Midwife Mondays 73: Back on the Postnatal Ward

So, this week has seen the start of another placement block – and this time I was back on the postnatal ward.

I had two shifts this week, which was quite gentle start back to get to grips with how it all works down there again.

My last placement on the postnatal ward was not my favourite, and so I’m going into this new placement determined to change my opinion and make the most of it – after all, this will be my last placement on postnatal until I am a qualified midwife! Eek!

My first shift back was a day shift, and frankly it was a bit of a baptism of fire. I went back in feeling determined and positive, but as soon as I got in I discovered that the midwife I was meant to be working with had changed her shift, and the unit was so short staffed that I barely had a mentor all day to work with.
It was so busy, it was stressful, the unit was fun to bursting, and all my positivity that I had started my day with had melted into a little puddle at the door.
I hate to be negative on here, but it really wasn’t the positive start I had been hoping for – and I always said I’d be honest on here.

10 hours and 45 mins into my 12.5 hour shift, I was right at the point where I thought my brain might explode and a woman asked me to come and help her daughter into a wheelchair – so I headed over and started to help her, at which point she fainted. One emergency buzzer and a very anxious 5 minutes later, all was fine – but it was just the cherry on the top of the day for me.
I headed home to M who had a hot dinner on the table for me when I walked in the door and Silent Witness ready to play on the tv – I’m a seriously lucky girl – even the worst day seems so much better with a hot dinner and a proper cuddle from a handsome man at the end of the day!

I also had a night shift this week, which, again, was absolutely rammed, short staffed, and seriously hard work.
I understand that as I’m in second year now, it is natural for me to be given a bit more responsibility, but these past two shifts, the responsibility I’ve been given hasn’t been due to ability, it has been due to being so short staffed that me taking on more responsibility was the only option. I’m quite confident with my practise, but these two shifts haven’t felt very secure or educational…it’s been a tough start back.

I’m hoping that as I get to meet my actual placement mentor this week, this week will be better. Really hoping. Otherwise, two back-to-back nights is gonna be really really tough!

p.s. I’m trying to document some more of what I’m doing (obviously still maintaining confidentiality etc) over on my instagram stories, so check them out at www.instagram.com/rosieladkin

Image by Amanda Jones

To read last week’s Midwife Mondays post, click here:


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