This morning I went to work earlier than usual and when I was parking up, I saw some weary nurses scraping the ice off their cars after finishing the night shift. My heart went out to them. It’s always a pain waking up in the mornings to an iced-up car but imagine having to face it after a hectic ten hour shift on a busy hospital ward.
I remember it well. I hated the night shifts. In Winter, the mornings would be dark and freezing cold and we would wearily scrape our cars and long for our warm beds. And the Summers weren’t much easier to cope with. It was just so frustrating. We were desperately tired but it was hard going to bed, not only because we were acutely aware that we were losing out on such lovely days but it was difficult to get a decent period of sleep because the days were so bright. Eye masks and ear plugs were available but the eye masks would never stay in place and I was always reluctant to use the ear plugs for chance there was an emergency and I slept right through it.
So, here’s to the night nurse and all the other public sector workers who stay up all night to protect and take care of us.