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Sep
22

First Impressions

Forgive me for the delayed update…I’ve been sleeping for two days. 😛

My first night shift on the new unit could not have gone better. My preceptor is A-MAZ-ING – she’s been doing this forever, she is gentle and kind and is clearly a resource for everyone. I can’t tell you how many times others asked her questions or sought clinical advice, and she always patiently offered her expertise. The other nurses are so ridiculously helpful – it’s a culture of camaraderie and mutual respect. And this includes the CNAs, who are proactive and involved and work their asses off.

When I arrived, the assistant manager was there to greet me with a big hug. If that doesn’t say it all right there… When she introduced me to the day shift crew, they literally cheered. Night shift was equally thrilled, because it means we are close to being fully staffed.

What a difference a hospital makes, eh?

Workwise, it was a relatively low key night. They started me with just two patients (usual patient load is 4-6), who were pretty hands off. Both of them slept for most of the night, no IV meds, no intense personalities, etc. It was actually a pretty quiet night for the whole floor, but I was repeatedly reminded by everyone not to get too comfortable. It is clear that this is a busy unit and that the patients are sick. Really sick. So I’m not holding onto any hope that it will continue to be a cake walk (not that I wanted it to be … I’m here to learn after all).

We made use of the time by learning more about the computer charting system and staffing policies, and reviewing my orientation packet. I also had a chance to get acquainted with some of my new co-workers, which was really nice. Everyone is so damn friendly.

So, survey says, I feel great about this! I’m nervous about the chaos that will eventually ensue when I’m on my own, and I’m fully aware that my easy first night was an exception to the rule. But it seems like we have a good team. A really good team. And I plan to be a part of it!

Back tonight and tomorrow night for more. Let’s hope the honeymoon continues… 😉

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