The First Day on the Wards
Last night was the night before our first full day on the wards in complete uniform. We were all a little nervous about it and spent the evening doing up each other’s hair, reassuring each other and trying to calm our own nerves.
The next morning I looked over at the hospital and my knees shook. It looked so big – and what would we do for a whole day. All I knew was how to take temperatures. How long would that last?
Getting into uniform took a little longer this morning – those darned pins! My hands seemed to shake and it had to be just right. Maybe after some practice I won’t have to get up at 6:15 a.m. any more.
Well, I made it through the day – barely. How am I going to stand five days a week of this? I feel so tired after only one day. I must have walked miles but I only got into trouble a few times. It’s a good thing the intermediates and seniors were around to help; they seem to know so much.
I wonder if I’ll ever get to be like them???
Student nurse, Class of 1964
Listen to Charlotte, Class of 1969, talk about her first patient.
Audio clip with transcript: Charlotte talks about her first patient.