Resurgence of Anxiety

Hello All,

So this is kind of both a life post and a nursing post, but i have been having a lot more anxiety lately. I think there are several factors that play into this, but I definitely noticed an increase.

I thought maybe it was (those who don’t appreciate lady talk avert your eyes) where I was in my cycle, but after several days of feeling melancholy, I felt like I needed to something more. After having now settled in somewhat to my new surroundings, I have come to the conclusion that I need to do some more self care.

One of the first things that my supervisor told me when I started working on my new unit was to take my time to settle into the unit before taking on anything extra. She said to find a mentor or a coworker that you connect with that you can ask questions or feel comfortable talking to. So now that I feel I have been able to do this, I felt like it was time to put some effort back into me, so what better day than Valentine’s Day.

As I lay in bed after a lovely dinner cooked by Ethan (salmon and veggies yum!) and some beautiful gifts (hello Tiffany bracelet…

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and some lovely smelling candles)

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we watched some TV. As we were laying in bed, Ethan snoozing away, and myself awake watching TV, I found that I was feeling amped up and starting to feel that edgy feeling coming on of just wanting to jump out of my skin.

SOOOO being 1:30am I decided naturally that it was time to hop on the treadmill. It had been WAY too long since I had done that, so I only lasted about 15 minutes, but those 15 minutes really helped take the edge off and help me get over that hump of wanting to jump out of my skin.

I now remember the importance of self care, especially in nursing. I need to make sure to take time to care for myself so I can care for others. What is your favorite form of self care? Let me know in the comments 🙂

Until next time

~Niki

New Beginnings

Well here we are again, way over due for a post, but I have a good excuse I promise! This one is going to be sort of a combined nursing and lifestyle post, so bear with me, there is a lot to update, and I will try to be succinct and not bore you too much.

I have now moved to a new city, gotten a new job, and moved into a new apartment with a new roommate. Well I guess we can call him a roommate for arguments sake, but really he’s my boyfriend (yay! finally, that only took 2.5 years).

I now reside in the beautiful and diverse San Francisco, CA. I know that I still can’t believe that I live here.

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I have a new job in an Intermediate ICU for Neurosurgery, the acuity is DEFINITELY a lot higher than that of my previous position, but I am excited for the challenge that it will bring in the future and all that I will learn. So far everyone at work has been friendly and helpful and want to see me succeed, which makes for a great work environment (not that I didn’t have this before, it’s just always something I am worried about when going to a new place).

My new apartment is fabulous, and is within short walking distance to…

  1. The train, which I take for work most days
  2. Great restaurants
  3. Union Square
  4. The Embarcadero
  5. And several other things which I will stop listing otherwise this list will be a mile long

which is nice for afternoon strolls and little mini weekend adventures. Especially now that I live with…

ETHAN! That’s the boyfriend for those of you who don’t know. He’s great and puts up with my antics so that makes everything better. We have been doing little day trips and walking around in places and decorating the apartment, which makes me happy so all in all not so bad :).

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Little day-cation to Stinson Beach! So pretty!

Ozzie the cat tolerated the move well, it took him a couple of days to warm up to the idea of the new apartment, but now he loves to sit in front of the window and bird watch, and keep a close eye on all of the goings on occurring on the street outside our window.

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Excuse the mess behind this picture, we were still trying to figure out where everything should go, but Oz just looks so content I had to post this picture :).

Until next time, or if there is anything you would like to hear about in particular, leave a message in the comments!

~Niki

Leaving My First Job

Hey All!

I am writing this post more directed to nursing, but I think that a lot of the ideas that I will be sharing in this post apply to all areas of work. I am going to write about how quitting my first job went for me.

I will be the first to admit I DREADED this. I was afraid of the reaction I would receive, I was nervous I would say something wrong, and I was anxious about leaving the warm, loving, supportive environment I had grown so familiar to for something different. But this is how we grow, by throwing ourselves into the scary abyss and seeing what results.

I remember feeling OK walking into the building, I remember feeling fine in the elevator, but one I stepped of that elevator, my whole body felt a sense of dread wash over. I am definitely one of those people that doesn’t like confrontation or uncomfortable conversations (Yes yes, I know I am a nurse and I have these with patients everyday, but this just felt different). So I took a moment and composed myself, and did what I do best, walked into my managers office and just did what I needed to do. I was polite and direct and kept it brief, I didn’t ramble on and talk about all of the reasons etc, I just said I was leaving for personal reasons and that I appreciated the opportunity and left it at that. We had a very brief conversation, and that was the end of it.

I had built it up so much in my head that it was almost embarrassing. Definitely sounds like something I would do though.

Telling my coworkers was my next step, this was less daunting to me, but I still felt bad as they had become like family to me as any good nursing unit is. People were of course sad to see me go, but wished me luck and totally understood my need/want to move and progress and explore my options now while I was not as tied down.

I hope this didn’t sound too ranty, but hey it was more of a feelings post. Anyone have a scenario they would like to share, or a topic they would like to hear about? Just leave a comment 🙂

~Niki

That Crazy Night Shift

Hello All!

I have recently switched back to night shift (as I previously stated in my other post, into higher acuity the PCU), and I totally loving it oddly enough. It is definitely hard on your body, but I think being on a great unit with great people helps! I have completed my “preceptor days” and am now working on my own in this unit. Classes start tomorrow for extra education and training and there is a lot to learn, but I am definitely excited for the challenge. I feel like just in the last 4 short weeks I have learned and grown so much in my role, but have only touched the tip of the ice berg!

I think that my hardest challenge so far has been switching from computer to paper charting, there is no charting by exception when you have to write your assessment down by hand.

Anyway back to the night shift thing, I gave up my coveted day position and returned to the land of the night, and I can honestly say I am not looking back. It’s been about a month and I truly am ok with working nights, occasionally its more difficult to make plans with the day walkers, and get errands done, but in the overall scheme of things it isn’t so different from the day time its just perpetually dark. Definitely need to make sure to take a Vitamin D supplement as last time I was on night shift I fell into the deficient levels and was told by my doctor that I needed to supplement.

I thought it would be difficult to stay awake and that my system would hate switching back, but I think that my body tends to do slightly better with a night shift schedule as I am SUPER not a morning person (Those 5am wake up calls for me were brutal). Now that I work night shift, I have to plan seeing my family and friends more, but the pay is a bit better so it sort of evens out in the end.

If you have any comments or suggestions on current or ideas for future posts, post them in the comments!

Until next time

~Niki

Long Overdue

Sooooo Hello everyone,

I have been in a lot of transition, so I apologize for not having posted anything for a couple of months. (Shame on me), but now that things have settled down some, hopefully I am going to get back on track. I’ve been moving around in my job, and taking on new hobbies, which I will address in the lifestyle section of this blog since I know some of you readers are just interested in the nursing part of this.

First things first, I am no longer a new graduate nurse. YAY! I graduated into being in the scary position to do things on my own. I was moved to an NOST (Neuro/Ortho/Surgical/Truama) unit on day shift and stayed there just over a month. We saw all kinds of people, but a lot of them were traumatic falls, voluntary joint replacements, or car accidents. Then I was offered the opportunity to go to PCU (Progressive Care) on night shift, and after about 20 minutes of deliberation decided the night shift was worth that jump, and let me tell you its only been about a week, but I am so much happier and love the unit and people that I am working with! As it has been one of my goals all along to go to higher acuity care, this was definitely the right  move, and the people are amazing.

Part 2, My 1 and only sister and her fiancee are moving to wait for it… JAPAN. Not like up the coast or anything, but half way across the world to Okinawa, Japan. I am excited for her to get to move to a cool new place (and for the excuse of a vacation to Japan 😉 ) I know selfish, but gonna take advantage while shes there. I’m both sad and excited to see her go, but I know it will be good for them and they’re going to have so much fun. She has been thinking about maybe starting a blog for her adventures so if she ever  does get on top of that I will post her link in one of my future posts 🙂

Back to the nursing part of things. I have quite a bit of further education to complete before I am to be on my own in the PCU, drips, medication titration, and EKG classes to name a few. It feels good to feel like I am learning more again and like I am feeling challenged.

Until next time, post what you would like to hear more about in the comments!

 

~Niki

Crazy Days

Oh man!

So the other day I had one of the craziest days I have ever had. I even stayed behind for an extra hour because I had to finish my charting (something I’ve never done before). I must admit that despite being such a ridiculous day and feeling like i just fell behind on everything I actually kind of liked being able to deliver more patient care. We as nurses and healthcare members are so bogged down by all of the charting that we need to do, that I think our patient care suffers unfortunately. I would love to spend a half hour just chatting with my patients and getting to know them better.

I feel like there is so much that is lost by having the ability taken from us to talk to patients. There is something therapeutic to have someone devote their full attention to what you have to say, even if it is only for a few minutes.

If we could find an efficient electronic medical record that would allow us to quickly chart an assessment, wouldn’t that allow us to get back to whats really important? Our patients and their care.

 

Thoughts? This post took a bit of a different turn than I was expecting…

Niki

Flip Flopping

No I don’t mean like the shoe… 🙂

Hey all!

So as you may know, I’m a nurse (duh) but I recently switched back to a day shift. Some of you are probably thinking HOORAY! that must be awesome for you, and while I mostly would have to agree with you, there were some initial bumps in the road for me.

The first day of switching back was met with some initial anxiety because I remember how helpless and frazzled I felt those initial 10 weeks I was working day shift as a brand new nurse. However, my first day back I felt it went a lot more smoothly, and I seemed to have a much better grasp of what was going on as a whole with patient care and how the hospital works as a system.

One of the issues I feel that I ran into was after that first day I was completely wiped out. Despite being on a “real people schedule” I was so tired I slept most of the next day and then slept that night! Talk about feeling like a crazy person. After that I seem to have pretty effectively switched back to a day shift cycle. I however have also noticed that I am having more of a constant low grade headache. This I think has more to do with my decreased caffeine intake (1 Fizz stick vs 2, Thank you Arbonne for the awesome caffeine) The caffeine source is great, but my personal choice to have less of an intake I think resulted in a little bit of withdrawal headaches. Oops… my bad.

As with anything that changes in your life, there needs to be a grace period for adjustment, and sometimes that adjustment is just a little more difficult than you anticipated.

Anyone had difficulty with transitioning? I know there are some of you out there that are on a constant rotation. How do you deal? Any tips and tricks for the rest of us?

Please feel free to leave them in the comments 🙂

~Niki

 

PS here is a cup of coffee that I enjoyed in the midmorning 🙂

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