Life After Residency
Our then 6 month old daughter and I had a one year vacation (as I called it) in Tampa, FL while my husband worked 80+ hours a week for his Bariatric Fellowship. It was brutal for him! I thought he was never home during residency and all the sudden he was home even LESS! He was on call every other week, for seven days straight, that whole year! Talk about exhausting! I felt bad for him. We were in a beautiful part of the country, with the beach at our fingertips and he was so tired he rarely had time to do anything fun. But don’t let our experience deter you from encouraging your spouse if he/she wants to do a fellowship. They aren’t all that brutal. Now, we look back at that blur of a year and cherish our experiences and the memories we made there.
Currently, we are PGY...oh wait, he’s an ATTENDING! Life is finally at the “it gets better” phase of life and I can say, it truly is better. Well worth the wait! My husband is on call one day a week, and one weekend a month. Night and day compared to what we were used to. He goes in at about 7am and gets home around 6pm. His schedule is fairly predictable.
We now have time to have lunch dates where he can actually show up and not leave me hanging at the hospital entrance (or sitting in my car outside). Who knew that would happen!? We also have time for date night, weekend getaways, and real vacations! And even better, he gets paid a real salary! Woo hoo! Some things didn’t change; long hours, pager going off at mid-night, hubby falling asleep two minutes after he gets home, typing up his notes at home every night, etc. But nothing is at the degree it was in residency and fellowship.
Even though life is much better, there will always be a certain degree of stress at this stage because now, every patient he sees is ‘his’ patient, not an attending ‘above’ him like in residency. If something goes wrong in surgery, there is no one else to take over. Life is real now!