Not only for myself, but for nursing students all over the area. Which means… students on the floor! Last week was orientation week for the schools that use our facility, but this week they’re taking patients. I realized that fact this morning with a sudden fear. Yikes, these students will be coming to ME asking for report, assistance, guidance… Luckily today I actually had a preceptor assigned to me, so I didn’t feel quite so vulnerable.
I found myself spending most of my day with one patient and the student assigned to her. It was nice to have an eager and willing pair of hands to help me, I will admit. I sat down with the student to go over the paperwork in the patient’s chart. Not very exciting, but I wasn’t sure how much they knew about the chart, so wanted to make sure she felt comfortable with it. She turned to me at one point and asked, “Do you like to teach?” The question caught me by surprise. Teach? Teach what? “Because you’re very good at it,” she went on. I thanked her, hoping I wasn’t blushing too furiously.
In retrospect I think part of me felt embarassed at myself. Who did I think I was trying to act the “expert” to a nurse who in truth had miles of nursing experience on me (she is an LPN going back to school for her RN)? What did my coworkers think of me sitting there acting like a Miss-Know-it-All to students when I’m as green as Kermit? In the midst of my self-flagellation I had a revelation, though. I do know stuff. I’m still the novice nurse, sure, but I can admit to myself that I’ve come a long way in the past couple months. It gives me hope that there will be an end to my newbie apathy, apprehension, and angst and one of these days I won’t feel like I’m pretending anymore.