We take our jobs home with us like our uniforms.
When I change a bed at home, I tuck in the clean bottom sheet with a hospital corner. And of course I pull the sheet tight to make sure there is no crease in the sheet - pressure ulcer prevention at all times.
Even though I no longer practise as a nurse I still notice how much of my nursing experience has seeped into my life. In fact being a nurse colours and changes a lot of the things that you do – the small things.
Even when you are washing your hands at home, because they are a bit grubby, it’s hard not to wash them in the same way that you would if you were about to carry out an aseptic technique or had been touching a patient.
I find it hard not to rearrange my partner’s pillows when they look ridiculously uncomfortable even though I know that is the way he likes to sleep.
It’s hard not to apply a plaster to a child’s cut finger in a very specific way. If I visit someone in hospital, even if others are sitting on the bed I find it hard to do so. And I am no keener to sit in the chair that is besides the bed. It just feels wrong.
I still walk faster than all my family and friends, a habit learnt from walking up and down a ward and trailing along long corridors at speed to pick up blood, linen or drugs.
And I still enjoy cheese and onion pasties, a habit picked up from night shifts. That and lots of tomato ketchup.
I bet there are lots of bits of nursing that have crept into your everyday life and habits. Are there any that you want to share?