May 23, 2013

Notes on Nursing: Meet Ashley!

Meet Ashley from Underneath the Georgia Pine!
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I received my Associate's Degree from Dalton State College in 2012. I was offered a job at a local hospital leading up to my graduation. I work on a General Surgery/Orthopedics/Neurological Floor. I take care of people who have had a hip or knee replacement, abdominal surgeries, and people who are recovering from having a stroke. We also take care of just about any other type of surgical patient you can think of, as well as broken bones and motor vehicle accidents.

How long have you been a nurse?
I have been a nurse for a year now.

What was the toughest part about going from nursing student to nurse?
 In my opinion, nursing school was nothing like what I do now. In nursing school, it felt like we took vital signs, passed meds, gave the patient a bath and then left. At my school, we were only on the floor from 8-2:30. Not being there for a full 12 hour shift, I didn't get a true idea of what to expect. Also, I'm sure you've all heard "Nurses eat their young." And all I can say is that it is 100% true. It feels like some nurses have forgot what its like to be fresh out of school

What area of nursing do you work in & what are some responsibilities unique to your job?
 I work on a General Surgery/Orthopedics/Neurological Floor, which is where I started as a nurse. I work on night shift and at my hospital there are no CNA's at night. I do all the care for my patients. To be honest, the lack of CNA's at night is the one thing that I generally dislike about my job. The orthopedic doctors want night shift to get the hips/knees up in the chair before day shift comes in. All of my nurses and I have to tag team and get all these patients up. We could never do it on our own and we could be a lot more proficient if we had some extra help. 

What is your favorite part of being a nurse? Least favorite?
 I love my patients! I could spend hours just sitting in with my patients and their families talking to them. My least favorite is the lack of help we have like I mentioned above. They give us 5 or 6 patients a piece with no CNA. Many of our patients are either bedridden and/or confused or had just had a knee replacement and are dealing with mobility problems. I just find myself not moving from room to room fast enough and dealing with patients who wanted their diet coke 5 minutes ago! LOL! Otherwise I love my job!

What made you want to be a nurse?
I love taking care of people!

What was your experience with nursing school & the NCLEX like?
I struggled in nursing school! Any nurse can tell you that a test in nursing school was unlike any other test you've taken in your life. There is just so much to remember and you really do learn prioritization in nursing school. The NCLEX scares every nursing student! It really wasn't that bad! It took me a little over an hour and I passed in 127 questions. I remember when the computer didn't shut off in 75 questions, I went in to panic mode! I just tried to stay calm and answer the questions to the best of my knowledge.  

Favorite nursing skill to perform?
I'm really good at putting in catheters. All I can say is that sometimes women have strange anatomy and it's not as easy as it seems.

Any advice for nursing students or new grads?
 Just put yourself out there! Jump at any opportunity to learn and observe. Don't get upset when an older nurse says something critical to you, they don't mean to hurt your feelings. Never be afraid to ask a question. Continue your education! I'm getting my BSN this fall!


Thanks so much for being a part of Notes on Nursing, Ashley! Good luck with school in the fall!!

If you are a nurse or nursing student & would like to have you & your blog featured in Notes on Nursing, leave a comment below or e-mail me at!

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  1. This sounds about like what I'm going to be doing - Orthopedics floor Night shift.
    I'm taking my NCLEX next tuesday.
    So far, everyone in my class who's taken it has passed. HOPING this trend sticks!!

    Loved the feature from a real live nurse 1 year out of school! It gives us all coming out of school hope ;)

  2. Thanks for having me on your blog today!