I started writing this on the Thursday night during my first overnight call. Then, my Friday Five from last week was all about connections and it was nice to reflect in those ways, but I was exhausted and not thinking clearly as I tried to process everything so I wanted to elaborate on some things.
UAB is feeling more and more like a second home to me. I'm oddly comfortable here. My mom spent many months as a patient here, so I spent a lot of time here. I can walk the path from the 4th Avenue parking deck to Spain Rehab without even thinking. In fact, if I'm not careful, I will go right past where I'm supposed to be headed if I let my mind wander because it's like autopilot.
I have been surprised by the number of people I know who are employees here now. It's nice to turn a corner and see a familiar face. And as I spend more time here, more faces are becoming familiar. I'm already starting to build relationships with staff members on the different units, especially the units I cover on a regular basis. It's nice. It's comforting. It's homey.
There are still some times when I am self-conscious about where I am and why I am there. When I walk the back hallways, using my badge to unlock doors that are closed to others or that would otherwise require authorization, I still feel as though I'm doing something I shouldn't be doing, even though I know this isn't the case. It's really not such a different experience from when we first moved into our house, and I felt as though I was somewhere I shouldn't be until everything settled in. It's sort of like breaking in a new pair of shoes. It takes a little while for everything to fit just right, but you can definitely tell when it's starting to happen.
I'm excited about what the coming months will bring. I'm sad that it's now only a little over 11 months until my residency ends. I am already starting to really care about the people with whom I work (and on some level, live) and knowing that this is a temporary thing is not going to make it any easier when I have to leave! A year seems like a long time when you start out, but it really goes very quickly!