I worked the night shift for my first couple of years in my hospital until finally my request to be moved to the day shift was granted. I thought I had it made now that I no longer needed to be unnaturally nocturnal, and keep hours like most human beings do instead of those of a bat. Lucky me,or so I thought. But, as with many things in life, be careful what you wish for. Let me explain.
The first thing I did not realize about working the day shift is that there are a lot more people floating around. Now, don’t get me wrong. I like people. I even grew up with some, although there were times I would have preferred to have been raised by a pack of wolves. But the problem with being in a service role is that the more people who are around, the more people want things from you, and usually at the same time. It’s hard being all things to all people. Unless, of course, you suffer from a multiple personality disorder, in which case you will need a different type of hospital than our, and several different name tags.
The other problem is that with all of the people running around at once, people are constantly bumping into you—with carts, stepping on your foot, dropping a tray, knocking you over, taking your chair, hogging the bathroom, etc.,etc. It’s just so much busier than other shifts.
Another problem with the day shift is that all the patients are awake. On the night shift, most are asleep and peaceful. When patients are awake, they tend to get bored. And cranky. And moody. It’s not a great recipe for a floor full of happy campers. They’re just really miserable to be around. I try not to add to their bad mood. I do things not to upset them. Like, for example, hide out in the supply closet so I won’t flip them the bird. I’m not generally like that, but I forget to take my anti-anxiety meds some mornings.
Another challenge of working the day shift is this is when the patients have their visitors. Now, this is a mixed bag. And, quite frankly, I’d like to remove some in a bag. Some of the patients are very sweet and nice because they think their spouse or grandparent will get better care if they are nicer to me then they have been since age 10 on the day before their birthday. This is known in the medical profession as “sucking up.” Look it up. Another type of patient visitor is the one where you cannot do enough for their patient. Nothing is good enough. Everything is a complaint. These are the type of people who, if they won the lottery, would complain that they had to drive all the way to the bank to cash the check.You know the type.
In any event, I am getting exhausted from just thinking about these things. I have to get back to work anyway. There’s a patient’s wife yelling for me because even numbered rooms make her superstitious. See what I have to go through? Where are there wolves when you need them?Like