Thursday, April 3, 2008


Life is about to slow down................THE SEASON IS ALMOST OVER!

THE SEASON---when the tourists and snowbirds all flock down to the Keys in search of sunshine and some respite from the cold and snow.  The roads in town are full, the bars are packed, the ER is seeing record numbers of patients, the census at the hospital is full. ICU has been packed the last couple of weeks. We're all working overtime........and now, finally, we're starting to see relief.

The last 2 nights in the ER have been eerily slow. We've had beds for everybody, no holds overnight. People still straggle in, but usually the board is empty by the time the 7AM'ers roll in.

As the weather gets warmer, and the days get longer, people start packing up to go home. I've started to see several houses on my island with their hurricane shutters up. When we got here in August, the island was a ghost town. More unoccupied homes than those in use. We'd have zero traffic in the canal on the way out to the ocean. The pace was definitely slower (I'm sure the heat had to do something with that!).

As the demand wanes, I start to slow down too. No more OVERTIME. I work my three shifts and that is that. 4 days off a week, and if I play my cards right, I get them back to back with the 4 days off the next week. Stack the schedule and you have plenty of time to play

Things to do while I'm off:

1.  Get a tan.

2.  Start doing some exercise (can't put it off any longer)

3.  Start thinking about my school options. If I'm going to be stuck here for awhile, I may as well start working towards that advanced degree.

4.   Start thinking about finding a permanent residence here. Find a place where we can be more comfortable, and find some common ground in distance. Right now I commute 23 miles. Danny commutes 22 miles, but he works 5 days a week and I only work 3. With gas so expensive, we need to live MUCH closer to one job. Figuring out which one is the issue.

5.   Stop looking at the travel assignment postings. It only makes me wishful of the places I COULD BE. This is where I AM. Get used to it.

6.    Get a tan.

I have to admit, but in spite of the fact that I took this job temporarily because they didn't have any openings in the PACU, I'm enjoying it quite nicely, thank you. The hospital, for all its little quirks, has been a good fit. It's small enough where you know everybody and can move gracefully from unit to unit and get things done.  Although I do admit I miss the brain crunch from doing really acute critical care, I realize that I haven't lost my skills. I just don't use them on a daily basis anymore. At the same time, throw me what you've got. I can DO IT!!! This might be the perfect opportunity to not be mentally exhausted all the time and attempt to get a little schooling done while I work. And work on my tan.

So there. Maybe for the first time since I got here, I'm not whining about wanting to go home. Because if life teaches you anything important, its this: HOME IS WHERE YOUR PEOPLE ARE.

1 comment:

Nurse Practitioners Save Lives said...

I totally agree with your comment about home is where your people are.
While I love the beach, the mountains always call my soul. Strange because I have never lived there, just visited once in NC. My husband loves to go to the beach but we are not beach bunnies ( I burn too easily). We love walking in the late afternoons collecting shells but we live 1 1/2 away from the coast. I watch the travel channel and dream of places to visit but somehow know that I will never get there. I try not to aggravate myself too often. Hope you enjoy the Keys a little more each day.