I am a RN at a residential facility (campus- apartment type setting) for kids with severe behavioral disorders due to autism – brain trauma – congenital things etc.- i basically when i work nights walk around campus- and knock on apt doors and ck to see if all the kids are OK – then i hit the lockdown areas and see on the monitors each kid in in bed and document that – then for the rest of the night ( usually from 1-2am till 5: 50 am ) i sit in my office waiting for a phone call if anyone needs me for anything – and i can basically do what i please – i read- cut coupons – sometimes even catnap with my head next to the phone for about 15-20 min – so it is very unstressful 90% of the time that 10% of the time if kids hurts themselves or has seizures etc. or is sick bad enough to need to be sent to the hospital etc. is when it gets hectic especially if you have several; kids having a problem at the same time- but i use to work in a trauma floor so what might be called hectic by another nurse is not so for me …
at 5: 30 AM i give out some meds to some elderly MR woman in my building and i give report and leave at six am- i am home before 10 min – if i work days on the weekend ( 6a-2pm ) i just deal with the apartments not the lock-downs and just pour a lot meds – put on bandages do a few tube feedings etc and be available for any problems with the kids- there are staff in each apartment that deal with the kids with their actual behavioral problems.
The killer in giving it up fully is that for what i do i make $19 an hour base rate and i can make from $3 to $7 an hour bonus pay on the weekends – and i like the kids – i was stuck between being a special ed teacher and a nurse when i made the decision to be a nurse so the kids do not upset me – there is a high turnover where i work because some people just cannot handle the kids not being “normal ” — i guess i kind of feel that although is a job that i am kind of giving back by helping these kids too and they like seeing familiar faces rather than a different agency nurse every day = i have done things way past job expectations in the past i guess beach i feel the kids need a nice place to live ( ie repasted wall paper borders falling down in office / apartment using the wallpaper border paste i had at home etc )
i am worried about working past my 6th – 7th month as i will not be as quick as a normally am if i need to duck thrown meds- get out of the way of an unexpected ” behavior ” etc. and some nurses have been hit etc – but i am pretty careful and was only very lightly kicked and hit 1 x when i was new and didn’t know much about the kids now i know who to watch their eye s to know if they are going to act ut and who not too get too close to- to let them approach me for their meds . etc
so i am pretty sur ei will get out of there in early December at the latest for my maternity leave.