Monday, December 16, 2013

A Day in the Life of a Busy Mom, Nurse & Student


I shared a little about my friend, Brooke, and her efforts to further her career in nursing through continued education.  Now, I'm going to share a day in the life of Brooke and what it takes to parent two girls, work the night shift and still make it to yoga, a Boston Red Sox game, a Garth Brooks concert in Vegas and a muddy Tough Mudder Race.  This woman does it all!
From Brooke: “I work nights in a busy Level II trauma center. My role as a resource/charge nurse keeps me busy throughout my shift as I am in charge of the entire department during my shift. The doctors come to me with frustrations with nursing, with CT and XR delays and other floors in the hospital call me with every complaint or issue with admitted patients. My 7pm shift starts with getting reports on all of the patients in the department. We have 27 adult beds, 4 beds in the pediatric ED and 4 acute psychiatric beds. If we are short staffed, I have to make adjustments in the department to close those beds or make phone calls to try to get staff to come in.  Worst case scenario, I take an assignment.  At 1am we start covering each other for breaks, and by 3am, I lose 16 beds and 4 staff members. We run on a skeleton crew of 1 doctor and 4 nurses from 3am-7am. If a trauma or cardiac arrest comes in, we stretch ourselves to cover all of the patients and do our best to get through the crisis. It's heavily teamwork oriented. 
During my break, I typically hide away in my office and do some of my reading for school or log onto the website and read postings on the message boards. We have one topic a week that we must respond to, as well as follow the discussion and respond to 3 class members. Our responses must include a reference and offer an opinion or fact that keeps the discussion moving along. We must log in 4 days a week and respond to class mates. I do my best to do this during my break, but it doesn't always happen like I want it to happen. 
At 7am, I give report to the oncoming charge nurse and head over to the gym. I usually get to the gym by 8am and slide last minute into one of the spinning or group classes. Yoga is my favorite as it is relaxing and gets my mind settled from the night. After class, it's time to head home and get to bed. Typically, I am able to sleep from 10am- 4pm when the girls get home from school.  I get up, hop in the shower and attempt to spend some time with the girls; helping with homework, cleaning the house or making dinner. It's only a few hours and that time is precious to me. I would love to say that I sit down for dinner with them every night but there are some nights they are eating at the bar at the kitchen counter while I make my dinner for the night or load the dishwasher. I try to use this time to catch up on what is going on with school and their friends. 
I leave for work at 6:30 pm and start it all over again. My job is nice in that I only work 3-4 nights a week, but like every hospital, we are short staffed and there is a shortage. Opportunities for over time and phone calls asking for help are almost a daily occurrence and it's hard to set limits at times, but the girls keep me grounded and their assortment of activities and sports always give me a good reason to say no. I find that any more than 3 nights in a row I am worthless. I am tired, cranky and everyone around me pays the price.   My career has made me value each area of my life a little more- my time with my girls, my time for myself and my time helping others.  It is demanding, challenging, thrilling and exhausting and I feel like I am exactly where I am supposed to be.”
I smile when I read a Facebook post from Brooke saying that their department kicked butt last night and how she loves the team she works with and the work she does is propelling her into her true love; pediatrics.  Do you feel fulfilled in your career?  It's never too late to change your direction and Kaplan University can help.  Check out their programs in Nursing, Education, IT & Business.
Whether you’re seeking further success in your current role or a new opportunity, Kaplan University can help you prepare for the exciting possibilities ahead.*
As an accredited university built on 75 years of experience,† Kaplan University offers a wide range of career-focused programs designed to develop the skills and knowledge leading employers seek. Our mission: to offer you the most direct educational path to achieve your goals.

Whether you’re seeking further success in your current role or a new opportunity, Kaplan University can help you prepare for the exciting possibilities ahead.*

As an accredited university built on more than 75 years of experience,† Kaplan University offers a wide range of career-focused programs designed to develop the skills and knowledge leading employers seek. Our focus: to offer you the most direct educational path to achieve your goals.

Are you ready for a change?  Learn more at kaplanuniversity.edu

* Kaplan University cannot guarantee employment or career advancement.

† Kaplan University is regionally accredited. Please visit http://www.kaplanuniversity.edu/about/accreditation-licensing.aspx# for additional information about institutional and programmatic accreditation.

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