Twas the day after Christmas……..

You know, I do love Christmas.  I love all the decor, the music, the feeling you get only this time of year.  But.  You knew the “but” was coming, didn’t you?  When I know I have to work on the holiday, I get into a bit of a slump.  Mentally.  And yes, I was in “the slump” all day yesterday.  It started when my alarm went off at the very rude hour of 4:30am.  I am used to getting up at that horrific hour at least twice a week, but it just seemed particularly awful on Christmas morning.  I did my normal routine, gathered up my stuff, scraped the frost off the car windows, and headed into the darkness to work.  I’ve worked MANY a Christmas Day.  I always hate it.  I hated it all day yesterday.  I drove my typical 1.5 hours into work, looking at the homes as I passed by.  Some still darkened, some already bright with the excitement that only Christmas Day can bring.  Even the 24 hour Wal-Mart was deserted.  The freeway was nearly deserted…. as I trucked along.  Thank goodness I did have a delightful Christmas book I was listening to along the way! (check out my “books read 2009” tab!)  I arrived at work and while some might think that it would be an “easy” day.  It wasn’t.  To offer as many people the day off as possible, the staffing was quite tight.  In other words, I had a full load of patients and they all needed the same care they would get any other day of the year.  We’d planned a Christmas potluck at work, but several of the people who had signed up to bring stuff – got the day off! (lucky dogs)  So the potluck was… well, pitiful.  Thankfully I’d brought a can of soup to heat up, you know, the kind you can put in the microwave?  After my 12-hour shift, I began my drive home, continuing to feel quite sorry for myself all the way (despite the great book I was still listening to).  We had been able to get together with the neighbors before Christmas – which was great.  We’d been able to get together with hubby’s family before Christmas – which again was great.  But I was in the midst of a pity party, wasn’t I?  I was thinking about all MY family that I didn’t get to see.  Didn’t get to see them for Thanksgiving.  Didn’t get to see them for Christmas.  So what did I do?  I drove in the driveway.  Drug my sorry butt into the house, and had a good old fashioned cry on the shoulder of my very patient husband.  People, I am not a “crier”.  But once in a while, a good cry is pretty darned cathartic.  It was for me.  And today, well I can say I did my “duty” this year and will look forward to having the time off work next year!

I really do hope everyone had a great Christmas.  Even the people like myself who had to work on the holiday.   And the pity party.  It’s over.  For a long time, I hope!

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2 thoughts on “Twas the day after Christmas……..

  1. Oh my…. I’m so sorry. Though I don’t work on Christmas, Tom has had to work a ton of them, all 12-hour shifts like yours, and only recently did I stop struggling with that and just accept it–only took me around 25 years to do that. sigh…. But anyway, just wanted to say I do understand in a way that only those of us affected by working on Christmas can understand. I’ve tried to explain how it feels to others over the years, but just gave up. They always have all this advice, but they don’t know about the (ok, irrational) feeling of “All the world is celebrating Christmas today with family, friends, food and gifts….. everybody except for me, of course!”

    Take good care of yourself while you are caring for others…. You deserve all good things! Blessings, Debra

  2. Oh Dear Susan,
    I felt so sorry for you working Xmas day…it is the pits to be sure. This year I worked both Xmas eve and New Year’s eve. So it was fall into bed both nights without any thought of celebration 😦
    But someone gets these shifts and we have next year to look forward to when we may not draw the short straw. Have a great New year and all the very best for 2010…..Love and hugs GendaXXXXXXX

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