Monday, January 21, 2008

We get breaks?

What a weekend from hell. I ran non stop.

It was another weekend of shifts where lunch breaks are what you can cram down while pulling your meds out of the pyxis, and legs bags should have been handed out when you clocked in. Nurses are truly the worse when it comes to taking care of ourselves, but we are the first to preach to our "care-taker" relatives of our patients about putting themselves first..yada yada... Why do we put our needs last? Why do we promise ourselves that bathroom break or bite to eat after we get that one patient's IV started, or triaged or painfree, and yet when accomplished there is always something else we view as more important than our own 1200ml bladder or 60s bloodsugar? I think after years of this it contributes to the burn out of us... or at least I am seeing it in me..

I have always prided myself on my work ethic.. Come in 20 minutes before my shift to get a feel for the night and get an idea of what is happening on the other floors so I know where my beds are available, always willing to stay over in the morning to help the dayshift get started, and make sure that my transfers and admissions are completed or at least the report is given. Consider true "leave the floor lunch" breaks as a luxury. And viewed the nurses that religiously took their breaks and left on the dot every morning as having poor work ethic and lazy.. But you know I think I am the one that needs a perception adjustment.. maybe I am a masochist.

This year I am really going to push myself to take my breaks or at least walk off the floor for a few minutes and take a breather... Go look at the moon, grab a soda or if nothing else go stand in the bay and watch our patients go from full functioning adults into complete debilitated crying/hyperventilating drama in the 30-50 yards it takes them to walk across the parking lot into view of admitting and the triage nurse. You gotta love those.

Ok so that is my plan as i sit here in bed typing this.. let's see what happens in reality.

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