Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Getting by

Dear Student Nurses of the World,

Settle around while Momma Somnambulant tells you a little story.

If you haven't heard the phrase already, one day, someone will tell you that nurses "eat their young". And then you'll think about it for a minute or awhile and decide either: 1) Bring it on, betch or 2) Oh, dear [deity of your choice], please please PLEASE let that never happen to me. But somehow, you will prepare yourself (you think) and almost absolutely at some point, it will happen.

Now that you know, allow me to paint a picture: you've been working with some really receptive and amazing nurses And then, one day, it happens. Some burned out, condescending mega-snatch who realized somewhere along the way that she hates her work and maybe even her life is informed she's having a student for the day and only sees an indentured servant/dumping ground for all her angst. You're treated badly and not in the "wahhhhh I'm going to stomp my feet because my nurse didn't give me warm fuzzies" kind of way. More like the nurse making fun of you in front of patients kind of way. Or giving you her grunt work and chuckling with the staff about it at the nurses' station kind of way.

And, if you're like a certain smart-mouthed student nurse who blogs, you'll momentarily go to a happy place where you lay into this douchecake with hurricane-force f-bombs and excellently timed insults. Then she cries. It's awesome and beautiful. Eventually, you have to come back to reality and go to the next ri-damn-diculous thing you're asked to do.

But, sadly, such is the way of nursing school (unless someone gets really out of line, of course). So, you get through the day (or days, in this storyteller's case), talk shit with your classmates over a drink or four, and hopefully come home to someone who loves you (and who has had the foresight to get ice cream after reading your enraged and expletive-filled texts).

Most importantly, you tuck it into the back of your head for some horrible and hectic shift years from now when you're handed a student nurse. You remember being there and try to be the nurse you wish you'd had on a day that it would have meant so much.

There's your lesson for the day. Use it as you will.


P.S. One side effect of this whole ordeal is a greater appreciation for my friends who are nurses, both in my daily life and who blog as well as those nurses at clinicals who have patiently sacrificed a lot of their time to let me learn and try new things.


Drofen said...

I'm still deciding...


I'm sorry you may or may not have had a bad day. Hope the ice cream is a cool salve to your soul.


RUbirdie said...

I've had a couple of those days. My day in the OR was the worst. Unfortunately for me that was the rotation I was looking forward to the most. I regret not saying a little more than I did...but in the end I took the high road. That gives me SOME comfort. I found out that she treated everyone like it wasn't just me. She was a mean, mean person and I have no idea why she would even choose to be a nurse!

laura.d. said...

I am afraid of meeting those scary nurses. Nurses are supposed to be nice, not mean.