can someone please tell me what to do with my life??

Friday, September 12, 2008
Okay, not really...I mean, I LOVE being a nurse. It's the greatest thing I can imagine doing right now. But honestly I am ridiculously indecisive in this area of my life and have NO IDEA what department I am supposed to work in. I wish someone would just tell me.

I know that I want to do critical care, I am too young and get bored too easily to be on a general Medical Surgical floor and I don't do kids or really, kids are cool but holding them down while sticking them with needless and telling them "this won't hurt" when you know you're lying through your teeth is no fun. I'm also not very sympathetic towards whinners....yeah, not sure where I got Oh, and yeah. I don't do pregnant women either. Nope. Not gonna happen.

Anyway, I know that I want to work in the Intensive Care Unit or the Emergency Room. I've worked in the ER for over a year as a student nurse and I LOVED it. I did my practicum in the Surgical Trauma ICU and loved that too. And for all of those that don't know...I am currently in a program where they rotate you through our four ICU's (Surgical Trauma, Medical Surgical, Neurological, and Cardiovascular) as well as the ER and then you get to choose who you are gonna sign a contract with.

Besides completely wigging out about the contract anyway, I cannot decide where I fit in this hospital! I think the best and worst part is that I've enjoyed everywhere I've been! I haven't hated anything, by any means...I guess that's just confirmation that I'm in the right profession.

But I feel like I should have some direction after being in this program for two months. And I don't.
"They" say that ER nursing is have to know a LITTLE bit about LOTS of things, everything in fact. While ICU nursing is much deeper. You know ALOT about a FEW things. I'm just not sure where I fit. The ICU is also very structured. You operate within a somewhat restricting time table of when drugs are to be given, when labs must be drawn, how often you turn your patient and at what times you feed, bath, talk to family, and meet with doctors.

There is much more freedom in the ER. Although lately mine has been fighting to try to structure a bunch of creative personality types...and failing miserably. In the ER you never know what is going to walk through the door. You might be treating a migraine, a nursing home patient with a broken hip, a spider bite, a schizophrenic with suicidal ideations, a pregnant lady who is scared out of her mind, a kid who broke her arm when she wrecked her golf cart, or a man who got T-boned...I saw all of those last week. You never know.

And there is something about that that makes you look forward to going to work everyday. But at the same time, most days I leave wondering if I made a difference at all.

I was talking with one of the Surgery Residents yesterday and he told me that a guy I took care of for four weeks in the STICU was about to be discharged home. Now that's exciting. This guy was in a motorcycle wreck and over a period of three weeks I saw him go from respiratory failure to talking and even walking. Through those weeks he threw up on me and I had to clean him up numerous times, his wife called me about three times a day to see how he was doing, and his 4 and 7 year old girls stared at me while I gave him his medicine. He had to be restrained because he kept trying to get out of bed, he was given a trach and had a feeding tube, he even coded and was resuscitated. This dude had been through hell and back and he's gonna be discharged next week! The ICU is slowly, but steadily rewarding.

Usually. I also had to assist in taking six patient off of life support in four weeks. Three of whom I had gotten to know their families pretty well. It's never easy...

And so the indecision continues. I welcome any advice.


Justin said...

I think you should do the one where they're all like in the operating room, and then the little machine starts beeping really loud, and somebody yells "I need a thingamabob, STAT!" and this other surgeon guy is like "No, I said 50 CC's of blah-blah-mino-fin!" and then the big, mean, head doctor dude is like "we're losing her!" and then somebody like puts a rubber-band around something and the patient like, wakes up, and the machine stops beeping, and everybody's like "thank God!" except the head doctor, who's like seen this kindof thing a million times and he just walks out all non-nonchalant after glaring at the girl who gave the patient the wrong amount of CC's or whatever. And then a nurse and a surgeon make out in the pipette closet or something.

Which one is that?

Anonymous said...

I agree with Justin.

drew said...

Ah, the pipette closet...

I was an ICU survivor. Allow me to near-randomly cast my vote in that direction.

Lindsay Christerson said...

i think you would be way ahead of the game if you knew what you wanted to do... I dont really... my mom still says when i grow up i want to be... i know i am behind here, but dont let a contract for a few years be really scary, who knows who you will be in a few years.. love ya!