Working Nights in the ICU

Working nights stinks. We residents switch from day shifts to night shifts (and back to day shifts) with no extra time in between. And actually, those “switch days” count as one of our four days off we get per month. Not cool. I’ve officially completed 2/6 of my night shifts this month. And they’ve been rough. My homeostasis is totally off now. I eat two breakfasts, one when I wake up (at night) and the other when I get home from work (in the morning). The rest of the day and night is filled with tasty green smoothies (from this book) and rather yucky green juice from this healthy mix. Those foods keep me going alright, which isn’t easy to do.  Another frustrating thing I’ve found is that I’m absolutely freezing at night. Despite wearing one of my comfy hoodies over this fluffy fleece (yes, I look like a marshmallow), I still shiver throughout the night. Its incredibly uncomfortable.

On top of the innate badness of working nights is the fact that its in the ICU. With sick and dying patients. For 13+ hours per night. I’m in charge of what we call “cross-cover,” which is answering questions from the nurses or other providers for the 20-30 patients in the ICU. I do this in between admitting patients and literally running to codes. They say it gets better. I’ll be waiting for that to happen. Until then, I’ll just try to not get too upset. Its difficult when you only have a few available hours to sleep during the day, and your neighbors upstairs apparently like to be loud. All day. Ugh.

So, while I was happy and excited a few weeks ago, now I’m tired and depressed. I’m apparently roller coaster-ing, lol. I can’t even get out to take outfit pictures, which really stinks! I can’t wait to be back on days. I’ve found that if I get up around 445-5 that I can get in some blog pictures before heading to work. It actually makes me feel a little more human and is worth sacrificing a little sleep 🙂

I hope you all have an awesome holiday, if you’re lucky enough to have off!! I’m looking forward to catching up on everyone’s blog right after I catch up on sleep on Sunday. It can’t come soon enough!