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May 4, 2008

i can’t believe i’m back on call tomorrow. i’m actually going back to the same ward team i was on just 5 weeks ago — and yet to me it feels like i haven’t answered a page in forever. and i am pleased to announce that in seven call cycles (a mere 28 days from tomorrow, but who’s counting?), i will no longer be ward intern, EVER, AGAIN.

(i still have to serve 4 weeks in the full term nursery, but this involves no call and no senior, so the ‘intern’ aspect of it all is minimal.)

i guess i’m ready to re-enter the trenches. i was getting tired of doing rapid streps and undergoing body-slamming wrestling matches with babies for ‘just a quick look’ in their ears. i’m not ready for the incessant whine of the pager, but it will be comforting to think that someone ELSE will have to deal with the calls in just a few short weeks.

* * * * * * *

and speaking of violence and pain, my trainer* kicked my butt yesterday. i am marathon-level sore today. definitely more than ‘routine 20-miler’-sore. the good part is that i learned a lot of great free-weights exercises (umpteen variations on lunges and squats, especially!), but the bad is that i doubt i could ever push myself this hard on my own. i am doing pretty well with more varied workouts and a gradual return to some running. there is still a tiny bit of hip pain – but it really is tiny and has not escalated at all. this week’s balance was composed of:

– 2 weights sessions
– 1 elliptical session
– 1 spin class
– 3 easy 30 minute runs with walking segments**

* * * * * * *

goals for my LAST intern ward month

• remain calm and confident. this is my fifth ward month! if there ever was a time that i was well-trained and almost over-prepared to take the intern role, it is now. getting overwhelmed and freaked out is so july ’07.

• spend more time updating parents. i feel like this often gets left out because of anxiety about other details. but it is one of the most important aspects of my job, and when parents are in the loop, they might not ask the nurse to page you at 3 am for an ‘update’ because they couldn’t sleep. everyone wins!

• read about patients’ issues on a daily basis. even just 10 extra minutes spent thinking about a problem can be worth it.

• spend time teaching and encouraging the med students — after all in just 4 months i will be ward senior and that will be one of my primary jobs.

• plan ahead and keep up with the ‘rest of life’ stuff to the best of my abilities — workouts, packing good lunches and planning easy dinners, and keeping the apartment under control. it seems so dorky, but having these things set just makes me feel better about working so many hours.

* * * * * * *

* unfortunately i cannot afford a trainer all the time, but i bought 3 sessions when i joined my gym. definitely worth it to help me rebuild a routine!

** as prescribed by pfitzinger in his ‘returning from injury’ program (link here). i used this program when rehabbing from my achilles tendonitis, and it worked well so i’m going with it again. mostly because it forces me not to immediately restart 40 mile weeks. and that is good.

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