this is the shift that never ends…
Yesterday I got up at 5 because Luca was up briefly and I figured what’s the point of going back to bed, right? I had work to get to. Six hours of sleep later, I was awake and ready to face the day.
Apparently I was very tired when I agreed to stay and work a 16 hour shift. I felt bad. At 7 o’clock there would only be 4 nurses on the floor, which translates to 8 patients per nurse. Not to mention the acuity of the patients…woah. I mean, it was bad. Since I had a decent group of people, I figured I could stay and help out.
At 1 o’clock, I thought, well, only 10 more hours!
At 3 o’clock I was thinking what a bad idea this was turning out to be.
At 3:30 my patient finally opened up to me and told me that she’s been seriously depressed for a while now and wants to talk to someone. That made me feel good.
At 5 o’clock I got my second wind. (Techincally I would have been there anyway.)
At 7 0’clock I passed all of my meds, minus a few due at 10.
At 7:30 I tucked in the majority of my patients and cleaned their rooms.
At 8:30 I thought what a dumb, dumb girl I was.
At 9 o’clock I was too busy doing a complete bed change on a guy who was extremely large and in charge.
At 9:30 I was back to hating myself, especially because if I sat I wouldn’t get back up.
At 10 I thought, well I am almost there. Lynn said I could leave at 10:30! Go me, go!
At 10:30 my patient tells me he wants to commit suicide.
I left the building at 11:10. Now, don’t see me as insensitive for sighing when someone says they want to kill themselves. In the words of the charge nurse, “That man isn’t going to hurt himself anymore than there’s a man in the moon.” And that’s the truth. He was lonely and wanted attention, but unfortunately, that required me to call the doctor, get a psych consult, get someone to sit with him during the night and a lot of hand holding.
It was a very, very long shift. But it could have been way worse. I had no major catastrophe and I got to spend some really good quality time with my patients. I sat and talked with three of them for 45 minutes each. That isn’t normal. But it was a welcomed change.
See, on Friday, I was having such a day that I was beginning to question why I was a nurse. I hate days like that. I always answer myself, because it’s what you were born to do and you’re damn good at it.
While I was making a patient’s bed around 3 (near the end of my shift) my boss came over and said that Jay (my old boss) needed to speak with me at the desk. I looked over at Tanya and said, “Am I in trouble? I hate confrontation, this isn’t a confrontation is it? Because I don’t deal well with confrontation.” She said it wasn’t, but that she had no idea what it was about, but she said she’d wait and walk up with me.
See, now, that alone should have made me wonder. I seriously thought I was going to get fired or something. I started racking my brain, thinking of anything that I had done wrong. OMG, you forgot to sign off a pain response a few weeks back. Could that be it?
I’m such a nerd.
When I got to the desk, the big wigs of my LPN Council were waiting for me, along with some other co-workers.
“Oh crap. What did I do now?”
“Nothing except for win the 2010 LPN Recognition Award!”
“Whaa? Seriously? I won? I had no idea you were even picking someone today!”
And that is, my friends, how I became the 2010 LPN of the year. (At St. Margaret Hospital only.)
*There are photos that Jay took with his blackberry, however he has yet to upload them. I’m scared to see them because it was the end of a really long shift.*