"Every day, I know I’ve impacted someone's life in a positive way. I am a nurse anesthetist now and I love knowing that I have been there for my patients. I help to alleviate their fears and be with them during a frightening experience in their lives."
My first degree was in Sociology. I thought I could use my caring qualities with this degree but I shuffled papers all day. Then my dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and I spent a lot of time with him in the ICU. I bonded with the nurses and they were so caring and patient. I loved the one-on-one contact and the continuity of care. I asked one of the nurses about her career and the education needed. After my dad died, I went to my community college and enrolled in the nursing program.
Not only do I get to practice anesthesia, I get to educate nurses who are on their journey to being a nurse anesthetist.
What a typical work shift is like for me
I work 8 hours a day. That's my choice. I go into my OR room in the morning and set up my room. Next, I go to the Holding Area to meet, interview, get consent, and do an anesthesia physical on my patient. I talk to them about their anesthesia, what to expect, the anesthesia I will give them, and the PACU area. I answer all their questions and then off to the operating room. I put my patient to sleep and then the surgeon does his procedure. During the procedure I mange my patient's hemodynamic status and pain level, as well as doing my charting. When the surgery is completed I wake my patient up, move them from the operating table to their bed and take them to PACU. I give report to the PACU nurse, write post-op pain orders and discharge orders. Always before I leave the PACU I check on my patient, whether they are too sleepy to talk or not. Upon leaving PACU I always have this feeling of satisfaction and content, then off to see my next patient.
Always make and take time for yourself, family, and those you love. If you are no good to yourself, you are no good to your patient.