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peacelover's Latest Activity

  1. peacelover

    Failed my 1st Fundamentals Exam

    Sent you a PM with a helpful site...dont give up!
  2. peacelover

    Favorite books to help you understand material?

    Hey! All books will put the same content in front of you. It depends on how you learn. Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic? Only you have that answer and I imagine you have a good feel for it by this point. I was not a huge fan of my OB/GYN rotation. I got through it by immersing myself in the material as I did the other theory topics and using the ADPIE process to study every disease state. There are some things you just have to memorize however; the more you tie disease process to assessment data, your nursing dx and most importantly your interventions the more deeply you will retain what you read; regardless of what book you get it from. Best of luch to you-I am sure you will be awesome!
  3. peacelover

    Expectations vs Reality

    I am glad you see that you are being a bit hard on yourself. I will say though, thank you for actually caring that you do a great job and take give great care, lots of new nurses do not really even know that they do not know something. Which is an even worse spot to be in-so you are doing something right! :) Maybe it is the hit-or-miss nature of patient assignments is adding to your frustration. It is hard on a med-surg floor because you may get a hip tonight and a CHF tomorrow followed by an ETOH withdrawal mixed with a demented patient. All those difference can overload your brain when it is trying to learn. I am not sure what kind of floor you work on however; maybe it would be possible to chat with the charge nurse and tell them-'Hey, I need to get really good at CHF with complications or I really need to learn more about insulins and timings(or whatever you feel)-can you throw these all of these types of patients my way for a while so I can gain proficiency with their care please?' So your brain can focus... Maybe that gives you a chance to 'live' in the world of CHF for a few weeks straight so you can fully immerse yourself in the meds/labs/interventions/complications. If that is not possible maybe pick a particular lab value to focus on for the month. BUN/Creatinine and the ratio, when it means AKF or CKF or when it is just dehydration. What would you expect the doc to do with each, to prove each. Look at the meds that would change the ratios, that may harm the kidneys. Sometimes coming at it from the back side-lab or med first could be a better way to cover all your patients. You know, compare the same lab across your patients. Why does one have a high BUN and the other no? Just some suggestions. I think you will find that if you come at things from a slightly different angle it will get easier, faster. Focus on one thing and get good at it, instead of trying to be good at everything right now. I am sending great thoughts your way-I know you will be awesome once you get through this first few months!
  4. peacelover

    Expectations vs Reality

    It is hard when expectation does not match up with reality. I have never been scared, I think that my pre-nursing life experience helped me with confidence. I was shocked at the gaps though..you know there was just so much that school cannot possibly prepare you to face. I felt like I had slept through a lot of theory class on some days.I waited 20 years to get to be a nurse too, so I get that part. I think it is good that you have identified what is going on for you instead of just having a general yucky feeling about your job. Now that you know what is going on I think you can create a plan for it, don't you? Where do you feel the biggest fear? Patients crashing? Medications? Lab work? Missing something critical that harms your patient? Time Mgmt? Not understanding the disease processes that are showing up on your floor? You can name it, you can fix it. You got this one lock!
  5. peacelover

    Frustrated student

    I am sorry you are going through all this, how tough to be so disappointed in something you worked so hard to get into in the first place. I am wondering, have you spoken to any of the faculty about your concerns? What have they said about how your perception of the test questions? I think all nursing schools are tough AND I think most of us, at some point, found ourselves thinking; 'where the heck did that question come from-I never saw that material in the textbook.' Sad, but true. I hope you can find a way to pull yourself out of the negative collective that sortof feeds off each other. There is no room for 'poor me' ot an 'us against them vibe' in nursing school. It just sucks vital energy away from you and makes you feel defeated before you even start-no good. Fact is, the school is doing something right or they would not be have a nursing program. I will say that while it might not 'look' like it you probably have gone through the concepts needed to answer these questions correctly. At least the majority of the time. For example, you probably studied about hydration and electrolytes replacement and how to best help an athlete but now they want you to take the raw data you learned and apply it to other things. That is maybe where the disconnect is at for you. In the application of one topic you did learn verbatim to another topic you did not learn verbatim. It might work for you when you are studying to really focus on the rationales or the why behind what you are doing and what you are seeing in the patient. For example, why is a correct K+ value important? Why are K+ and Na+ lost in exercise? What happens if they are lost, how does the body tell you it needs more of them? What conditions other than sweating a lot would you think might need to have these elytes replaced in? Why is it important to look at them at all? What are the norm values? What if the body has too much of them instead of not enough? In this way, looking at it from all side, asking yourself why questions you can sort of back your way into the answers on the test. The other thing I think would be good is to really take your time and look at what the question is asking you. Are you missing a piece of the puzzle in the question so that you are not looking for the right answer in the first place? Saunders does a good job in explaining how to find the critical pieces in the questions in the NCLEX RN book. If you get in the habit of working some NCLEX questions every day and reading the rationales, even if you get the question correct, you will improve your test scores. Last, do you have a mentor program at your school where you could be tutored by other students that are having more success? Maybe you could approach an upper classman and ask for guidance in a positive way? Probably way more than you wanted here, I just want you to know you dont have to give up... Peace-
  6. peacelover

    How do I change my outlook?

    Ultimately, you are studying to learn how to keep patients safe and alive. So, study with this in the forefront of your mind. To heck with the focus on grades one way or the other. Don't let that keep you from being motivated to do a great job.
  7. peacelover

    study Aids

    First semester is a bit overwhelming at times. Have you been able to determine how you learn best yet? If you are a visual learner then maybe you need to draw out the concepts and connect the dots between them to retain the knowledge. There is a series that puts the basic concepts into pictures that is helpful to some folks. Not sure the exact title but if you search 'memory notebook nursing' you will find it. Are you spending enough time studying? I found that I had plenty of material to study and no matter what I looked at it was basically the same info just presented a bit different. It was really the way I was studying that I had to change rather than going to get different material to study. That gets expensive, quick! Have you ever used to nursing process to study? For example, if you are studying CHF..pull out of your text what things you would look for in your Assessment of that patient, include all bits of data, s/s, lab values, subjective things, patient presentation/lifestyle/comorbities and then come up with nursing diagnosis that go with what you assessed, then plan your care, intervene and evaluate what you did based on whether or not the problem was resolved. Link in your brain when you would know things improved or conditions associated with CHF would be changed by your interventions..what would you actually see in your patient as a result of your actions? What other conditions would that touch? Draw some tables that compare like diseases so you can see how hypoxia could be an issue in many disease states, what you could do that would work in all cases and what is specific to each disease. Focus your time on connecting as many forward and backward dots as possible between s/s, interventions, etc.. Ah, that was probably way more than you wanted to know. Best of Luck to you! Don't give up!
  8. First off, Congratulations on getting into a program! You will LOVE this world. I totally dig that you are reaching out here to find others to share your journey with; this can help a lot! A few things that might be helpful. As you enter 1st semester try not to stress out too much about things. There will be a jillion things going on and so this is a challenge to 'stay calm'. To help feel in control get a calendar and fill it out(in pencil)the first day you get your info-put everything on it and then follow it. Schedule time with your family and let them know up front. I told mine that I really appreciated their help and support while I was working on my dream job. I made sure their needs were met BUT I put nursing first for 2 years. They understood and amazingly none of them died while I was focusing on study. Hey, dont forget...Schedule time to take care of yourself too, schedule time for good food and exercise. Do not sit and snack while you study. You need good brain fuel to get good results . . Accept this up-front: You probably will do cruddy on at least one test. That is okay; you do not have to have a 4.0 to be a great nurse. Once 1st semester if done try to get a job as a tech somewhere. This experience will be invaluable to you. If you already work in the healthcare setting then stay there Make sure that you create some 'sacred space' to study in..seriously. This is the place where no one comes in but you while you are in there. Set that expectation up front with your fam and you will both be happy later. Nothing like being in the middle of a hard concept and having a needy kiddo come in and break your train of thought. You are going to spend a lot of time with this material and these people. Make friends with them by being nice and helpful however; do what you need for you first. Lots of us tend to be super-helpful to others at the expense of ourselves. Stay away from cliques and gossip-these will just drain your precious time and energy. Unless you are memorizing lab values or drug facts please get rid of the flash cards. Rote memorization is NOT the way to learn nursing. Figure out how you learn best then stick to it. Do not feel like you must be a part of a study group if you learn better alone. You will not fail without a group effort. If you have a group someone needs to be in charge of making sure that you stay focused and do not veer off into chitchat while you are supposed to be studying. I know that sounds harsh but I swear, sometimes you can get off on a tangent when you are venting and an hour is past before you know it! Maybe even plan some 'vent' sessions. You have to do things that root concepts in your head by making as many links to them as you can while you are studying. Think about the why of things, what the doc will do to help it and what you will do to support the doc/patient while they work on the recovery. Start early and learn how to tie everything you study back to those nursing interventions/meds/labvalues. This is the way to KNOW the info and RECALL the info when it counts. Y'all are all going to be awesome nursing students and nurses! Welcome to Nursing!
  9. peacelover

    Collin County Community College

    I am in the Collin ADN program now if anyone has any specific questions you can send me a message. Unless you work for a hospital and can take advantage of one of their nursing training routes all the programs in DFW are hard to get into- Peace-
  10. peacelover

    It's really happening!

    WOOHOO-This is awesome! I start nursing school in 46 days after 19 years of waiting and am so incredibly excited about it; so 2 years from now I will make the same post! Congrats on having the courage to take the leap of faith and putting in the hard work needed to get to the end of the dream..let the new chapter begin! Blessings to you as you shine that light!
  11. I can really agree about looking at the websites. The pre-reqs do change and if you do not keep up with that then you could do great and still end up waiting over some silly thing like an immunization or test. Sometimes the admission test are booked months and semesters in advance. It would be awful to make all A's and have to wait because of some small thing. The only other advice I would give is this: look at every class like there is no other option than for you get an A, then-work as hard as it takes to get an A in that class. The only way to assure you get in a program is to have as many points or as high a GPA as you can. Do not let yourself make any excuses as to why you cannot study or why you cannot make that A...kids, work, crazy teachers whatever-you will make a A..period Think Positive and look at the intense work to get that A as a gift, a blessing rather than a burden-do not allow yourself the luxury of a negative thought! It is all about your attitude~ Good Luck!
  12. peacelover

    Has anyone used an e-book instead of a textbook?

    I think it really depends on what your prefer/how you learn. I did the e-book for stats and there were some interactive exercises that really helped me learn. For A&P/Micro/Chem I carried my book everywhere to 'study' so I really wanted those instead of the e-book. Make your choice on how you learn and what feels comfy to you. Either way will work!
  13. Academic Aptitude is a lump of the other 3 so you get 1 point for that if the cumulative total is over 70 percent-then add 1 point for each of the spikes you see on the test report. If you have 5 and all your scores are over 70(seems like the math was not)then you get that extra 1 point to make 6. Collin counselor recently told me that 'everyone' with 15 or more gets in..don't hold much to that though-I guess it really just depends on how many people apply that have 16 points :) Counselors at the college will interpret for you if you want to be sure. Good Luck! Hope that helps some-
  14. Texas Health Resources has an awesome volunteer program. I work in ED and actually take vitals, walk patients to rooms, clean rooms, send labs, stock things..all kinds of things. Most of my time is spent in triage taking vitals though. I have learned so much! They require 4 hour per week in one shift. Go to their website and search under volunteer. You will have a blast