How do you switch off after a stressful day in the hospital?
After a long shift at work (and a bit of a commute) I find blasting some loud music out in the car and having a sing-a-long really helps. When I get home, I'll often unload all of the days issues on the hubby - which I'm sure he loves! Since lockdown, and the pressures of being a frontline key worker during a pandemic, I've really focussed on making sure I have some time to myself - whether that is going for run or doing a workout in the garden, or a bit of a lie-in with my toddler on my days off.
What top tips have you got for other fellow nurses/mums/women for keeping a cool head in the crisis?
I'm fairly sure that my work colleagues wouldn't recognise the frazzled mum-of-a-two-year-old I turn into on my days off....but at work, my motto is "If I'm panicking, you can panic" - I've trained for 10 years to be at the top of my Neonatal Nursing game, so it takes a lot to rock my confidence - self-belief has been the turning point in my career. I try and remind myself that I'm not alone with a worry or an issue, and its important for me to have friends who I can swap stories of toddlers climbing on the garage roof (mine!) or toddlers trying to murder their siblings (theirs!).
Favourite lockdown tune/playlist?
With upping my running (mostly so I can escape mum-duty, wife-duty or daughter-duty!) since lockdown began, I've been hammering the BBC Sounds app - the Radio one Anthems Playlists are my go to - the R'n'B one throws me back to underage club nights with my pals.
Given your hectic job and long shifts, what are your top asks from your go to underwear?
I've got to feel supported and comfortable, "granny" pants are the style for me...Scrubs can often be ill-fitting so the worry that they'll slip down and expose your derriere to my colleagues is an ongoing concern. Bra wise - although I like a comfortable style, anything with lace that feels feminine and sexes up the otherwise boring nurses uniform. I'm fairly confident that the image of a sexed-up nurse didn't come from the husband of one - he puts up with my swollen night-shift cankles, grumpy moods when I'm working shifts, and the constant juggling of childcare.
In ten years time how would you hope to look back on this time?
It's been a really strange time for me and my family - luckily my husband, little boy and I moved in with my parents in October whilst we were waiting for a house purchase to go through, so we've been able to socially distance ourselves with the people who love us the most. I've really tried to spend this time not taking that for granted, watching my little boy with his grandparents has been priceless and something that I will remember forever.
Unfortunately, we lost my Grandad to Covid-19, and that felt particularly brutal, especially then having to come into work and face the music from a professional standpoint.
We've streamlined out spending and have realised that we don't need those "luxuries" we thought we couldn't live without....so I hope that continues! I'll also never forget the constant cheerleading from my friends who don't work within healthcare, but have tried to understand what kind of pressure I've been under. Zoom quizzes and book clubs for the win!!