Whenever this happens, I always worry it will never end because it's so soul-sucking. But in a mere 5 days I'll have a day off and get to run around in the sunshine.
I thought I might share some strategies I'm trying to develop for coping - for when this happens to me again or if you find yourself at a time like this.
First, remembering why I'm doing this. I love being an OB-Gyn and when I'm at work, actively helping women, I feel good.
Second, carve out time to move. One of the hardest things about getting home in the dark is that I don't have a great, safe, dark running route from my house. Running is and has been for a long time, the way I de-stress and cope with feeling trapped inside a hospital all day. I may just buy some pepper spray and run laps on the main road. I'm getting a bit desperate. But I've also started doing some yoga podcasts in my call room, which helps.
Third, feel the breeze, look at the outside, even if you can't be there. I try to find windows and open them whenever possible. It reduces the feeling that there is no changing of time. Especially these days when everything is so pretty!
Fourth, eat well. Nothing like feeling trapped and I'll. I'm not always the best at this, but I try even harder when I'm in one of these long stretches of work to make sure I'm getting enough fruit, veggies, protein, and water. Water is huge.
Fifth and finally, remember that it won't last forever. The body (and mind) are pretty resilient and can recover from a short hard stint like this. I'm dreaming of my long run next Saturday followed by a spa day to celebrate my sister's upcoming wedding.
In the meantime. I'm hanging out in darkness.