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  1. The_Muffintime

    Having issues with being a "babyfaced" nurse.

    Ash you're getting a lot of crap from the people here but that's normal for this site - there will always be those who will cut anybody down who's asking for help on allnurses. "Get some help, honey," attitudes dripping with sickly-sweet sarcasm is the best you'll do with them, so ignore that stuff and focus on the people who have genuinely shown that they care about you and offered some advice. Personally I don't know how to help because I don't have the experience yet, but I will say that coming here and talking about it shows that you're strong. You want to be a great nurse and that's 95% of the battle. Being mediocre isn't good enough for you and you want to be seen as a nurse deserving of respect. Well, you are deserving of respect! If this post offends some people then they're most likely the bullies that I warned you against, ash. I will apologize for a lot of things but I will never apologize for standing up to a bully.
  2. The_Muffintime

    can i still be a nurse if i pass out from shots?

    I think you'll be okay. See if you can practice on a willing participant first, and if you're not queasy at all then you'll be fine! It's totally normal to be really nervous the first time you take blood from a real patient. I personally know at least three nurses who can't give blood because getting stuck makes them super-queasy.
  3. The_Muffintime

    Antiplatelets - what do I need to know?

    For a patient on Plavix, for example, do I need to watch the coags just to make sure they don't go too high and cause severe bleeding? I know I need to be ready for signs of TTP and to keep track of the CBC (obviously including the platelet count), but I was wondering about the PT/INR and PTT, assuming the patient isn't on any concurrent blood thinner. How closely (often) do I need to watch these? How does aspirin factor in? Is it safe and generally accepted as normal to continue ASA maintenance therapy while on Plavix? What about use as an analgesic - teach the patient to stay away from all NSAIDs like I do with warfarin and heparin? Another question - how long after the initial bolus and d/cing the drip does tpa continue to exert an effect? What about reteplase? My understanding is that clearance is extremely fast so it shouldn't seem to be a danger for a long time, but better safe than sorry.
  4. I don't mean in a malicious way. I mean, do the docs and some nurses at your clinical site talk to you like you have no more knowledge than a layperson and express surprise when you start asking actually relevant questions in the morning? I don't hold it against the docs because 1) they're making an effort to teach me and 2) they never went to nursing school anyway, so why would they know what we learn there? They are such a deep well of knowledge and I don't always have the chance to plumb those depths - so why are we talking about how "the stomach has folds inside it"??? I feel like my education is being devalued into dust. I was actually handed the same leaflet today that's given to the patients to take home as education material. The leaflet contained a simplistic diagram of the lower GI tract and I was told that it would be a good idea to bring it into the procedure room for a colonoscopy (lest I forget where the sigmoid colon is or mistake the large intestine for the lungs or something). I never show that it bothers me, and I'm never rude or unprofessional as a result. I'll simply stay quiet and ask the questions I have as they come to mind. I don't wonder if the person I'm talking to is reevaluating things - in fact I make it a point to forget the slight as soon as it happens and only to think about it again after I get home. I'll just refuse to change my habits because little is expected of me, just like I'd imagine any of you would do. I'm feeling salty right now, so please excuse me for that XD...It's not in my nature to insist that I deserve better treatment, but I think in these cases that I do. Physicians will be physicians, but coming from the RNs this treatment feels odd. I'm living proof that pretty much anyone who reaches this point in nursing school is going to know something. Anyway, does anyone else feel they often have to prove to some people that they're not ignorant as a child before being spoken to like a soon-to-be RN?
  5. Guys, a lot of you are right - I'm too hard on myself and I'll focus on things that don't matter unless I give them credence. The proof is in the pudding, however, and the fact that I was obsessing about this is enough evidence that I'm not so smart XD Thank you for all your wonderful contributions and wise words. They were required at that time when they were offered and I appreciate every keystroke. I understand that it doesn't matter much how smart someone is - their work ethic and stubbornness to stick to things are so much more important. I'm not going to waste my time and energy anymore obsessing over nonsense.
  6. I'm in my penultimate quarter - advanced med surg. I've done well through the program but honestly I always feel like I know almost nothing. It's hard to accurately gauge how true that actually is. @shibaoowner, you're totally right. I do undervalue myself sometimes and have a hard time maintaining proper perspective in some cases. I really need to give myself the same kind of slack that I allow others. I meant it when I said that I don't need or want the validation of others. The problem is that I require it of myself and I'm very stingy. I've felt that being a great caregiver requires above average intelligence and problem solving skills and I stand by that. I'm not an idiot but I am not ok with being anything but great because I would want nothing less of the people taking care of my loved ones.
  7. The_Muffintime

    Nurse extern in ED and struggling to fit in!!

    There isn't really anything I can do to try and help you without knowing more. With regards to your threatened title I think I can relate but I don't want to make any assumptions either. Best of luck!
  8. I'm editing my post with a preface because I thought of something that's crucial for you to know about me before you read this. I am good with the English language. My grasp of the written word is, in my opinion, above average. This skill does NOT change anything I believe in the following post. Also yes, I did just post this to Reddit but I don't expect many replies over there because new posters' threads get buried extremely quickly. The thread title says that I'm not intelligent. I stand by this statement but please do not misconstrue that to mean that I think I'm "stupid." Like the title says I am relatively certain that I'm less intelligent than the average human being (at least in the West - I know very few people from the middle east outside of Israel and from the far east). I'm not ashamed to be "stupid," but every time I make the point that I don't possess above-average intelligence, I get treated as if I just said I wanted to commit suicide or murder a puppy. Not everyone can be possessed of "above average" mental faculties. It's right there in the name. Some of us are lower on the totem pole, and many of you are higher. Even much higher. I'm starting to feel patronized every time someone tells me I'm "smart." I don't believe it and would go so far as to say that I possess such a profound lack of "common" sense that my everyday life is being profoundly affected by that deficit. I'm currently a couple of months away from finishing nursing school and sitting for the boards that would theoretically make me an RN but I'm no longer sure I should take the test. I am confident that I could pass the test but I am also scared that I might hurt somebody if I were to get my RN license and begin to practice independently. I don't want to hurt or kill anyone because I've made a terrible mistake. Don't I have a responsibility right NOW to protect the public by keeping myself away from them? I'm NOT trying to be a martyr. I wouldn't want an idiot to take care of me in the hospital so what right do I have to inflict myself upon others? It feels dishonest, dangerous, and plain /wrong/. I'm not sure if I'll always be able to assess my capabilities the way I can at this moment so I feel a sense of urgency to do something /now/ to ensure that I don't put myself in a position where I am likely to hurt somebody. Why us it so darned controversial to admit that you don't possess a special mind? What's wrong with being average or below? I'm not so much of an idiot that I'm not able to recognize when a problem exists so I feel that I'm being condescended when someone tries to tell me I'm "so smart," whatever the hell that means. I'm not ashamed to be relatively unintelligent - after all, even a stupid human is a super genius whilst standing among the Earth's fauna!!! Compared to the animals with whom we share our home almost every one of us is a genius of relative stature that would by make the smartest people we know to have ever existed, in terms of relative cognitive stature, simply and devastatingly ordinary. From an emotional perspective I don't feel that require the constant validation of telling myself or having others tell me that I'm smarter or better than others. I'm always trying to be the best version of myself that I can be and if I can manage that then i'll be proud of myself for the accomplishment. Being the best that I can be feels like a noble goal worth pursuing and dedicating my life to, and right now being the best that I can be feels like it probably requires quitting school and finding a job that won't lead to others' deaths if I make a mistake. So again I ask - /why/ is it so damned taboo to say that I don't think I have such a flippin' smart mind that non-superlative descriptors can adequately capture my condition? I'm not putting myself down and I don't feel terrible and self-conscious about my less developed intellect. I have other qualities that make me stand out from the crowd and my life is generally happy. I'd rather be happy and stupid than miserable and intelligent. I am a hard worker. I'm honest and sincere. I care about people and treat them with respect. These qualities are enough for me and I am proud of myself for possessing them. I feel quite discouraged over the fact that all of these positive qualities I possess are implicitly deemed unimportant in the fact of my somewhat "intellectually-challenged" condition. For some reason it's acceptable to point out your own faults but being realistic about your (low) intelligence is a social faux pas on the level of streaking at the Super Bowl. I'll reiterate: we CANNOT all be "smart," because to me that word implies possession of a superior intellect and unless we're comparing ourselves to apes or to fish it should become clear to us that not everybody can possess a "superior" intellect. I realize that I haven't said /why/ I'm so sure that I'm not a super-genius, but I don't think that's so important; at least not when compared to the points I /did/ make. I'm sorry for the long post, but if I'm going to give up a career that I truly, TRULY love then I need to be sure that it's the right thing to do. I've never quite loved anything that wasn't another human being nearly as much as I love nursing. Actually, it's not even a close call. So I'd like to hear the consensus. Is the self-awareness of my below average intelligence a good reason to quit? It seems to me like a black and white and simple question with an equally simple answer: I don't belong a spot where I'm making decisions that will affect another person's life, be it positively or negatively. Nothing else matters. My ego is a tiny and almost 100% unimportant droplet of water in the bucket that contains the water that is our responsibility to treat of other people safely, respectfully, consistently, and to the very best of our abilities.. It /doesn't/ matter because if I'm not able to be safe with patients then I don't belong within fifty feet of one, and if I can't treat a patient in a way that allows them to comfortably "open up" around me then I run the very real and now even elevated risk of being lied to, having crucial parts of the story left out, or forgetting something that we should remember or better still have written down. TLDR: I'm not very smart (nor am I egregiously stupid. I believe that I am simply below average with respect to my intellectual potential. I want to know two things, one of which is extremely important due to possible consequences that will reach far, far beyond the scope of significance that most of us are used to (have i terrified you into silence yet? I hope not!): 1) Why is it so damned bad to admit that you're not smarter than the average bear? By DEFINITION some of us are on the left side of the curve while others sit on the opposite side. In my personal opinion, to be ashamed of our own genetics is not just a colossal waste of good time but also possibly disrespectful to our own ancestors. But what do I know? I'm just a dumb guy who puts on some different pairs of scrubs a few days a week! 2) Should I quit nursing school now while I still haven't hurt anyone? While I still have yet to actually /kill or maim/ anyone? Please don't underestimate the difficulty I had when choosing to ask this question. Nursing is the first thing that's ever made me feel passionate. It's the only thing I've ever studied that made me feel like I could do it for the rest of my life and never run out of questions and never have the river that is my passion for nursing dry up. Asking you all if I should quit is quite honestly one of the hardest things I've EVER done. To have the object of my obsession be pulled out from under me and taken away forever would be more than difficult. More than devastating. I don't know if the English language has a word that could describe what I would feel if i had to quit. But I would still do it. I mean that. Thank you so much for reading my post (or the TLDR version!). If you reply - which I sincerely hope you decide to do because each of us possesses a unique perspective shaped by our own lives' experiences, then it would probably be helpful if you told me that you read the entire post or that you just read the TLDR. Don't be afraid of offending me, because you likely won't do so no matter what you say!
  9. The_Muffintime

    Becoming a CNA has helped me so much in school

    Thanks, Simplistic. I do want to add that this job is helping me by showing me exactly what I *don't* want to be doing after I graduate. Also, it's probably worth mentioning that my friends/colleagues and also my instructor (whom I had both Med-Surg 1 and now Med-Surg 2) have noticed this change. My favorite reaction was the teacher's observation: "What happened to you? In the six months since we finished Med-Surg you went from being an apprehensive nursing student in there to carrying yourself like a true professional. Keep it up." That kind of positive reinforcement is worth its weight in gold and can be the thing that keeps you going during those times that you feel like it's just too much. I don't think I need to inform anybody here of that fact! The more I learn the more I understand just how ignorant I am of *everything*. It would be terrifying if *everybody* didn't tell me that's how they felt.
  10. The_Muffintime

    Confident in clinicals - but hard to relate

    "I kind of skipped through reading but I think I got the gist of your post." - I can't blame you! I had so much caffeine and adrenaline coursing through me last night that I went nuts with the verbiage. I get so damned wordy in text when I'm hyper. Thanks for the words of support, FNI. You gave me some good reassurance on feelings that I had already started to have, like you noticed. I do want to make it clear that when I say "connect" with these 20-25 year old female nurses, I'm not talking about connecting with them, lol. I'm thinking ahead to what the dynamic might be like wherever I start working when I graduate in four months and in my opinion things are always better if you can find something that can help you relate to your coworkers and they to you. Thanks again. You hit the nail on the head when you said that I'm not at clinical to make friends. I'm there to network, definitely, but friends? Nah.
  11. The_Muffintime

    Med-Surg Floor Nursing

    Great advice, Ruby! For the record, the people I was talking about who say skip the floor have largely been new RNs I've met at clinical on psych units, Endo, and ER. There are a few others. You hit the nail right on the head with what you said about experienced nurses. My instructors with whom I've talked about this and one other experienced CCU nurse are basically the only ones telling me not to skip the floor. I'm wont to trust their perspective, as well as yours, Ruby.
  12. The_Muffintime

    Men's shoes for nursing school.

    I wear a pair of all white New Balances with a built-in gel insert. I made sure to get wide shoes even though none of my other shoes are wide and have found that it keeps my feet feeling good even after standing for 12 hours. It's important to give your feet room to expand if you're going to stand for that long.
  13. The_Muffintime

    How difficult are Intro to Bio and Intermediate Algebra?

    I tutor Algebra 2 and I can say with certainty that I have never met a single person who wasn't capable of passing the class with a good grade. Most of the people who come to me for help are terrified of math and that is their greatest problem when it comes to doing well in the class. I make sure to work on their fear of mathematics as much as actually how to solve each problem because once that fear is overcome the mathematics ability comes far easier and quicker. Don't be afraid!
  14. My father did for a while...that is, until he had a stroke and I saved his life. Never in my life have I tasted a more bitter bit of schadenfreude. He's on his way to a full recovery and we've never been closer. He even admitted to me that he had no idea that nurses knew and did so much before he had his stroke and started to take an interest in what I'm learning. The selfish part of me is happy but the greater part of me would give it all away if it would mean that he never suffered a CVA. Anyway, other than my father, everyone has been extremely supportive. I field health-related questions at least twice a week. This ain't the 50's anymore!
  15. The_Muffintime

    What are your motivators for pursuing nursing school?

    Intense hatred of my first career in business (and equal dislike of office jobs) combined with a lifelong fascination with hospitals. It didn't hurt that I recognized that nursing can provide an incredible return on investment if you go certain ways with it. Even your basic new grad med-surg nurse will be making decent enough money. Anyone who says that money didn't play a part (triply so for physicians) is either lying or a rare breed of human being. Nurses don't usually get rich, but we do well enough. It's not hard to make a comfortable living as an RN and there's always the option of going back to school to teach or go for the cash and become a CRNA, NP or some other kind of APRN such as a nurse midwife. Doesn't hurt that we're keeping people alive.