely dread it. bostonjenn, i thought someone had jumped into my body just now while i was studying hematology and posted all my exact thoughts under your name .

    fraud: :yeahthat: totally! i feel like the things i'm doing can be done by...well, a robot , i guess. oooh...i took someone's vitals (it's even more rewarding when a machine or robot does it all for you)...and, oh, wow...i changed somebody's bed while they were in the bathroom (just like a real housekeeper!)...and check it out: i put this funky-looking thing in my ears (just like the one i had when i was a kid) and listened to some funny noises in a couple different places:smiley_aa ...& in a couple hours, i get to cut up somebody's meat and make small talk with them while they eat (just like when i used to babysit!)...and just before bedtime, i get to look at a list of pills, pop them out of their package....all by myself ...put them in somebody's hand & watch them swallow them! i'm a... ? i'm not saying i'm above any of these tasks...i just want to feel the way a nurse is supposed to feel.

    i always feel like i'm doing...okay ...but that if another student was here, she'd/he'd be doing more thorough assessments, or understand my pt's condition better, or know exactly why they're receiving each and every medication they're getting.

    and my grades are fine, too. we're pass/fail for clinical now, but last semester, i even got an a...felt completely undeserving. this year, i finally got the guts to confide in my instructor & tell her how i feel (basically word for word what jenn said) and she told me that a lot of being a nurse is being eyes and ears:redlight: . knowing the hob should be up, knowing if someone's loc is changing, knowing what looks off in an assessment, knowing what vs to check if, say, pt says he's short of breath, etc. it made me feel a little better...this instructor is not known to coddle.

    my biggest hang-up with clinical is initial pt assessments . every day as i'm walking from my car to the hospital, i mentally picture myself running at full speed, screaming, and just charging into my pts room , getting my vitals, doing a quick head to toe, seeing if they need anything, then getting out! it's my most dreaded part of clinical and i just want to get it over with asap. and i don't mind sitting with my pts or talking with them, or giving baths, etc...i just loathe initial assessments . i feel like i don't know what i'm doing. and i always forget at least 2-3 things to check before i leave the room...and i have to go back in, explain to the pt that even though i told them i could leave them alone for awhile to rest, that now i have to "quick" check their pedal pulses, or skin turgor, or lower extremity strength.

    you know what i would :heartbeat ? one or two days to just shadow a nurse. watch everything she/he does...what assessments they do and why, etc.

    i have to believe that once i become a , and am employed at a certain place for awhile, i'll be much more comfortable with these things. if not...god help us all ! this was a bit of a rant...thanks for reading - i'm just so excited that other people feel the same way that i do :icon_hug: (sniff, little tear). everyone i'm in school with just looooves going to clinical. not this girl.
    wow, i thought i was the only person that felt this way about assessments! i have to mentally go through the points that i usually miss in assessments, so that i won't miss them again. i end up missing something anyway...urgh! why do i feel like i don't know what i'm doing when listening to lung sounds? i just finished my first semester and i'm not familiar with some of the sounds as someone in their last semester. or i feel like i don't hear anything at all, when i probably should (after reading the pt's previous assessment findings). i really hope that i get better this semester. i have med-surg and ob. they'll expect more of us and i just feel like i'm going to make a mistake on something sooo simple like an assessment finding.
  2. by   NCRNMDM
    Perhaps it's not that you know nothing, it's just that you simply don't function optimally under the pressures of clinical. During my last clinical there were people in my group who could tell us (the fellow students) everything about a procedure, but when put on the spot by the instructor they totally blanked. They couldn't even remember what basic supplies they needed. Some could spout off every last detail about a drug as long as the instructor wasn't there, but when she stepped into the picture, they couldn't even remember how to pronounce the name. I am fortunate enough to function very well under pressure and in high-stress situations, but I know that everyone isn't like this.

    If you are passing your classes, and your clinical evaluations are good, then you do know what you are doing. Remind yourself of this often. Don't get cocky, or over-confident, because that's just setting yourself up to make a mistake. Do, however, remind yourself that your clinical evaluations are good, and your grades are passing. You know this information, you know how to take care of your patients, and you are gaining more knowledge each day.

    Talk to your clinical instructor about your feelings. Approach him/her, and tell him/her about how you feel. Be honest, and say that you sometimes feel as though you can't even answer the most basic questions. Tell him/her that you really just need a pep-talk, and an honest assessment of how you are doing. Ask him/her if there are specific areas you should improve on, and also ask about what areas he/she thinks you excel at. You may be surprised at what your instructor says. While you may feel that you aren't performing well at all, your clinical instructor may feel that you are an exceptional student. Keep your head up, and don't be too hard on yourself. You are still learning, and you are still in school for that reason. You aren't in the real world yet, so don't worry about it yet. You can worry over that when the time comes. Good luck, and cut yourself some slack!