I have made it through the first two weeks at the new job. The Operating Room is a very dynamic environment and there is so much to learn before I will feel comfortable as a nurse. The first couple weeks have been busy with general hospital orientation classes, shadowing RNs in the OR and working through my THREE INCH THICK orientation binder.
The orientation period in the OR is about 6 months long. Even though I accepted a .6 position (24 hrs/week), I will be working full time during the orientation period. And…it is exhausting. I have about a 45 minute commute each way. And my brain is working overtime trying to learn all this new information. By the time I get home, I am pretty wiped out. (My exercise routing has taken a hit) I know that things will get easier as I start to learn the new role and even better when I am able to cut down to part time. It is just going to be a busy few months.
I was able to shadow on a couple of cases this week. There are two main ‘teams’ in the surgery department: ONS (Ortho, Neuro, Spine) and General (general, Ear/Nose/Throat, Plastics, Robotics). At some point during the orientation process, I will choose which team I want to work on. But, I will orient to both so I can make an informed decision. I’ve been in several Ortho cases, one general case and a C-Section. I’m looking forward to next week to see what other cases I will be exposed to. I know that at least one day will be devoted to making some progress in the THREE INCH THICK orientation binder. And I have one day of general nursing orientation with other new nurse hires from other departments.
The sheer volume of things I have to learn is completely overwhelming. Several times a day I have to remind myself that I don’t have to know all of it tomorrow. There are a lot of nurses in the department and they were all in my shoes at one point. If they can learn it, so can I. I am going to have to keep telling myself this whenever I start to freak out!
I really think I am going to love this job. The people have been great so far. They understand how much there is to learn and they know that it can be really overwhelming. There are also just a lot of people to meet. I’m glad that everyone is wearing a name badge! There are a lot of nurses and surgery techs and CNAs. Then there are the anesthesiologists and the nurse anesthetists. Of course, there are also the surgeons and on most cases there is a surgical assistant. There are a lot of people in the operating room…which is very comforting!
I am looking forward to learning as much as I can. This is what I have worked so hard for the past few years and it is really exciting to finally be in a position where I am able to apply some of what I have learned.