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Night shift

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I got back to where I belong in the ED.  What I didn’t say is that I am back on night shift.  I’m not complaining, in fact I am extremely happy.   But I have not worked night shifts on a regular schedule for about three years, so I am a bit concerned.

I have hired nurses who were worried about working nights.  I always had advice about how to do it, to get through it and learn how to be a nurse on the night shift.  But when it comes to me, I don’t know if my advice will work.

As all of you who work nights probably remember, the first few months were the worst.  Trying to adjust your body to living what I call the backwards life is tough.  Also, the last time I worked night shift on a regular basis my daughter was a baby, she slept all the time, which meant I slept, it worked out great.  Now I have a big kid, who doesn’t understand how to be quiet when daddy is trying to take a nap, who doesn’t understand why daddy has to sleep during the day when she is up, ready to play.

We will figure it out as a family, plus the night shift differential is a plus!

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Rob Cameron

Rob Cameron is currently a staff nurse in a level II trauma center. He has primarily been an ED nurse for most of his career, but he has also been a nurse manager for Surgical Trauma and Telemetry unit. He has worked in Med/Surg, Critical Care, Hospice, Rehab, an extremely busy cardiology clinic and pretty much anywhere he's been needed. Prior to his career in nursing, Rob worked in healthcare finance and management. Rob feels this experience has given him a perspective on nursing that many never see. He loves nursing because of all the options he has within the field. He is currently a grad student working on an MSN in nursing leadership, and teaches clinicals at a local university. Away from work, Rob spends all of his time with his wife and daughter. He enjoys cycling and Crossfit. He is a die hard NASCAR fan. Sundays you can find Rob watching the race with his daughter.
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3 Responses to Night shift

  1. RN_Allison

    I have worked night shift for the past 12 years. I started working nights as a CNA when I was in nursing school. I could work at night, and go to school during the day. I would sleep in my van in between classes, and a classmate would wake me up just in time. It definitely isn’t for the faint of heart. My suggestion is to be sure you get sleep before your shift. I’ve done just about everything, but taking Benadryl or Tylenol PM’s is the best solution. I also have children that are 17, 13, and 11. You would think they would be used to me working nights, since it has been forever, but no, alas the fighting continues throughout the entire weekend. I try to work during the week so that they are in school and I get at least a few hours of uninterrupted sleep. Good luck on getting used to night shift, I love it, and would never work any other time of day.

  2. Abby Student

    I have always been afraid of working nights. But I need a job and I’m in school. Anyone have any pointers?

  3. rudraniborden RN

    I worked for 5 years in the 80’s, then the next few years day shift in senior care centers as a case manager, plus home health. I was a little younger then and now I am 72yrs old and working with medically fragile children, presently employed with an agency. I work 3 shifts of 10 hours with the same patient with ventilator and total care. I find it the most rewarding nursing i have ever done. I think it is important to have a full life in order to have balance in life to include a strong spiritual life, family and friends who support your life as a night nurse.It is very important to keep fit by eating right, getting enough sleep and sometimes you need more because we are going against our natural clock and it is stressful. I love nights and hope to be able to work as long as I am able to do a good job.Nursing is a very satisfying field and I have periods of time in my life when I wasn’t working and i also retired 5 yrs ago, but somehow I still had more to give so here i am again and loving it. Nancy Borden RN