Friday, June 12, 2009

Nursing school: Week 1

I survived my first week! Let me tell you, it feels WAAAY longer than a week. It seriously feels like it's been at least two! And....only 55 weeks left.

We're going through so much, so fast. I've read sooo much already, much more than I'm accustomed to reading, especially since it's been 7 years since I went to school full time. We had to read several chapters to prepare for the first lectures. It's been nonstop since then. 

Another thing is learning all the lingo. The professors forget they're talking to (some) people with no nursing experience at all. Much like in the Army, nurses love to use acronyms. It would have been nice to get an explanation the first time a particular idea was talked about. Unfortunately, I was so overwhelmed with reading and didn't want to take too much time to look something up that I pretty much just guessed with some words. After a week though, I've learned the meaning behind NANDA (North American Nursing Diagnosis Association), NOC (Nursing Outcomes Classification), NIC (Nursing Interventions Classification), and SBAR (format followed when speaking to a physician about a situation that requires immediate action). I really had no idea there was a standard language in nursing. I am so grateful that SBAR exists, though, because I'm soooo intimidated doctors! I think I would always feel like I was bothering them since they're always go go go!

I'm also (finally) getting comfortable with the actual process of diagnosis, outcomes, and interventions. We have a health promotion contract using these skills due on the 25th and I think I'm about to get started on that. I've already "interviewed" Jon and had him fill out a wellness profile. Now that I looked over a sample, I feel that this can be accomplished easily.

As for actual skill, I've had 2 labs this week and can now take vitals (temperature, heart rate, respiration rate, and blood pressure) and perform a shift assessment. We were just introduced to the shift assessment today and will be tested over it next Friday already! Lots of practice in my future. Oh, and modesty is really not an option. After just a week of knowing each other, we had to strip down to our skivvies and get assessed by our fellow students. Unexpectedly, I had no problem with it. All for a greater cause, right? We're not here to judge!

And there's my week! Now, I need to do some reading ahead of time to avoid another meltdown (there was already one this week). Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Cole said...

Hurray! One week closer to being a nurse. :-)

jlc said...

Wow!!! it's a lot but i know you'll handle it with grace. it'll go by in a blink of an eye!!

Full of Heart said...

They made you strip down!? We always got warning and were told to wear a sports bra and little shorts. Somehow that makes you feel much more decent.
I heart SBAR. It's a relatively new concept, and just being adopted at a lot of hospitals (you have NO idea how much nurses I ended up teaching about it. EVIDENCE BASED PRACTICE people!!) but I think it's one of the greatest ones yet.
I freaked talking to doctors until I finally got this ICU Dr. to trust me in my 3rd semester, and then he even paid me a compliment and I almost fell over. I also go majorly over the fear working at a teaching hospital where you just talked to residents and not the attendings!
Sounds like they threw you right in, as it always is. Glad you're still keeping your head up and making it through!
P.S. it wasn't the start of a semester for me if I didn't have a TOTAL meltdown.

Casey (@ Ever-Changing Life) said...

Yeah for finishing week 1! Just think, you will never know less than you did this week. That's good, right?

Rebecca said...

You sure did a lot in one week! You have been one busy lady!

loquita said...

Woah, strip down?! You are a braver woman than I!

I'm glad things are going well so far, sounds like you have learned a ton and are doing great. :-D Keep us updated! :)

New Girl on Post said...

Holy crap on the stripping down! Glad you were comfortable with it though. I love hearing about nursing school though. Sounds like you are doing very well right off the bat!

Anonymous said...

Congrats on makng it through the first week. I think going through it at a really fast pace will actually help you more - it's like studying a foreign language in a foreign country. You'll be forced to pick it up faster

Rachel said...

ahhh!!! I MISS nursing school so much!!! Cherish every CRAZY moment.

My advice? listen to your teachers. Ask questions. Listen. Go with your gut. Make friends. Listen. Drink beer. the occasional cry is ok. Try not to get a bit each night. Listen. Drink beer. Listen. Catch my drift? A LOT of what was on the exam were things I heard in class. Find a group of friends and make sure you decompress with them, whether it's a lunch time burger, the weekly happy hour beer, or the study cram & jam session. You will survive. :)

lala said...

wow, that is a seriously jam-packed week you've had! sounds like you're enjoying it thought-- are you one of those weird people who enjoys working under pressure?? :]]