Trau·ma  Junk· ie  ( 'trau-m&  'j&[ng]-kE) n. Slang
  1. One who has an insatiable interest, devotion or addiction to responding and assisting people with serious injury or shock to the body, as from violence or an accident.

Finding the Balance

My friends, and humble readers, I'm having a problem.

What do you do when the ER goes from this...

...to this?

What do you do at the end of your shift, after you've spent the day doing nothing but working codes, treating chest pains, and applying oxygen to people who don't respond to it? When it's time to go home and relax and all you can do is thinking about treating patients and helping them get better?

I'm having a hard time dealing with something, and I'm not sure if the problem is separating work from home, or something simpler.

Recently, I've started following a lot of EMT blogs, and paying more attention to blogs of ER nurses, ER physicians, and the like. I'm starting to realize that a lot of us face common problems in this line of work, and that often we can help each other out. Just as we care about our patients, we care about each other...we're in this together.

So what do you do? Do you listen to hard rock music on the way home to keep the rush going a little longer? Do you mellow out, take deep breaths, and try to relax? Perhaps play a little classical music?

Do you do things on your day off to get your adrenaline going? Extreme sports? Or simply take pleasure in the simple things in order to find a balance between the stress of working in emergency medicine and trying to live a normal life outside of work?

I'm asking what works for you. I love trauma, I love emergency med, and I love nothing more than working a code (besides my family, friends, daughter, and significant other). Once the rush starts at the beginning of a shift/clinical, I never want it to end, but I know it always does.

Help me find a common ground. And thank you.

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