Sorry this is so long..............I have been a nurse for almost 5 years. I started in oncology and it was just okay...I didn't love it but knew it wasn't home for me. Had my dreams set on NICU and couldn't wait to get a job there. After a year and a half in oncology I got a job in a Level III NICU. Spent about 9 months there...hated it. Dreaded work, knew it wasn't for me, and I wanted out. At this time I thought I maybe I would leave nursing altogether. I was discouraged because other people loved their jobs and I didn't love mine. Maybe that meant I wasn't supposed to be a nurse afterall. I decided on a whim to apply for a position in the OR. It was a different type of nursing so maybe that was more my style. And I loved it...I enjoyed my coworkers, I felt comfortable, I was happy.
Then I started to get an itch to go back to school..to do MORE with my career while I was still young. I considered NP..but couldn't imagine leaving the OR setting...so I thought I would be a Clinical Nurse Educator in the OR...or even a manager one day. Then I started thinking CRNA...I worked side by side with them every day...I had seen A LOT of what the job entails and it looked challenging. All the CRNAs seemed very happy and it made me feel inspired that I could do it. I applied for some jobs and landed a job in a Level 1 Trauma/Surgical ICU. I'm still on orientation and it has been a struggle...the transition from OR to ICU has been huge...I have been faced with the reality that I am rusty on everything to do with bedside nursing.
But I've stuck it out almost 3 months and my orientation ends in about a month...but I don't enjoy this. I miss the OR and every day want to go back. I love to learn and love to be challenged but I feel like my unit hasn't been very conducive for the best experience. First of all..in the 3.5-4 months I will be on orientation, I will have had 8 PRECEPTORS. I have been tossed around and of course everyone does things differently. That alone has been the hardest part. Secondly, my educator has been all over the place. She makes my schedule..only 2 weeks in advance so I never really know how to plan my weeks, she keeps adding and changing my class requirements..just when I think I am done, she adds on another class or requirement that is due shortly after she tells me. My managers have apologized on the educator's behalf saying she is "stressed" and "stretched thin"..but no one really seems to be supporting me?! I don't feel like I can go to anyone and say "hey..I am not getting a great experience"....and lastly, I have been planning on working nights...I worked nights on the floor and in the NICU and I know it's a better place to get your feet wet. And financially, I need the money as I took a pay cut to come to the ICU...Now they want one of the orientees (3 of us total) to go to dayshift when we are off orientation. Financially...I will not be able to afford this..I will have to pick up OT or pick up in the OR. And for my sanity, I hate dayshift in the ICU. I feel like I just run all day long and can't keep my head above water.
I am just so disappointed in this experience. I feel I have learned SOME but I have only had 2 patients on pressors and that was my first 2 weeks on the unit. My preceptor and I have been pulled to another ICU and to progressive care. I have spent a whole shift with 1 patient who was downgraded to acute care and we never picked up another patient. I have admitted 3 or 4 patients, all who were stable. This isn't teaching me anything!!!! I need sick patients so that when I am alone..I feel somewhat capable.I'm so frustrated and while I still want to be a CRNA...maybe I don't want it bad enough. I can still see myself as a manager or Nurse Educator in the OR and being happy. But this is just frustrating beyond belief. Should I go back to the OR, stick it out, or look for another ICU job completely? Please advice....