The post-it reads “call is my hobby”.
Judging by the handwriting on the post-it, I would say this was written in 2020. Long before there was a call only position at the hospital.
This is the nearly one year anniversary of this gig.
And I love it.
Can I say that, and not tempt fate? Or the red pen in the budgetary process?
I think this is a service to the department and to our coworkers. No one likes call (except me, the PACU call nurse, and the call scrub tech, and the call ENDO nurse), the four of us have done the bulk of the call for the last year. Except for the odd vacation, or holidays, or random days off.
I know that this was started in an effort to attract and retain nurses/techs from going to where there is no call, or the ambulatory surgery centers. Well, I think that was the reason the call position was started. No one has ever came out and told me this was the case.
According to the master list of Dispatches from the Evening Shift posts, yesterday would have been the last day of my old life. The one where I worked entirely too many hours, all the hours that were actually, and took all the call. And did weekly meetings for various committees.
In truth, I had been feeling a bit stale, and a bit put upon by my own coworkers. They just expected me to be able to take ALL the call, sometimes toward the end without asking. I was also feeling hemmed in by changes in the department, changes that I didn’t necessarily buy into. Frankly, it was the call job, or leave the hospital.
And call is my favorite.
And if this ride were to end, I have plans of what to do next. Ideally, it would not end until I have graduated with my PhD. But I don’t know that. I would chose a sister hospital in the system to work for. And find a position that allows me the greatest amount of time for schoolwork. Because positions are still open and departments are begging for staff, especially in those hard to fill shifts. I don’t want to, but I could.
Really, why would it? There is still a nursing shortage. And us call people are the most stable of them all. And the least whiny.
Since beginning the call job, I applied to and was accepted at a state university PhD in nursing program.
I applied to and was accepted to be a writer for a new online publication that will be debuting in February.
I slowed down tremendously in the amount of nurse work that I do. Something had to change in my workaholic ways, and I consciously slowed myself down. Could I have gotten a day shift job somewhere and worked both? Yes, but I knew that would be counter-productive regarding my plans to go back to school.
Call is still my hobby, and my work.
I only wish more people weren’t afraid of it. Perhaps not, it takes a certain personality to do this all the time. I don’t mind the pager, or the unpredictability of case volume.
Call is still my favorite.
And the cats’ favorite too because I am at home more than I ever have been in my working life.
Who knows what the future will bring?
But, I can assure you and myself, that call will be a part of it.