Post-grad Crisis

Four years ago, they said it’s pretty much guaranteed that you’ll find a job when you graduate from nursing school. That no longer holds true with today’s job market.

This helpless, vulnerable, insecure feeling I get is overwhelming sometimes. “What’s wrong with me?” Maybe the school, GPA, and volunteer experiences all don’t matter in the real world.

To be continued…

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Just another struggle

Just one more class to fulfill my minor.

Just 1 more point to get a higher letter grade.

Just a tenth of a point to get Magna.

Just a little bit more of this, then I can get That. I’m sick and tired of always missing it just by a little, and I hate the fact that I go after things that are somewhat insignificant compared to the larger things in life. But if God is trying to send me a message, sorry, I’m way too preoccupied to take anything in right now, because there’s something about not being able to obtain something that makes you want to have it even more. And usually the way it works is that the more desperate I am, the more “No’s” I get. The more I fight, the more is taken away.

So, then when is it right to fight and when is it right to surrender?

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Finale

The workload was a bit overwhelming in the last couple of weeks: capstone project implementation combined with clinicals. But the worst is over. 🙂

Last week was a very discouraging week. I felt very incompetent because my patients questioned everything I did, one went as far as quizzing me, some straight out rejected students in their care, and one treated me as a janitor even after telling her I’m a nursing student. I guess it was a reality check for me that I still have a lot of work to do and a lot more to learn. I know I will continue to encounter these situations even as a new nurse, so I also need to know how to respond in a positive and professional manner.

On a positive note, one of my ex-patients was able to get her liver transplant. Seeing the joy in her face and being able to share that with her and her family was by far one of the most satisfying moments that week.

This week was my last week, and it’s been the longest week EVER. I worked 4 days straight, holding on to a few hours of sleep to get through each day. I don’t know how nurses do 15 days straight! One day, I had 4 discharges and 4 admissions simultaneously, which translates to insanity, and it doesn’t help to have a VIP pt. who gets all the special attention. But thank God all of them were very pleasant patients. An 82 y.o. female pt asked if my nurse knew any hot doctors, “senior selection” of course. smh…and my nurse went along with it! pulling out pictures to show the pt. -_- in the end, we were transporting the patient for a procedure and she told us her goal was to be engaged by the time she comes back from the procedure!

Saying bye to my preceptor was really difficult. She made all the difference in my learning experience. With her, I’ve gained confidence in situations I never thought I’d have any confidence, and she was always concerned about my learning. I’m probably one of the luckiest nursing students in my class!

This journey had its ups and downs just like any other journeys in life. The ups being my preceptor, the experience I got, and an understanding of my weaknesses; down being the whole reality check, knowing and accepting that I don’t have it all together, that I’m behind in various aspects of my learning, witnessing society’s image of nursing, and doubting whether nursing is right for me or not. At this point, I don’t have all the answers together, and I didn’t expect this clinical experience to give me answers. I’m just happy that I’m one step closer to finding what I want, and with that, it’s given me a direction.

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Crunch time

aaah! Going on our 8th week. It’s definitely crunch time, still needa squeeze in the last 84 clinical hours and finish my project.

Doing 3 shifts in a row was so draining. ugh… But I did get to take care of the same patients all 3 days. I really got to know what they need and was able to monitor any deviations. Something new I did this week: transfused FFP, assisted in paracentesis, and withdrew blood from a PICC.

I’ve been in-servicing everyone on the floor and it’s such a looong project. I wish it was over already. I feel really inadequate educating nurses on how to communicate with patients since I’m still a student. Effective or not, there’s no time to do another project. Just gotta go along with it. =/

Due to my zombie mode, I will end here. ‘Til next time.

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Valentine’s Day

It’s been awhile since I last updated cuz things got pretty crazy with clinicals and my capstone project. Since I have clinicals tomorrow, I’ll make this short: made 2 attempts at starting an IV, but failed, placed a foley in an elderly female successfully (yay!), gave a good report for the first time, took on 3 patients, convinced a patient to use her BIPAP after an hour of persuasion.

Today, my patient gave me a rose for Valentine’s day. 🙂 My nurse bought me chocolate cake. 🙂 And a patient said meeting me was the best thing that ever happened to her since she got admitted. 🙂 What better place than the hospital to celebrate Valentine’s Day! 🙂

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MD?

Yesterday in clinical, I had a very persuasive patient who insisted that I become a doctor. At first, I thought he was just being nice and motivating, but later on in the day, he started seriously pushing me to think about med school. He said I was very young and I have a lot of time to reach for something “higher.” He also insisted that I don’t get married anytime soon. 0_O Although this patient may be a bit close-minded and traditional, the things he said did strike a chord with me, because I was once premed. I think my major drawbacks are the fact that I’ve always lacked confidence in myself, and the direction of my life has always been guided by fear. So shortly after about a year of being premed, I didn’t think I could handle the courses and I was just thoroughly intimidated by all the competitive premeds, thus ended my goal/desire to be a doctor. But what complicates this matter, is that in the midst of this, I fell into nursing, and I came to understand so much about it that I can’t deny the fact that I do like nursing. Now, I’m just torn…where the heck is my passion?                   Thank God my preceptor was able to relate to me because she’s also debating whether to take the MCATs or go for her Master’s.

Not knowing what you want in life is really frustrating. Sometimes, I just want to disappear for a while so I can take a break from thinking, so that I won’t make any more bad decisions or mistakes, but as more time goes by, the more is expected of me,  the more maturity I need to bring to the table, and the more pressure to make a decision.

God, please help me figure out myself…. like SOON!

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Love Advice

Things seem to be a bit mellow at clinicals now. Not too many interesting procedures, but I do feel like I’m taking on more. I feel like a real nurse; this feels like my real job. Skills that I thought I would never get good at, I can now juggle while talking to my patients. Patients are starting to trust me more and that’s a really amazing feeling. My preceptor and I actually had a lot of down time so we decided to talk to our patients. One of my patient turned out to be a very renowned artist! After reading his biography, I was still somewhat skeptical. Due to HIPAA violation, I won’t mention his name, but very briefly, he’s a Holocaust survivor and that was enough for me to skip a heartbeat. I don’t know about you, but I only know of Holocaust survivors through books. At some point in our conversation, I just felt so inadequate talking to someone who’s been through so so much, who’s been to EVERY corner of the world, and has done almost every possible thing. We went from talking about places to travel, to FOOD, to family, to art, and then finally… to the topic of love and relationships. Seeing how he talks about his wife is the sweetest thing, this is a lucky man who found the love of his life. The way his eyes open with excitement when his wife calls makes me so envious. He then proceeded to giving me advice: say “No” if it ain’t right and don’t linger; don’t be with someone because you don’t want to be lonely, are among the many advice. Man, I love this guy! I love the fact that he lived his life really to the fullest and with passion despite challenging times.

Can’t wait to get a copy of his biography!

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