My last clinical was actually really boring. I was a little nervous about having my first teenager but not as nervous as my first baby two weeks ago. I have had teenagers (18+) on my med/surg floor at home, but only a couple. The baby 2 weeks ago was definitely my first baby patient. What I'm most scared of is getting a 2-10 YO because to me, that's a scary age. That's why I'm still a little hesitant in PEDS and certain about maternity. But I guess I have to just take one and hope for the best. Maybe I'll love and then change my mind about PEDS. This is the breakdown of my fear: Ages 2-4= I've seen some kids already in the hallway that do nothing but scream, even with their parent's right there. There is just no reasoning with them…I like to reason with my patients, to have a conversation with them. Ages 5-10 are more reasonable but I think less trustworthy…more secretive and afraid. I just don't know what to say to them. My younger sister can approach any kid and within 5 minutes, they love her and want to be her best friend. She is 16. But even with my own cousins who I see a couple times a year and range in age from 4-12, there just seems to be a barrier between us no matter how hard I try. I don't want there to be, I think they are cute and I would love to sit and talk with them but when me and my sister stand together, they always flock to her first. Am I the scary adult already? Am I less approachable? Is there an invisible barrier/ wall that I put up around me that I am unaware of? Most of the time, when I am alone with them, (whether I'm babysitting or just happen to be alone for whatever reason) I just don't know what to say. I find talks about "Dora the Explorer" boring, really. I can't seem to temporarily come down to their level. I become afraid of appearing too corny, and they'll see right through me. On the other hand I am afraid of coming off as too official and scary. I need to figure out a nice in-between. I like the age of 10+ because I can treat them more like an adult. They really are like miniature adults….and usually surprisingly smart.
The other thing I wanted to mention this journal was my teenager this week in clinical. First off, teenagers are hard because they are a whole different species. Seriously. And I just got done being a teenager only 2 years ago, and they are already turning into another species. I guess I'm getting old. She really didn't want to be bothered. I tried to not let that stop me and to pry for the right information and show her that she can talk to me, but I got nothing. I could tell she thought it was awkward. On Friday this week we are all required to go to Trenton High school for a 5 week "self esteem" session. It's all sophomore girls and they elect to be in this instead of gym class. It's a nice program because they get counseled on correct nutrition; they have a workout every day, etc. Our job is to come in here on Fridays for five weeks and basically, be a friend. We are supposed to counsel them on drugs, alcohol, smoking…better nutrition, their caffeine intake, how much sleep they get, tips for their future, tips for school…you name it. Needless to say, I'm a little nervous, but I'm nervous with every new thing I do so this isn't any different. I need to break that habit. I'm always nervous about new experiences. I guess I'm only human.
This year I've been trying something new. I'm trying to live by the motto "Do what you're afraid of". I have always lived my life scared, and taking risks and jumping off mountains only when I have to for a grade or something job related. And I get really stressed about it usually. But this year…even though I am scared as **#(*@# sometimes, I have decided to do a couple things I thought I would never do. So far I really like the first thing I decided to do. I joined my school's EMS squad. I have always wanted to join a squad at home, but never gathered up the courage, because like I said, I've been so afraid living behind my rock. It's time to step out there, and even though I'm very scared at first, like everything else, I'll get used to it and eventually do really great. And hey, if I hate it after a couple months, guess what, I gave it a try. I can say that I tried it and I did it. Personally, I love the adrenaline rush I get after I do something I was really afraid to do and then I surprise myself because I am actually really good at it and come out feeling amazing…My second decision is still on the down low, something I am still heavily contemplating. Will tell later on if I actually decide to join. J (I'm leaning towards yes.) I have to just cross my fingers, pray like hell, relax a little and dive in! My life lately has just been so…dull. I really needed to make some changes. I need to stop hiding and taking the safe routes. Good things will come out of this, I know it. Til next post (which will be very soon…),
~A writer in a nurse's body.