By a small twist of blessing from the Almighty, I'm sitting comfortably on the bed right now, having just finished my mug of green tea, composing my second blog post of the day (is this some kind of a record? haha). The past two weeks have been a major eye-opener for yours truly, a complete starter kit of experience on life's greater picture awaiting me in the near future.
I have gone through ten days of 'tagging' so far, which means I come to work before 7am and finish officially at 10pm (but my average is 11.30pm, the latest being 2.30am!), with unofficial breaks for prayers and meals in between accordingly. Tagging serves as a period of time to familiarise yourself with your workplace- how the whole system operates, how to fill in the plethora of forms, how to manage the ward, what is expected from you, etc., etc. In medical department, the usual length is 14 days, which means I have four more days to go before being slotted into the shift roster like other more seasoned housemen.
Morning shifts here start from about 7am (official time is 8am, but housemen always arrive earlier to review the patients before the medical officers come) and finish at 5pm (though I've never seen anyone in my ward going back at 5. haha. earliest would be 6). Nights shifts begin at 4pm, where the overlapping one hour serves as the 'passover'- for the night-shift houseman to be briefed about that day's patients- and finish at 10am (again, nobody goes back at 10am. usually 12pm).
My worry for now is to handle the night shifts- during the day we have like 5-6 housemen to manage the ward, at night there will be only one of us to take care of the entire ward. Of course, there'll be the medical officer on call, but they won't be in the ward all the time, as their responsibility is even greater- 3-4 wards (or more, I'm not sure) altogether. So you don't want to piss your MO off by calling them every half an hour for something they will deem as trivial. And if you get the really nasty ones, they'll tell you straightaway not to disturb them before morning comes (one of my senior HO was told exactly this during her first night shift).
The first five days of work was simply indescribable. I have never been so... 'blur' in my entire life! The whole place was chaotic and everybody was just rushing here and there to keep the old rusty ward from falling apart and the MO in charge of HOs was on leave so I didn't get a proper orientation and was just told to ask anything if I didn't understand. It meant bugging people every five seconds so in the end, I tried to figure some of the things out by myself, which took a whole lot longer than it normally would. I was moving at a humiliatingly slower pace than the snail which was so against my nature and it terribly frustrated me. The others were well into their housemanship and have become so competent and I felt like I was thousands of light years behind them. It was not a good time for me, and I knew the feeling had escalated to an alarming level when I walked past a ward cleaner once and seriously thought of switching jobs with her.
Luckily I've got a home to return to, and even if I don't, I know I have Allah to turn to. I kept telling myself that everybody went through the same phase, and it would all come to pass. Slowly, I got the hang of the basics and things got better. Then, the heavy and lengthy working hours kicked in. Working for almost ten days straight without break was taking its toll on my body; dinner at midnight had become a routine (I even fell asleep whilst eating once -.-), and I just didn't have the time to study after finishing work. I got all stressed out again, and even shed tears after talking to my mum at work, right in the middle of the ward. haha.
But Allah is Ar-Rahman, Ar-Rahim... Al-Mujib... He has promised in the Quran,
"Verily, with every difficulty there is relief." (Al-Inshirah: 6)
The next morning on Friday, as I was reviewing one of the patients with my MO, he asked me how long I have been tagging, and then told me to take the weekend off. Take the weekend off! I almost couldn't believe my ears. Thank God I had my mask on so he couldn't see the stupid grin plastered all over my face.
So that explains how I get to write two happy posts in one day. :D Tomorrow I'll be going back to work, but inshaallah with much better spirits and perspective. Please pray for Allah to ease me and all of us in everything we do. :)
ps: Today, 4 Sha'ban 1433, is my birthday! ^_^