Samantha Scheidler

Submitted 2024-03-16

Take a deep breath, hold for 4 seconds, breathe out for 3. Looking around my vehicle and find the following necessities: stethoscope, badge, lucky pen. Step by step, I walked into the large well-lit building ahead of me. My brain goes a mile a minute memorizing all safe practices and procedures for patients should they be critical during my shift.

In passing, there were a few waves and quiet hellos, all from fellow nurses who had worked the previous shift. Exhaustion over their eyes, they’re doing their best to make it through the next few minutes before shift change.

The familiar smell of the Critical Care Unit reaches my nose as I move closer to the report room. My eyes quickly scan the area to see if there’s anything outside normal and that the crash cart is where it should be.

A report is given on the previous shift, and it is clear which patients are stable vs those that may need more attention. Based on the staff I’m working with, I choose to take the more critical patients. At this time, I review charts, allergies, and pertinent data for the patient before arriving at the floor because I know that once I hit the floor it’s go time.

A few more slight smiles and hellos as I walked up to the nurses’ station, defeat met the eyes of my fellow day shift staff. A deep breath in and out, and I’m ready for the shift.