10 minutes for random rambling about being on-call.

I’ve had alot of guilt over not posting for the past 2 weeks.

I haven’t had any time for posting for the last 2 weeks!

But I often thought about what to write: I was on call for our practice the week leading up to and then including Thanksgiving, and there were many blog-worthy moments. I wanted to share my thoughts on major holidays in the Hospital, to describe that eerie quiet-hospital feeling, when there is practically nobody around, the office is dark and spooky, and there is bad-for-you-food in all the nurses’ stations, and all the families are there visiting and want to talk, and all I want to do is get the work done and go home to my kids and turkey.

Then, as I was writing notes in the respiratory step-down unit, the beeping and buzzing and alarming of all the vents jolted me into a PTSD moment, remembering residency on-call, those now-illegal 36-hour long ICU shifts, feeling so tired and weary and beaten down as to be nauseated for much of it… I remembered when one of my male colleagues pulled a 36 hour shift in the Neonatal ICU, and the nurses went to the local CVS and bought him underwear. There was such a female nurse/ male doctor cutesie friendly vibe where I trained… and the opposite also, the female nurse/ female doctor cattiness/ nastiness that I never understood, and always bit me in the ass.  That memory annoyed me still, over 10 years later. I am thankful that here, now, in 2012, there has been a strong emphasis on teamwork, and I rarely get a nasty catty vibe from any nurse. I don’t know if that’s a sign of the times, the fact that I’m in a better hospital system, or the fact that I’m an attending. But I like it.

I also wanted to write about funny on-call phone calls: though I laugh a bit, I’d rather get a completely unnecessary call and be able to reassure a patient, then get a real call about something serious. I wanted to write about on-call screwups: one more reason to want to drop inpatient coverage.

And it may have been my last inpatient coverage– as we transition to using a hospitalist service. And I’m thankful for that also!

Now, I have to get back to work, and alot of my thoughts will go unblogged… but here is, in a spare bit of time, 10 minutes of random rambling about being on call.


2 thoughts on “10 minutes for random rambling about being on-call.”

  • I commend your desire and ability to have a practice, do hospital work and raise a family. I sometimes feel so overwhelmed and I only have an office practice!! I enjoy your writing and look forward to every post.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.