2. I’ve worked 67 hours over the past 7 days in the emergency room. My shifts are typically 12 hours long; yesterday I was there for 14. 

    A couple of days ago a nearby hospital caught on fire and the sprinklers flooded their ER, so we’ve been getting most of the patients they would typically receive in addition to our own. This will continue for a projected 2-3 weeks. 

    The ER I work in is one of the most advanced in the region. The only kinds of patients we might actually transfer to another ER are women in labor (we have no OB department) and very severe trauma patients, since there is a specialized trauma center 6 blocks away. That being said, I’ve had patients we didn’t transfer who were in car accidents, stabbings, and blunt force trauma assaults. 

    All this to simply say that for a nurse a mere 5 months out of school, I’m really getting a trial by fire. I don’t mind, mainly because I get to sleep in tomorrow.


  3. "I wish I could bring a Xanax or a Prozac salt lick, and just let everyone everyone come up and get some beforehand."
    — My professor, talking about our upcoming NCLEX practice tests. 

  4. I’m pretty sure I’m going to be shown dramatic hospital videos on a regular basis for the rest of my nursing career. 

    (And yet I’ll ashamedly admit the corniness is still compelling.)


  5. Today I pumped my fists into a stranger’s chest in a team attempt to bring them back from the dead. It didn’t work.

    Today I felt strange feelings that have no words to name them.



  7. I just wanted to share this beautiful little moment I experienced on Facebook today. 

    Stephen Cantrell is a doctor who attends the same church as my parents. For further clarification, you need to know that he did his own independent research and cured his own cancer. He now treats others who have cancer, with great results. Insurance companies have yet to cover his method, but it is in the slow process of gaining approval. 

    I was also reminded of this post.

    (I’m not bothering to blur out any names because I don’t think any of the parties involved will mind.)


  8. Payoff

    Today in my clinical I was assigned to Trauma rooms 1 and 2, which are reserved for patients with the highest levels of acuity. I saw people arrive with anything from COPD exacerbations, to allergic reactions, to injuries from motor vehicle accidents. I participated in a “team heart”, which is the rapid-fire volley of interventions and diagnostics for any patient experiencing a heart attack.

    For the first time I truly got a taste of the environment I have made my goal for the past year. I was worried it would underwhelm, but it exceeded expectations. The ER is the first place I’ve worked so far that has felt completely unified, free of petty gossip and workplace rivalries. “We’re like the Marines down here,” one of the nurses explained, and I understood. Unlike most other clinical sites, the ER nurses never just keep to their assigned patients. They immediately sense when another nurse needs help and show up to lend a hand. The camaraderie is infectious and the staff never cease to be upbeat, full of smiles and laughter. In between saving lives, they swap toddler stories and show each other smartphone pictures of their pets. It’s a bit strange, but it’s exactly my kind of strange.

    After trudging through 12 months of endless classes and mostly menial clinical tasks, I have finally fallen in love. 


  9. Walt Whitman was a nurse.

    And that’s a fun fact for me to occasionally revisit.


  10. "Preventable disease should be looked upon as a social crime."

    Florence Nightingale, 1894

    Wash your hands and get your shots, folks. 


  11. For new nurses. 


  12. Good morning. I’m about to take my Adult Health I nursing final. 

    I’m tired.

    After today, I will have been through 12 months of a 15-month BSN-RN program. 

    The 4.0 GPA I kept for the entire duration of my English degree is long gone, but I don’t mind at all. 


  13. Trivia

    The best time to buy shoes is at night, because that is when a person’s feet are the largest. 


  14. The best way to learn about heart dysrhythmias: old school.


  15. Medical fact of the day

    10 to 15% of all pregnancies end in spontaneous abortion (miscarriage). Some women never know they were ever pregnant, because it can happen so early.