Even though I am only a CNA right now, I can tell you are a good nurse, as I watch mine daily to figure out what I want to be like and what I never want to be like. The best nurses are present and accountable, but not totally self-sacrificing. Yes, many skip breaks and meals, but eat while charting. I had one tell me to hydrate because she'd seen that I had worked the better part of a double (16 hours) with no break or lunch. Hydrating helps your muscles not be sore the next day. On the way to work, I get a large sweet tea from McDee's for the caffeine and sugar rush and then refill with ice and water several times throughout the day. On a routine pee break, I grab a few bites of a sandwich or suck down a yogurt and I'm good to go. I don't even sit.
Also, delegating more is a great piece of advice--CNAs or PCTs are there to answer lights. That's my job! If I answer a light and the resident needs something out of my scope that only a nurse can do, I relay that message. We joke that our rehab unit is the Ritz Carlton because it looks like Christmas with all the lights and they are extra needy, for the most inane things at times. The Alzheimer's unit and regular LTC unit are a lot more chill most days. Full moons don't count.
Yes, you should speak to that person who yelled down the hall at you. Not acceptable at all, unless there's a fall, fight, or code. They could frighten or wake a sleeping patient within earshot. I do one of 2 things to get my nurse's attention if on the phone/otherwise busy--write what the resident needs on an index card along with their name and room # and place in front of them, or stand close looming in a sort of pee-pee dance urgency. I'm not easily missed because I'm pretty tall. They get to me when they are at a good stopping point. People in administrative duties are so often clueless about how we have things prioritized, as I have been told that a resident needs to be toileted or changed, etc., by one passing through...even though they might have been next on my round. Don't take it personally. One of the best things someone ever told me was attributed to Hillary Clinton during her Lewinsky woes--she said she learned to "take things seriously but not personally". As in, I acknowlege what you are saying and may address it, but it's not a judgement or poor reflection on anything I've done/am doing. The second came recently, when we were short-staffed, the AC wasn't working properly on much of the unit (80+degrees!), and a new nurse snapped at me that I needed to "prioritize" this one light because it had been on for "a hot minute". I told her I had to lay my people down from dinner first and then would then get the light of the person (whom I had recently changed). But I was enraged, mostly from the assumption I was ignoring the light. So I went to the nurse supervisor and spilled it all, told her I wanted to tender my resignation, etc. She said something about not reacting emotionally (in the kindest way), and offered me a gatorade LOL. This nurse was onto something, as she saw I was hot, hadn't had a break, and was emotionally overwrought. She knew that while emotion is part of what makes you a good aide (or nurse!), you gotta keep it in check by keeping your physical and mental states well at all times. Later on that night, I had to help that nurse who yelled at me put a resident on a bed pan. She'd literally never done it (and had it positioned upside down), so I guessed she'd never been an aide and that this was her first nursing job. From that point on, we were cool, and have been on every shift we work together.
I really hope you stay in nursing and on the boards because I'm sure you will have sage advice one day when I'm on the floor, and ready to give up!