Friday, February 19, 2010

Role change

The other day started off as any other day, I woke up early, got ready and went to clinical. Since I was observing in a new environment I was nervous about what journey I was about to embark on. I had read the papers about the burn unit and had followed the instructions, I ate a good breakfast and drank plenty of water, I felt prepared for the most part. After arriving on the burn unit I felt there was nothing for me to do. I looked through the patient charts to know what to expect but then I just stood at the desk waiting for more instructions. Eventually, I asked one of the nurses if I could follow her into the patient rooms while she took vitals, and she said yes so I went with her. I didn't feel very welcome in the burn unit and I felt more in the way. I attempted to talk with the nurses and ask questions but there wasn't a lot going on. There was also another student observing so she got to see the first treatment and I was going to get to see the second. Once it was my turn, I washed my hands, put on the cap and plastic gown and was ready to see the burn treatment. I was very excited about what I was about to see. The patient was a 16 year old female who had been in a car crash, she had abrasions on her back, shoulder, and hands. The nurses took off the old dressings and they took her vitals. She was getting in the whirlpool when I started feeling nauseous and asked to sit down. The nurse suggested that I exit the room and cool down as well as drink something. I assured her that I would be fine once I sat down but then I decided it would be best to leave. I remember walking over the nurses station but I was already blacking out because I couldn't really see to sit down in the chair but I made it. The other nursing student asked if I would like some water and I replied yes. The next thing I remember I was waking up on the floor thinking, why do my ankles hurt so bad and why am I asleep on the floor in this awkward position. There were tons of people around me asking me a lot of questions. It was very overwhelming and I felt bombarded. I was very hot and sweaty and I was shaking pretty badly. They started hooking me up to all the machines to be sure everything was ok. The nurse that witnessed everything is telling the code nurses what happened, apparantly I passed out, stopped breathing for like 10 seconds and had a short siezure. I had to go to the Emergency room because they had to call a code when I wasn't breakthing. It was so weird to be the patient now, I felt so embarrassed that this happened to me. Being the patient as a nursing student is interesting because I knew what they were talking about but I can see how a normal person would be very freaked out by everything going on. They got me in a wheelchair and said they had to bring me down to the ER, now I was even more embarrassed. I didn't like having to be wheeled in a wheelchair because I hate when other people have to do things for me, it is so dehumanizing. As I rolled through the ER, my friend Laura was observing down there so she asked her nurse if she could come with me. It was so nice to have a familiar face with me now. The nurses were very nice and asked all of the routine questions. Then the doctor came to see me and asked me more questions. He determined that I was fine and that I should just rest for a while then I can be discharged. I didn't like having to sit in this room and do nothing, I felt bad that I was in this situation. It was also very frustrating that I had to find a ride to come get me and I did not have service in the room so I had to use the hospital's phone. It was interesting trying to explain the situation to the people I called while trying to find a ride. Eventually I got a hold of my brother who came to get me and everything turned out fine. It was a stressful time being the patient but it really helped me to understand what they are going through. I think I can be a better nurse because I have now been in the patient's shoes.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

If only

If only I did not feel compelled to talk to every single person I see, I would not be in this situation. However, I do feel compelled to speak so here goes nothing. The other day I walked out of my building and I was on my way over to the cafe for a late lunch. However, I was stalled before crossing the street because a car came speeding down the street! I am now laughing out loud about the ridiculousness of almost getting run over. Whatever happened to pedestrians having the ride away? Apparantly not. However, I am also now walking directly next to a guy that was headed the same way as me. He also was laughing at what had just happened so it wasn't like we could ignore the situation. And because I feel its awkward to not talk to him, I decide to start up a conversation. It starts off with a hello, how is your day. He begins to tell me that his day is going well, he is headed to his last class of the day and then basketball. I ask if he is a freshman and he replies yes, to which I ask him how the JV bball team is doing. He then proceeds to tell me that he is actually on the varsity. And me, not thinking replies, "oh really? I guess I haven't really seen you play, and since I cheer I figured I would of". He then tells me that he rotated his pelvis so he has been out for a while and that he actually used to start. Oops, my bad. Lets see how many times I can zing this kid in one conversation. I felt terrible, but I wasn't trying to be rude, it just happened. So a few more comments and the conversation ended as we parted ways.
Next part of the story: there was a basketball player eating dinner all by himself and he somewhat fit the description of the boy I had met earlier that day but since the boy from earlier had a hood on, I was not for sure of his hair color or if this was the right boy. So I decided to find out. I walked over to him said hello and asked if he was the guy that I had met earlier that day. he gives me a puzzled look and says, I don't know. I said, we almost got hit by a car. He replies, "Nope, not me, I think I would remember almost getting hit by a car". To which I reply, oops! OK, enjoy your dinner! And then I walk away hastily. Great times. Oh the awkward!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Oh the life I live...

So many good stories to post!
The first story happened over Christmas break while I was still at home. I was housesitting for my best friend's family while they were in Mexico. They happen to live out in the country in the middle of nowhere and a snowstorm and decided to hit my town. Awesome. My dad did not think it was a good idea for me to drive out to their house because he didn't think my car could make it. So he said he would take me out there after lunch and pick me up once he got off work. The roads had been cleared and it wasn't too bad getting out there, we just couldn't go all the way down the driveway. However, the wind was blowing like mad that day and the snow drifts had blown all the snow back into the road. My dad decides that the minivan can totally take on the snow and decides to continue down the gravel road towards my friends house. Turns out, the minivan is not as beastly as my dad would like to think. He calls me saying that he isn't going to make it and that I have two options: I can stay at the house all night or I can walk to him and help him dig out the van. There was no way I could just stay at the house thinking of my dad trying to push the van out all by himself. So I packed up the few things I brought with me and winterfied myself and I began on the long journey towards my dad. You should know that he got stuck pretty quickly after turning off the highway and onto the gravel road. Therefore I had to walk a half mile up and down the hills in the freezing cold and awful wind. It was so gratifying to finally make it to the van! By this time a nice man had stopped to help us and was attempting to pull the van out, somehow my dad got it really stuck. It took about another hour and 3 more cars of people to help us but we finally got it out! Ridiculous? I think yes.