An illustrated guide to a nurse’s day off
There’s nothing like a full and satisfying day off.
So, what does “full and satisfying” look like for an overworked, under-rested nurse? Below, Kati Kleber offers her own take on a solid stint out in the “real” world, where dinner happens somewhere between 6 and 9 p.m., not a.m.:
Here’s a personal guide to those precious, precious hours away from the hospital.
1. Sanitize: Two to four scalding hot showers should do it.
2. Sleep: Nine to 11 hours will be sufficient. Keep in mind that the first two to three hours will be haunted by telemetry monitor alarms and IV pumps.
3. Coff-eine administration: This is necessary to fully awaken from a deep, deep slumber. There is a standing order for 16 oz. PO coffee; may administer another dose if ineffective after 30 minutes. Do not exceed 900 oz. in 24 hours.
4. Devotionalize: When “just another day at work” can consist of people dying, it’s important to refocus on God. Being humbled and thankful for Him on a daily basis helps you to keep your priorities straight, maintains sanity and keeps you from constantly wearing grumpy pants. No one wants to be around that. Take off your grumpy pants and thank the Lord that you aren’t in that bed.
5. Laundry: Remember all those gross things you did at work? Are you picturing them? Are you picturing emptying that JP drain with all those clots in it? Are you picturing pulling out that chest tube and it almost splattering all over your arm? Wash your clothes, like, now.
When I have to touch my scrubs again to put them into the wash:
6. Nap: Aren’t you tired again yet?
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Kati Kleber BSN, RN CCRN is a a nationally certified critical care nurse located in Charlotte, NC. She is the Nurse Advisor and Editorial Director of the #ProtectNurses initiative, and will be guiding the content we curate, create, and share back with you. Kleber, aka Nurse Eyeroll, is a popular blogger, the voice behind the wildly successful #ProTips series, and a frequent speaker on nursing leadership. You can buy her book "Becoming Nursey" at nurseeyeroll.com, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other sites. She also has two more books in the works, which will be published by the American Nurses Association and on shelves Feb. 2016!
By Kati Kleber BSN, RN