First week on the job

02 April 2020
3 min read
Volume 28 · Issue 4

Abstract

Following three years of study, it was time to step out into the role Alice Wilson had been training for. Here, she recounts her first week as a newly qualified midwife

‘No one can prepare you for the transition from student to qualified practitioner.’ These are the wise words of my mum, former intensive treatment unit nurse and current matron. She's absolutely right. At university, we had talks about the process of qualification: what to do and what to expect. I'd studied and trained for three years for this moment. ‘So why,’ I thought, as I stood in front of the mirror in my brand new uniform on my first day on shift, ‘do I feel like I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing?’

I swung from nausea to excitement to dread all within the first hour, and by the end of the day, I was exhausted. Everyone had said how exciting it was to finally have your PIN and start working your way, with no one looking over your shoulder the whole time; how come I felt so out of my depth? The job was the same that I had been doing for three years, but the responsibility had increased tenfold.

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