Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Graveyard Shift and Sleeping Spells

My orientation for work was over about a week or two ago as my re-assessment went into the green --- duh!!  I know how to memorize answers and type it on a computer screen, if given the chance to study.  Believe me if you come in with fevers after chemotherapy, you can bet your a$$, I am gonna poke you with a needle (even you e-speed, not a big one though), draw some blood cultures, give you an IV and anticipate the doctor wants you on vancomycin and zosyn for the infection and tylenol for the fever, and then if you start pooping all over on me I'm gonna grab a poop sample too -- So look out and don't get sick or I'll be coming for you :)

Anyway, my orientation was thankfully extended another few weeks, because I somehow managed to avoid the graveyard shift and floating over to bone marrow transplant and leukemia to work.  BMT scares the crap out of me because those people have absolutely no white blood cells to fight infection and even family members can't kiss or hug them when they are in!!  Just sneezing on them could kill them.  I went up there for a few hours this past weekend and then they stuck me on nights all week this week and next week. 

Nights shift is 7p-7:30a.  It has it's benefits.  There a less orders going in and the patients usually go to sleep, so you just have to assess them and pass meds until about 10:00p then you can chart and read up on the notes to better understand each case.  There are a few that wake up in pain and need meds or have round the clock antibiotics, but it is definitely more my speed and I make more money working night shift, simply because it's night shift.  The only down side is I can't sleep!  I tried to stay up late on Sunday, but was out like a light before midnight.  I woke up at 8:00am on Monday and had some breakfast and then went back to bed until a little before noon.  The first night was fine for me.  I got home around 10:00a on Tuesday and was only able to sleep from 11am-2p.  I ate something and read a book until 4p and was able to sleep for another hour.  I had to shower at 5p and head to work and knew it was going to be ugly by 7:30a the next morning.  The shift went fairly smooth.  I picked up two patients at 11:30p, which I hate because they are already alseep and I have to wake them up to assess them unfortunatley or wait until early morning when lab comes around and cluster the care.  It can put me behind on my charting then and if something goes wrong I haven't assessed them and pin-pointing the problem becomes more difficult, so waking them up it is. 

I left around 8:15am, report took forever and before I was even half way home I could feel myself dozing off.  I called my dad and tried to call to him, but my hand was shaking as I held the phone.  Finally, I pulled into the JCC on S. Woodland.  I was about half way home and I knew it was too risky.  I pulled into a spot in the back, grabbed my Indians blanket and slept in my truck for an hour and a half, before some landscaper's mower hit my truck with some rocks and woke me up.  I drove home and went straight to bed around 11am and didn't wake up until 7:30pm.  I managed to eat something and stay awake until 9:30pm before going back to bed and not moving until 10:00am this morning.

I have to do it all over again this Saturday and Sunday, so I really have to get a game plan together.  I can't be driving home in rush hour traffic dead to the world, only to sleep for an entire day after!  I'm thinking until I figure this sleeping in the day time thing out (from 9am-5pm) I am going to have to take some sleeping pills to help me.  I can't afford to be unsafe at work or in my car.  Maybe I will be crashing at the A-train hotel more often than even he knows (also, feel free to leave a comment for him that he owes a post regarding his race at Taylorsville, if you have time!!)


E-Speed said...

hey you are always welcome to crash at our place too! as long as you don't mind the mess! i can get you a key made up. just let me know!

iJuls said...

give it time; you'll settle in. i worked 7p - 7a for more years than i care to admit. it was hardest when my first-born was an infant. i worked friday-sunday and suffered dearly on monday morning. oh, and i slept in many a parking lot.