Hello MIM! I love this blog and have been reading it for a couple of years now. I think its wonderful that a group of female physicians are able to talk at liberty about their personal lives and struggles with motherhood.
I am currently a hospitalist who has been in practice for a few years. I love hospital medicine and I really enjoy my job but after I had a child, everything has changed. Although I never particularly cared for my 7 on/7 off, I have begun to resent it. I this roller coaster of a life where I either am with my child 24/7 or only see her for an hour or two a day and its not working. I've spoken with other mothers in the same situation and I have heard it. "7 on/7 off is great! You can be a part time SAHM!" "7 on/7 off is awful! How do you ever see your kid??" People also bring up the point that at least with shift work, you don't feel the pressure of trying to get out early each day and that your time at home is protected. I'm truly unable to make my own assessment because I have not had the benefit of working another schedule for comparison. Now I am at a crossroads because I have the opportunity to leave this group and go to a more conventional schedule: Monday through Friday where you rotate morning and afternoon ER admits and can leave when you're finished. I'm worried that the naysayers will be right and that my life will be more stressful if I have the opportunity to leave early because I will be rushing through my work. On the other hand, there are days here when there really is no need for me to be at work for a 12 hour shift and I feel frustrated that I can't leave when I'm finished. I also feel that my life needs more stability on a regular basis. Its difficult to keep up with friends, exercise routines, house work when I'm working 12 hour shifts 50% of the month. Everything tends to go into disarray when I start my work week and I'm hopeful that can change if I am able to have more time in the evening.
Has anyone had experience with this dilemma? Any insight into either schedule?