Monday, March 17, 2008

The Midnight Shift, How Do I Hate Thee?

Let me count the ways:

1. I don't get enough sleep. Let's assume I am starting my week on Monday night at 11PM. Usually I will get up with the kids at 6:30AM that morning to get them off to school. I'll try to nap, I may get in a couple hours, then I have to pick them up, we'll have dinner when my wife comes home, we get them to bed, then I get ready to go to work. I won't get to bed until about 8AM the next morning, so I'm up about 26 hours with a (possible) two hour nap. And I only get about 6 or 7 hours of sleep for the rest of the week so I never catch up.

2. My body clock gets all messed up. Since I don't work the midnight shift often it's hard to get into a rhythm. My body wants to sleep when I'm at work, the drive home is not pretty, and when I go to sleep I wake up a lot to due to the call of nature. By the time the week is up I have gotten into a rhythm, but that means my first day off I am dragging my butt all day long. I get used to sleeping during the daylight; I've turned into a vampire.

3. I'm cranky. Go ask my wife. She'll tell you. It's do to the "fog of midnights", that's what I call it at least.

4. I can't do anything during the day. During the summer I miss out on a lot of great weather. It always seems the nicest days are when I'm on midnights. I haven't missed too much in the way of family events. My wife is good about planning them away from my midnight shifts. She looks out for me.

5. Marching band practice. We live about 500 yards from the high school. During the fall marching band practice starts up. Not good. I don't usually hear it if I'm asleep, but if I wake up for some reason (see number 2) It is hard to go back to sleep with the drums pounding.

So, is there anything good about midnights? The building is empty. It is only our group in the whole building overnight. Very little management, no executives at all, that's nice. It's a lot easier to park close to the building. That's about it. Oh, I can listen to my iPod on the midnight shift. It's too hard during the other shifts; more work and more phone calls.


Florinda said...

Except for the quiet and reduced interruptions (and lack of management presence!), I don't envy you at all for this. Good luck this week.

Mike said...

Florinda: I don't think many people envy the midnight shift. I need all the luck I can get.