And despite how busy it was this past month, it didn’t change one bit how I feel about this job. Judging by a few comments advising me to change fields, perhaps that hasn’t been coming across in my posting, but really, this past month has been pretty awesome. Sure there were some obnoxious patients, ones that want to make you pull your hair out (and yes, even fantasize about doing them bodily harm), but there were also plenty of kind, thoughtful patients and family members, ones that inspire you to work hard, put a smile on your face and drive you to do your best for them, both as patients and people. There was actually many times where I felt bordeline high at work, the dopamine and serotonin being released in my brain from some of these experiences was at very high levels indeed. And it wasn’t just from doing sexy adrenaline like procedure stuff either, it was from doing basic things, making a patient with the flu feel better with some fluids and tylenol, explaining to a family what was going on, helping them understand their loved one’s illness, being thanked for doing nothing more than listening.
The hospital I am working at now, is about an hour commute from where our program is centered, but I used to live out by this hospital for 4 years during medical school, so I know many of the surrounding communities, and the people that live in them. I was caring for this patient and family who actually resided a street over from where I lived. I had never met them before, but there was that natural comradeship of people sharing a geographical location. The cue for inpatient beds was hours long, so they had spent my entire shift in the ED, waiting for one, so I would check in on them every hour or so, just to make sure everyone was alright and what not. At one point we had talked about the neighborhood, and I had mentioned how I loved the hoagies from the place that was at the end of the block. Towards the end of my 12 hours shift, the nurse came over and handed me a hoagie, from my favorite place, saying it was from the family in bed 12. Totally awesome. Made my day.