Mama in the City

A blog about raising my family in downtown Vancouver

The Worst Hour Of The Night: 4 AM, I Detest You

I don't mind that much about having to work night shifts. However, no matter how long I have been working nights (since 2001!) I still get a sense of dread just as I walk out the door on my way to work. Thoughts run through my head like, 'this is going to be a long night' or ' Crap! I am already tired'. By the time I get to the bright busy unit I usually can drop all those feelings off and just get into the pace of the labor and delivery unit.

Since returning back to work this past October I feel like I slid right back into doing night shifts. All 12.25 hours of that long and unpredictably busy night shift. Nothing strains your health and body quite like running around helping babies birth at 4 AM. Even though you are sharing in the birth of a baby, 4 AM will always suck. Tiredness creeps up on you and hits you with full force at 4 AM.

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It turns out that 4 AM is this grey space of time when you work all night. It is not yet the morning but not really night time anymore. It is an hour that, once passes, transfers a night shift into morning and morning means I am almost finished. Somehow the hour of 4 o'clock passes more painfully and slower than any other hour of the night.

Once I push through that tight squeeze of 0400h and I see the 5 shining bright on the hospital wall clock I feel a sense of glee and hope. Almost finished! Time for me to rest and recover and enjoy laying still in the bed sheets. I will be seeing the next two 4 AM's to come.

2 comments:

Sarah said...

I so agree with you! It seems to take forever for the clock to move from 4-5am. I will be thinking of you at that time tonight and tomorrow when I am trying to keep my eyes open upstairs on the 7th floor.

December 12, 2009 at 6:10 PM  
Mama in the City said...

I was sitting in a dark labor room at 4-5 AM. It was semi painful to keep wide awake.

December 13, 2009 at 4:18 PM  

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