the Testimony of a nurse – The first 12 months

Freshly graduated, I signed my first contract at the end of November, the same night I put on my white lab coat of “wheel” of day/night…


It is, the big day arrived. I’m going to make my debut is a nurse in the continuing care, service that I know well, I practiced during my internship pre-pro. Groggy, your stomach bulk and the psychological manifestations worthy of the greatest schizophrenic trying to have destabilised me but I would like good. I better understand the saying “to have ass between two chairs” ; a student or a nurse ? A little song run through my head and trying in vain to reassure myself “it’s okay, don’t worry, you’re not alone, there is the nurse “and then” but then in 3 nights it is me and that’s all.” Tonight it is three and to be honest it is pretty hard to position, but all will unfold well.


20h10 : Arrfff, in the end, the previous days were so simple, this evening I’m alone at the controls finally not quite, I will be accompanied by a nice health care aide and a ball of responsibilities… colleagues that make me the notes know me well and ask me how I feel. (pfff I just want to get away !). I hope to hear one of those releases where you know that all pinning but it is far from being the case.

I learn that a patient is quite ill ; my heart is used… I have in the pocket of the Bach flower remedies, ” rescue “, a name that brings to mind the swimmers-lifeguards in california. Moreover, it is only that I find a little comfort…in short…

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20h40 : All in bed except me and my accomplice asks me how long I have been doing the acting ; hummmmm, how to say ? With a tone full of false confidence, I told him that I am graduating in about 9 days and that I have been working for 72 hours (ah good!). It looks at me, mouth agape but quickly passes on to something else.

6 : 30 am: After a night without problems for the patients, I pass the baton with a voltage at the ceiling, bloodshot eyes ; a result of a night on the alert… this is it I’ve done it, “we did it” seems like a certain Dora…


Two months have passed. The first few days, I said to myself : “Who knows where I would be in 2 months ! “. This is a testimony that was not intended to reassure his readers. All that to highlight the gap between the studies and the taking of the position. All the nurses agree that the content of the training is only a magma of lessons that are sometimes very indigestible to learn, without any real desire to go back to the basics. The “by heart” it is well for some essential training (anticoagulants, anatomy and physiology,…) but in practice there are many other things that remain in the shade.

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To return to my job, I “rolled” my kicker, and the turn of the other services, but I’m still far from comfortable. There are also certain customs within hospital facilities that new graduates do not imagine. A kind of hazing not very pleasant and seems legitimate when one passes from the status of a newly graduate nurse who holds. This is the phone call the day before for the next day to replace the evening of Christmas eve… brand new graduate who will rebel sees himself denied by the entire facility in less than 24 hours !! To comfort myself, I tell myself that this is neither the first nor the last christmas spent at work.


I finally left the position of a wheel to be assimilated in the service of visceral surgery.

I take advantage of a schedule that is stable with consecutive rest, which was not the case as the wheels. I exclusively work in day shift. I feel good and much more comfortable with it, but one thing is for sure I am far from the ideal that I had made during my training. The workload is high and sometimes it is hard to work in good conditions…

Be a Nurse in the private sector is not really suitable with some of my values. We often speak in terms of profitability, activity, and that is something you don’t like it ! Nonetheless, it is necessary to make its weapons to be able to evolve.

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A year to the day, how is this possible ? I have the impression that it was yesterday…

The direction of the clinic has changed and it is with fear that the staff will welcome the new arrivals. The general atmosphere is not very good. Many of my colleagues have resigned. For my part, I am always in visceral surgery and I enjoy it a lot despite the problems of staff.

I feel confident but the workload becomes more and more oppressive and frustrating… It is fast and better… For the perfectionism, we revert (terrible to say that…). The fear of asking a urinary catheter in a man is an old memory… Note of the nursing students has helped me to turn definitively the page of status as a student ; I now feel far from it all. You lose a lot at the level of methodologies (approaches to care, techniques learned at the school).

Time flies and learning occurs on the job. It is at this point that it is important to tell a nurse it is a life-long learning. It is necessary to train without what, one day you wake up in the skin of the old dragon cross at the corner of a stage…

The result on the Website of the Nursing profession and