I’ve been a night shift nurse for the past six years. A month ago I accepted a new position at St Vincent Hospital, which means that, after this week I will be working during the day! There are people at my old unit that I will miss, and people that I won’t miss. There are things about my job that will change because I will be working during the day instead of the night, but I hope it’s a change for the better.
I will still need to work overtime to make our budget, but the main advantage of working day shift versus night shift is that I will not need time to recover from working overnight. Let me give you an example:
If I work nights Monday through Wednesday, that means I get off work around 8am Thursday morning. Then I have to spend the rest of the day switching over to a “being awake during the day” schedule. So I only work three days, but I’m out of commission for four days.
I know that I will be making less money on day shift (about $4 per hour less), but the difference can be made up by working that extra day instead of killing my body by trying to stay awake at night and sleeping during the day. I have worked night shift for six years now, and I am ready to move on. What a relief it will be to sleep in my own bed every night (instead of during the day). What a relief to not have to try to attend different events (like church, kids events, etc) while exhausted.
My last day at my old job is this Thursday, and they are having a “pitch-in” for me (to you Iowa people, this is what they call a “potluck” here in Indiana). I plan to still pick up overtime wherever I can get it, and this may mean that I will be working on my “old unit” in the future, but not in the near future. We are praying that this job change is going to be good for our family.