Ana Ayana – I am tired.
This is why.
Ten hour shift in A&E turned into a twelve hour shift.
12 hours of standing on my feet and chasing patients who don’t want to me to look after them.
3 hours of chasing a patient around the hospital, trying to get him to take his meds and persuade him not to go outside for a cigarette because he can barely breath and his oxygen levels are low.
3 hours of being abused by said patient for trying to stop him from getting so hypoxic and hypercapnic that he needs ITU. He was young but his judgement was so off, it was questionable if he had intact capacity. His hypercapnia (retaining carbon dioxide) was just over normal so I wasn’t thinking confusion at this stage.
2.5 hours over the time when I should have left to go home so that I could rest up ahead of my shift tomorrow morning.
But then I turned to the sister in charge and she saved the day. All is well. The patient is safe for now. Until he tries to get out of the ward again for another fag.
A long time since I have had such abuse for doing my job or experienced such disdain for my presence by a patient. In fact I think today was a first.
It was bizarre this morning – I bought a packet of chewing gum to get some change for the hospital car park but at the time had dismissed ever even opening the packet as it’s Ramadan and I am fasting. I had put them in my scrubs top pocket and forgotten about them. It was only as I was walking to my car, realising that the sun was setting and the fast was breaking did I realise that the small rectangular thing I was touching in my pocket was the packet of gum I thought I would never need. I thought to myself in that moment of fatigue and thankfulness that God knows the plan ahead of us, better than we do. I used the gum to break my fast as I had nothing else on me. I was not expecting to be so late getting home.
I had to go an sit in a coffee shop to decompress my brain before going home.
Home now and kind of floored. At least I know that I can fast a full day, be on my feet for most of it and deal with challenging patients – I have more of it for the rest of Ramadhan so it’s kind of confidence building.