I've had my first week of midshifts now. It's very odd to work a different shift at the same damn job and feel so out of place, but for the last 4 hours of my shifts "my people," the nightshifters, are there, so I feel more normal. It's too early for a definitive prediction, but I do think the chances are good this shift will be excellent for me. It's got pros and cons like everything else, but I can sleep in and stay up late, and it's broken up (different people coming and going) so it seems to go more quickly. Alternatively, there's a good solid butt-kicking all 12 hours, so it also goes quickly. Ha. It's also illuminating to be there for all the staff changes; I work with all the providers and all the nurses because of my strange overlapping shift.
There are strange and unanticipated perks to being there during the day. For example, there are humans downstairs who make food and bring it up on trays to my hungry patients---no scavenging in cupboards for snacks! There are also humans who come start difficult IVs (at night, the ER nurses are IV therapy). And humans in housekeeping who clean rooms and other messes. I keep leaping up to clean rooms and people are already doing it. A nurse could get spoiled with this type of thing. Dayshift sort of makes nightshift look like the frontier. Which isn't a bad thing. As I said, I feel much more at home for the end of my shift, which is on the nightshift.
Downsides...my GI system is shaken up by this change, and I dimly recall this happened when I originally started working nights, many moons ago. My immune system is shaken up, but I've been sick for a month so I don't know what to blame. My pets are dubious and confused. Nights are supposed to be playtime, and mean mommy keeps yelling "QUIET!" I'm not sure whether I'm having trouble sleeping at night because I'm not used to it, because my pets are jumping around, or because it's just weirdly quiet at night. Apparently I've gotten used to sleeping in the light and with outside noise.
But these are minor things. I'm uncharacteristically hopeful that I'll be a happier camper with this huge lifestyle change. I'm lucky. I have the job I've always wanted on a shift nearly custom-designed for me. And, as always, I'M A GOOD NURSE, AND PEOPLE LIKE ME. Heh heh.