Thursday, July 7, 2016

Growing Pains

Just over a year ago with the fluttering of butterflies batting their wings frantically in my stomach, I walked into the Emergency Room as a physician for a first time. I was excited, afraid, and feeling just a little out of place. 365 challenging days later, I walked into that same Emergency Room as a Second Year resident. An "upper level." My intern days were over and for the first time it would be my responsibility to run the department and try to help out our brand new physicians when I could. I would occasionally be sitting in the "co-captain" chair as Skarda would say for the first time. Our department is split between the "bread and butter" of Emergency Medicine(abdominal pain, headaches, broken bones) and the super sick or traumas of the ER. The Co-captain chair is where the upper level resident running the super sick side of the department sits. Or really just where he/she places their things while they bounce from room to room and run down their to-do list while not sitting.
Day 1 as an upper level gave me the false security that it wasn't going to be bad at all. Followed by day 2-4 where I left each day with unfinished notes, a growling belly, and the ache of exhaustion. The truth is I absolutely love it and I find myself feeling super happy every moment of the day whether at work or not. Everyday is a new challenge and I'm pushing myself to be a better physician with each patient. I enjoy being busy and I enjoy providing a little mentoring to the new medical students and interns in our department. It's a whole new experience and so much more challenging, but I look forward to every moment of it. The exhaustion and all.
After my first 5 shifts as an upper level, I struggled through 3/4 of our morning conference after a night shift before passing out for 12 hours. I have become terrible at answering phone calls and text messages in my frenzy of getting things done and apologize to anyone who I texted back at obscene hours of the morning. With my first stretch of shifts in the books, I am off for a few days which I'll be using to clean house, work on some projects, and settle into some studying. I am planning on getting my dining room table, where I have studied for each and every important exam, set up for daily studying for the next several months. I prefer to eat out on the balcony anyways. I am also planning on relieving my itch to do a little baking that I get from time to time. Seems like the perfect time to make some homemade breads or a cheesecake. And I definitely foresee some of my homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies and Peanut Butter Cookies coming out of the oven and onto the porches of all of my colleagues making it through ICU months right now.
Towards the end of the month, I am going to relieve my itch to go home for just no good reason. Stopping in Branson on the way to see my mom while she is out camping and then making my way towards my hometown that evening to spend the weekend just kicking around. Sometimes I just get the urge to sit around the table and just chat especially with my grandparents.
I may be going through some Growing Pains and exhaustion with my new responsibilities, but life is wonderful and I couldn't be happier.