A useful category that we often use only as a sign on the calender to identify which days are marked for overtime pay. Yet days off is so essential, so healing, so necessary to returning to work in a state that makes you useful.
Perhaps it is only me that feels exhausted and drained by this job. I watch the others and I am transfixed by how much better they are at it. Their passiona nd committment to being all that they should be does not inspire me to be more, only shows me that I lack.
Last shift I sat perched on my chair in the few moments between alarms and fluid boluses and chest tube check and felt a remenent of the past me when I was alert and invigourated by the unstable, the critically ill child. I was on watch, my mind alive and considering the minute changes and what they portended. I could almost touch that again, but the distance was too far.
Instead I could feel the adrenalin axiety dragging my soul through it’s paces. A sense of impending doom for the night reminded me that what I had said years ago about this job….hours of stark boredom interspersed with sheer terror. The small new baby soft that only newborns can have gradually grew over the 12 hours into a less endearing infant who required my anxious dance at his bedside. Where was my usual calm? Where was my typical aura of serentity and competence? Have I been away from the bedside that long?
A sense of dissatisfaction permeates each shift it seems. I want something different, I long for and daydream about not working and look towards my days off like a salvation. First day to sleep then second day to feel human again and do household tasks. Washing the kitchen floor becomes a ritual that sooths and regenerates. Standing in the hallway looking ionto the kitchen and appreciating the simple cleaness and homey feel of tea cups and school books on the table. I wander through my home enjoying the silence unburdened by tv or radio or alarms ringing. I just want to sit and soak in the sense of serenity. Too soon I am within sight of the next shift and I start my system’s symptom check to determin if there is any possibility of illness. Unfortunately all I can find is chapped lips….can I work this into a sick call?