What you are feeling is just normal. When I graduated 35 years ago, our instructors told us to go out and take a private duty case on the 11 Pm to 7 am shift. Then they said contact one of them in the morning. Well I did. I had a major headache from severe fright. I just felt so scared. The case I had must have had 20 IV piggy Backs in 8 hours. It was a teaching hospital in NYC. The interns and residents all wrote orders and I look back now and know they did not read what the other one wrote. When I called one instructor in the morning, I told her that I really questioned if I would make it. I actually told her I stunk at being a nurse. She laughed so hard on the phone. I asked her what was so funny. She said don't worry, as long as you are aware of what you don't know and will seek out the answer, you will be fine. At that time, I wasn't sure what she meant, but as time went on, I questioned everyone from the housekeeper up to the supervisors. I wanted to know all the ways everyone did everything. I have beed told that I am great at what I do. Patients, families, co-workers and yes, even Doctors, compliment and praise my work.
The complexity of the illnesses these days make it harder coming out of school with just the basic knowledge. It is not easy. Too many people don't have access to health care for many reasons. They are coming into the hospital sicker than ever. Nurses have to use everything they can to do a good job. THEY DO!!!!
In my teaching days, I always advised my new Nurses to go and work on Med-surg first. Get a solid ground under your feet. Everyday of my Nursing life, which is approximately 12775 days or about 120,000 hours, I learn something every day. And if you haven't seen by now, I try to be funny and laugh with counting the days and hours. I love funny movies, comedy central to have a deep laugh from the gut. And while talking about gut, I have said over all these years listen to your guts, they will start talking to you. If a thought crosses your mind, don't ignore it. Follow it up. Sometimes it is giving you an answer to something you weren't sure of.
Go into specialty areas after you have some solid nursing skills under your belt. That includes Long Term Care. I think someone mentioned that in one of the responses. Geriatrics in Long Term Care has become very specialized as the population ages into the 90's or more and we see different conditions and diseases that are new to them.
You will have more stress if you don't have enough skills and are ill prepared to do the task at hand. Find someone who is willing to work with you and teach you. There are good and bad out there as far as sharing knowledge. The nurses who are the most confident will be the one who will be less threatened by your questions. So feel them out before you approach them with a question. I always pose it this way: I see you doing such a good job, and I don't have your knowledge yet. Would you mind showing me how you do it? I also use this when I question doctors on orders. I say, Doctor, this is something new to me, would you mind sharing the procedure or reason so I can learn for the next time. This way no one feel threatened. Then doctors might also change their mind because of what they were telling me. That was the real reason I asked them to tell me because my guts might have been saying something.
I wish you well and I hope you enjoy nursing as much as I do. Look at the positive, associate yourself around positive people and laugh.