Triage is a French word that is used in my profession to determine how care is delivered when resources limit the ability to give that care. Once monthly on weekends, I'm a triage nurse and I'm really new to this position. I trained a mere 16 hours over the past 2 weekends to get here. I get to the office around 6 in the morning, make out assignments for our limited weekend staff, sift through reports that trickle in after 7AM and modify the assignments accordingly. By the time 8AM rolls around, all the work is doled out, all of the nurses and ancillary staff are busy bees and then the phones go live. Really, it's like they take on a life of their own. This weekend I went live and had a partner with me Saturday, but flew solo Sunday. I. Am. Whipped.
In two days time, my email inbox multiplied from 70 emails to 332. You do the math; I'm too tired. The difference represents how many emails I received. I sent about an additional 150 pleas, responses and answers. There was some begging involved. I talked to patients, families, doctors, nurses, supervisors, colleagues, social workers and took one call from my husband. During the few fifteen to thirty minute blocks of time when things weren't ringing, dinging and buzzing, I caught up on charting in two separate programs and updating report. I worked 22 hours out of 48 and am absolutely beat, but I liked it. I like to be busy; I just wish I'd had more time to at least pee, eat, brew coffee, walk around the building once or twice to get my blood flowing and I swear I would have sawed off my left hand for 5 minutes of nobody talking. Silence is undervalued by some.
Today I'm attempting to triage my life and getting nowhere fast. I did take a shower, which I considered a major accomplishment. After work on Saturday night, I put up the Christmas tree, and while at work yesterday, Sara decorated. It's beautiful and I was so grateful to come home to one thing on the to-do list that was done. There was some tree/mouse turd drama...long story...but that's been remedied. I may die of Hanta Virus by the first of the year, but I'm going to take my chances! I love that little Grinch like Christmas tree. What's a little mouse excrement matter anyhow?
It's foggy and humid here in Detroit. It's a perfect day to set triaging aside, put my feet up, sip tea and knit. I can always start the to-do list tomorrow.