3.21.2013

Surviving another week of night float

Night float is not my favorite thing.  I don't know any med wife that enjoys it.  You see your husband in passing for maybe 10 minutes a day, all of which he is groggy and completely out of it.  All he cares about is going to bed or getting coffee.  You sleep alone every night after checking that the door is locked three times.  It's not enjoyable.  

The past week (from Monday to Monday), my husband was at the hospital/in lecture for 98 hours.  That week was made up of night float Monday night through Friday morning (6p-8a), four hours of lecture on Wednesday (1p-5p), a 27-hour weekend call shift (6a Sat - 9a Sun), and a regular shift (5a-5p) on Monday.  Oh, the joys of surgery. 

That Wednesday lecture meant that my husband planned on going into the hospital at 6pm on Tuesday for night float, sleeping in a call room after his shift was over on Wednesday morning for four hours, attending lecture, then starting his Wednesday night shift at 6pm, and finally being home Thursday morning after 8am.  

Remember how I sometimes overpack my husband's lunch cooler, because food is my love language?  Here's what he took in for his 38 hours at the hospital/school.

Asian pork & noodles, red beans & rice with asparagus, beef stew, baked oatmeal, a breakfast burrito, yogurt and granola, melon & grapes, an orange, a banana, a protein bar and some powdered caffeine.  

But when his resident heard that he had to be back at 1pm, he kindly sent my husband home at 6am after he was done rounding on Wednesday morning to sleep in a real bed.  So what came home with him? The red beans & rice with asparagus, the beef stew, the yogurt and granola, the orange, the banana and the powdered caffeine.  Ha!

In other night float news, a recent change to our bedroom decor has helped my husband sleep better during daylight hours.  Normally, I chuck blankets haphazardly over the curtain rods to make it darker in our bedroom for his daytime sleepingBut, in an effort to reduce some of the heat lost out our windows this winter, I added some simple flannel panels to our bedroom windows.

I attached them with sew-on velcro to the flannel, and sticky-back velcro to the frame, which is mildly ghetto, but it's okay.  No one sees. 

Here's the difference it makes in the brightness of our bedroom:



Yeah.  It's pretty much pitch black in there, no matter the time.  It rocks.  

So now, just one more Friday night call shift (from 6p-8a, after a regular day), and a Sunday day call shift (6a-9p) stand in the way of us being done with nights/call for THE YEAR, as there aren't any call shifts on family medicine, the next & final rotation of my husband's third year.  

Now THAT is something to anticipate!   

16 comments:

  1. Flannel, what a great idea! And velco - it must be the new duct tape.

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    1. Gotta love the velcro! :) If you're buying flannel at somewhere like Joann's, make sure to buy it on sale - it'll be 60% off next weekend (at least in the Mitten State!).

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  2. What rotation was this for? I really need the thicker curtains for our bedroom and to get more Tupperware for him to bring on rotations. A third year med student shopping list is now in progress :)

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    1. This is the oh-so-lovely surgery rotation. I can probably think of more things to add to your shopping list ;)

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  3. I've just had to deal with the same thing, having an Emergency Department doctor stay at my house for a few weeks. I'm going to try the same thing- what a great idea. It'll save me from calling a handy man to put up the new curtains.

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  4. You're hubby is spoiled with his lunches. I think I've packed lunch for mine twice ;/ (But he typically eats in the cafeteria because it's easier).
    Light blocking blinds are definitely a must for a doc!

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    1. Let's be honest - as soon as he's a resident/gets a cafeteria allowance, his lunches will probably dwindle. The money saving aspect is one of the main reasons I pack them....and because I have a suspicion that he would choose pizza & chili fries for every meal!

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  5. Ahh I am absolutely dreading night float, I do not like being home alone!

    Just nominated you for the Liebster- here's my link!

    http://marriedtomed.blogspot.com/2013/03/liebster-award-nomination.html

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  6. You will LOVE, and NEED, that flannel window trick when your sweet baby comes!! Quite seriously!

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    1. Luckily the curtains in our office/guest room/nursery are awesome black out curtains. But we'll probably have the flannel in place whilst baby sleeps in the bassinet!

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  7. Yay for improved schedule! That seems to be the forever thing with med school/residency - some rotation schedules are no fun, and then thankfully a better one comes eventually :) And I feel you on night float - it's generally not more work hours than a regular rotation, but somehow I see Peter way less. That sleep schedule messes him up!

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    1. We are SO looking forward to family medicine!!

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  8. That flannel window cover is such a great idea! My hubby is on night float right now too and I've been thinking I needed to find a way to make our bedroom darker for him during the day!

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    1. Totally recommend it...even if it is mildly ghetto ;)

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