Tag Archives: professional

RN Orientation. Week 5:

Hot damn.

Learning how to be nurse on paper? Check. I even got a diploma for that!

Learning how to be a nurse in the clinical setting? Holy shitballs, batman. I have no idea what I’m doing!

Now, I’m probably exaggerating. Ok, I’m really exaggerating. Sorta. šŸ˜› I would consider myself relatively well prepared for new graduate nursing practice. I studied really hard in school, actively participated in nursing-related student groups, made the most of every clinical experience, completed a summer externship program, and worked as a nursing care tech. Basically, I did every single thing I could think of that would put me at the advantage in clinical practice post-graduation.

Best decisions I’ve ever made! I’m heading into week 5 of orientation this week. Most of the first weeks consisted of classroom learning and not actual floor nursing. Snooze! I’m good at learning, I’m very novice at bedside practice. I want more time at the bedside! With the start of this week, the classroom time is phasing out and my time at the bedside will be in full swing. I have 11 weeks of orientation left, so the sooner I can get into full-time bedside practice, the better. I thought I was ready, and my coworkers tell me I’m doing great, but I feel like a crazy person running around the unit when I’m working. I’m having an almost constant freakout session in my mind. Orienting to the ICU has been the most overwhelming. The majority of my experience is progressive level, so working in my progressive/acute unit hasn’t been a huge adjustment. Thank you, sweet baby Jesus. My poor nerves couldn’t take much more! The ICU is where I want and love to be, so I’m glad I’m getting to spend the time there that I am.

Everything might not seem so overwhelming…if I still wasn’t trying to digest the fact that I am a real-life RN. No one needs to double check every. single. thing. that I do. The MD can give me a verbal order and I can act accordingly. I can accept a critical value from the lab. I can perform skills and care for my patient without direct supervision. I can cosign drips, titrate drips, and waste controlled substances. I am a nurse. WHAAA?!! It’s so nice to have that independence, yet so hard to let go of that safety net. Is anyone else struggling with this?! I’m really starting to think maybe I’m just neurotic.

Me. All day. Erryday.

On top of everything else, I have online learning modules from the AACN (American Association of Critical-Care Nurses) to complete. These modules assist the new grad with orientation to concepts encountered in critical care nursing. While the idea seems grand, and in an ideal world they would be grand, they are KILLING me. They take hours and hours and hours to complete (Type A perfectionist…must. make. A. on. exam.) and take up almost every single moment of free time I have right now. Not only that, if I don’t complete them, or can’t pass the module, I can lose my job. Awesome. *thumbs up* I thought I was finished with school. Wrong! Sorry, hubs. (Who, by the way, is heartbroken that I have to spend so much time “working”.)

In other news…my next post (hopefully going up very soon!) will be a slight variation from my usual posts. So stay tuned, I think you guys will really like it! I’m always searching for new topics to blog about, so contact me with what you’ve got! My rambling really can’t be that interesting. I think IĀ have turned into a crazy person!


Join the conversation by posting a comment. If you like this post, or any of my other posts, feel free to pass it along. Choose your preferred platform by clicking on the title of the post, then clicking one of those fancy buttons at the bottom of the post!Ā :)



March 17, 2014 · 7:16 pm

RN Orientation. Week 1:

Yeahhh, son!

I finally accepted a RN position.

Is it what I wanted?


You can’t win them all.

After getting over the disappointment of not landing my dream job and being forced into a position I didn’t even apply for, I have made up my mind to beĀ happy.Ā Why? Because I have to live with me. Being a new nurse is terrifying. I don’t want to beĀ miserableĀ and terrified. In the position that I accepted, I will have the opportunity to care for ICU, progressive, and acute care patients from all different service lines and specialties throughout the teaching hospital. The unit also cares for floor declines/crashes, ED (admitted) overflow, direct admits, etc.

If you recall, I have worked in this particular hospital for the last 2 years as a pool nursing care tech. Being in the pool allowed me to work in every single unit throughout the entire hospital. Which means, I’ve teched many times in the unit I will be working in as a RN. It also means that I am well aware of the reputation and atmosphere of every unit in the joint. The unit I was forced into has one of the worst reputations in the place. I’ve seen both sides of the coin, and I do believe (in some instances) that this reputation is unfair. The set up of this unit is a hard concept to understand, unless you’ve experienced it. The goal for an acute/progressive pt stay is <30 hrs. For an ICU pt it’s <60. That means on most days, the unit turns over at least half, if not more, of their occupied beds. This creates a hectic environment and the units receiving our patients are never happy. Labs weren’t drawn, orders left uncompleted, no/bad IVs, poor communication, the complaints go on and on. However, I have witnessed the instances where this reputation is fair. I have seen lazy nurses choose to send their patients out like a hot mess with uncompleted orders, dirty briefs/beds, and bad/no IVs. Butā€¦there are lazy nurses everywhere. And IĀ refuse to be one of them. Therefore, I have made up my mind to be happy. Maybe I’m the change they need? Or maybe, I’ll just do my 6 months and transfer. Who knows?! Either way, I’m happy.

Orientation started yesterday. I have already been through this junk once, but they are paying me 2x as much this go around. I did get out of a second hospital orientation, which is why you’re getting this blog post. *thumbs up* I am so anxious to get to the floor and start working. It feels like it has been too long. My nursing skills are going to be rusty!

Anyone else starting a new job? Even betterā€¦ Is anyone starting a job they didn’t exactly want? Or have experiences to share from a nursing job they didn’t really want? I want to hear from you!

Join the conversation by posting a comment. If you like this post, or any of my other posts, feel free to pass it along. Choose your preferred platform by clicking on the title of the post, then clicking one of those fancy buttons at the bottom of the post!Ā :)


Filed under Life after Nursing School.