Week from h-e-double-you-know-whats

Ugh. Blah. Yuck. Ew.

That’s my take on this week. When it rains it pours, and all that. It’s 7:45 in the evening and I’m in the library at school typing the second paper due for my policy class in two days. Never knew that malpractice could be boiled down into 6-10 pages. Nor patient safety. Heck, it took the Institute of Medicine nearly 300 pages to do it. Guess they shoulda hired me. Heh. Oh well, I’m going to head home in a few minutes, double check my last paper and send it in. Don’t know what sorta grade I can expect on it, but it will be done. I’m really rather disappointed that they decided to offer this class in a condensed 6-week format online. I actually find the information pretty interesting and important, but we only have time to give it a passing glance as we go whizzing by at 100 miles per hour. I don’t think I’m learning nearly as much as I could. But on the flip side, in about two more weeks it will be over and I can just concentrate on the other two classes which are more than enough.

Mental health is going okay. Talked to my first patient last week. Not sure how therapeutic my communication skills were, especially seeing as I couldn’t hear most of what she was saying… a combination of me being deaf and/or easily distracted when there are other conversations going on around me and the fact that she kept looking like she was dozing off mid-sentence. I’m not sure how therapeutic the entire environment there is, actually. Wouldn’t be my first place to stop if I had a serious mental illness. I’m jealous of my classmates who are at the state mental hospital since it sounds like they’ve got a really supportive environment and they actually get to follow a patient over a few weeks… the patients at my clinical site are really only there for 3-5 days, anything more serious and they’d likely be sent to the state hospital.

Adult health has been interesting. After the mass failure on the first quiz the second one went slightly better… I actually didn’t think it was that bad. I didn’t perform spectacularly, in large part because of the two papers mentioned above which have been weighing pretty heavily on my mind over the weekend, but I could have if I’d been able to put in some more study time. My classmates are all in a tizzy, though, whining about how it’s not fair, they don’t know what to study, etc., etc. I like to join in on the vent fest, but there comes a point when I feel like saying, “Shut up, move on.” Yeah, and I want to be a nurse with that generous attitude, I know. I’m enjoying learning the material, though, and feeling like I can understand more about what’s going on with my patients. We started our clinicals last week. I’m at another hospital in the same city as last semester and they’re known for their cardiac care. Coincidentally we’re spending the first half of the semester on a cardiac floor. So far I’m kinda bored and itching to get more patients and do more, but at least we’re getting settled in and getting used to a new system. My patients so far have been lovely. Last week my patient’s podiatrist was scheduled to come in and change the dressing on her foot, but I guess he got tied up so I ended up doing it! Funny how you don’t think of the grossness when you’re up close and personal with it. I felt bad because I made her wince, although she was diabetic and hadn’t been able to feel a thing before, so it was actually a good sign that she could feel pain. Didn’t make me feel any better about inflicting it on her, though! Then today I had an outpatient who was in for cardioversion. I was supposed to go in with him to observe, but we were only there until 11am and he hadn’t gone in at that point, so I wandered around the floor in bright green student scrubs for naught. Disappointing… the nurse said the physician would have probably let me push the button, too… sounds like a lot of responsibility, but apparently the equipment is rather idiot-proof, kind of like the Automated External Defibrillators out there… you can push the button ’til kingdom come if you want to, but it won’t do a darned thing unless the machine tells you to. Oh well. The nurse was really funny, though… when she saw that we were leaving for the day she was so disappointed that I didn’t get to see the cardioversion and was asking our instructor, “Can’t she stay, it would be so much fun!” Maybe next time. The staff on the floor is awesome… apparently they get a lot of students and really like having them. Our clinical instructor is great, too. It’s kind of funny, she was a nurse on the floor that I did my clinical at last semester… but I don’t think we ever would have run into her since she only worked per diem and on nights. It’s also funny because our clinical instructor last semester (on a med-surg/oncology floor) was a cardiac nurse and now we’re on a cardiac floor with an oncology nurse. I’m definitely enjoying that part of this semester. I feel bad for one of our other clinical groups who apparently has an instructor who doesn’t agree with our program… um, if you don’t agree with it, don’t teach it. Guess she darned near made at least one person cry last week. Thanking my lucky stars that I don’t have to deal with that!

Okay, it’s past 8 now and getting dark, so I’m going to head home… submit this blasted paper, then off to bed so I can get up early in the morning and take the car in for the funky noise it’s decided to start up with (because it knows I have no money) and spend the morning while it’s being fixed doing work for my mental health class. Oh, the fun, it never ends.


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