The newbie chronicles

Yes, I’m still here… I know it’s been a long time since I posted. I’ve thought about it a lot, but haven’t quite known what to say. I’m still processing the new job, I guess.

All in all, it’s going well. I’ve been in the regular newborn nursery since I started and I’m beginning to feel like I can walk in and have some idea of what to do with myself rather than sit there like a bump on a log until someone tells me to do something. So that’s progress. Still lots to learn, but I’ve got the basics down and my manager sounds like she’s ready to test me out of the nursery so I can move on to the floor. Surprisingly, I feel ready, too. So that’s good. One more week of nursery and then I’m moving on to postpartum. Postpartum never really appealed to me during my maternity rotation in school, but my primary preceptor seems like an excellent postpartum nurse, so I’m hoping I might learn to like it.

I feel like I’m in a funk about the whole thing, though. Some of it’s just newbie stress, I’m sure: trying to make a good impression, learning all this new stuff, etc. But I think more of it is that I know that I want something beyond this. There are a lot of nurses who have been on staff in this unit (and the hospital in general, actually) for eons. On the one hand that might say a lot of good things about the place, and I think it does. But when I think about spending the next 40 years of my life in the same place, ugh… it feels like torture. Maybe that’s just a generational difference. Forty years ago people looked for stability. My generation is happy to job hop if it means something bigger and better. I am afraid I may disappoint my manager in a year or two here. I know it’s expensive to orient new nurses and I don’t want to jump ship right after and leave them high and dry. But on the other hand, I’m 6 credits away from my master’s degree. I want to use the degree at some point here, not just do staff nursing until my joints give out. I get that I need to “pay my dues” and get some real nursing experience… but I’m thinking ahead and excited about what the future holds and eager to get going. I guess that’s a good thing?

Still putting in some hours in quality doing chart review and enjoying that. It’s rejuvenating to spend some time at “home” and it doesn’t hurt that my coworkers there always make me feel like my work makes a difference!

Summer class ended last week. It went well and I feel like I got a lot out of the readings (it was a class on quality management, perhaps that had something to do with it!). So officially I’m on break until September. Unfortunately it’s not a real break because I need to start doing work on my capstone project. Blech. I tried to start searching the databases for articles and came up with nothing. Ugh… here I thought I’d find a plethora of research out there. Not a good start. But it will get done… come hell or high water I will be graduating in December!

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