Hi, and good evening!
I am just wondering about something as I lay here trying to rest. I am a new grad, and I have been working on a stepdown unit for 7-8 months now. Everyday before I have to go to work, I find myself dreading it.
I do enjoy giving patient care, and my coworkers are awesome with helping me and being kind. But so many other aspects are making me want to jump ship. For one, we are short-staffed and are losing people left and right. We don't have enough nurses or nursing assistants, and the ones we do have are ready to leave.
Two, management seems more concerned with 'customer care' than anything else. But how are you gonna satisfy patients if your workforce is suffering?
Three, I am generally on good terms with most of the nurses, but there are catty ones that often make me uncomfortable.
And often, our floor is very unorganized. Sometimes, we have to take care of patients in two separate pods. Sometimes, we end up with five. And the ED at our hospital is notorious for sending patients up in the worst conditions, which freak me out as a new nurse. Machines halfway do not work, or are missing. Other members of the healthcare team take their time with providing care (breathing treatment, EKG, etc.).
There are just too many things out of whack. Or maybe this is normal, and I'm not used to it?
I've already told myself to try to stay for at least a year, but I don't know if I can. Maybe I am just not cutout for hospital nursing? I shouldn't be so stressed out about going to work EVERY time. Right?
You're almost through your year! Surely you can last another 4 or 5 months!
It is not uncommon for new grads to hate their jobs -- hate their career even -- for the first year or two of nursing. It's so common we even have a whole forum dedicated to these kinds of issues! Being "so stressed" going to work EVERY time is sort of the norm for new grads. I used to cry all the way to work, but leaving wasn't an option for me as I had a husband to support. So I slogged through it and came out on the other end. For most people, right around the one year mark, something "clicks" and they begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Short staffing is a common problem almost anywhere you go. Losing nursing assistants is particularly common. If you think about it, it's a physically and emotionally demanding job for minimum wage. Can you blame them for wanting to jump ship? Losing new nurses is also terribly common. Most of them don't give their jobs or their career enough of a chance before quitting, but there's the usual "My boyfriend just got his dream job in Tulsa" or "My girlfriend matched at Johns Hopkins, so we'll be moving to Baltimore" or "I'm too homesick here away from my family so I'm moving back home." And then there's the folks who feel they're destined for bigger and better things and move on.
I'd encourage you to stick it out for a year. It may not fix the broken equipment issues (you ARE reporting the broken equipment through proper channels as soon as you discover it, aren't you? Waiting for someone else to do it isn't a good plan.) or the "Customer service" craze, but you'll feel better about nursing and about yourself and will have a better idea what you want to do next.