I've been on a new shift at work for a few weeks now. If you've read my previous blogs, you know this has been a long time coming. My dual role as line producer and executive producer had ended, and now I'm just executive producer. I start my day at 3am instead of midnight. It may not sound like a big deal to you, but believe me, it's a major improvement.
I used to go to bed around 2 or 3pm and get up at 10 or 11pm. Which means I spent the afternoon and evening asleep while most people were getting off work and having dinner. Now I'm awake when Pmo gets home so we watch Nightly News, or maybe an episode of The Waltons, and have supper together. We've even taken the dogs for walks the past two nights because it's been so cool. Sure, I still go to bed at an insanely early hour (7pm), but I truly feel a bit normal now.
Since this is virtually a new position at work because the job has always had two facets, I honestly didn't know what to do with myself the first full week. When you've produced an hour of news (or more) every day for 10+ years, you get used to the rhythm, the details, the deadline. The first half of my day still has that in a sense because that's when the show airs, but someone else is responsible for putting that hour together and making sure it gets done. I help, tweak, take care of issues, look for new content, etc. After the show, I move on to planning for the next day and beyond. That's where I was a bit lost at first because there's no structure, except what I make of it. And I'm a structure gal!
But I'm in the groove now. It's not that I wasn't doing anything, I just didn't know where to start. I have plenty of ideas and to-do lists that I'm now prioritizing which has helped. I attend the morning meeting. I have time to talk to people about things in person instead of having to send them an email and wait for a response. I have time to take a break and visit Pmo. I have time to plan. I have time to think.
I didn't know what to do with myself at home either. It was hard to stay awake past 3pm at first. I have at-home to-do lists, too, and other recreational things I could do like read a book or watch a movie. But I sat there in my chair for a few days, trying to figure out where to begin. My bedtime deadline was much further away now. Gizmo did not mind me sitting around at all. He was more than happy to help me be lazy. Jack was confused though. He would go into the bedroom at the normal time I would lie down, then come out a bit later, look at me, and trot down the hallway.
The 2am wakeup call is not bad. I wear a Fitbit that has a vibrating alarm so I don't wake up Pmo. Since I'm sleeping right up until the very last minute, I no longer snooze. But I do have a backup, audible alarm on my phone in case I don't get the jolt on my wrist for some reason. I lay out my clothes before I go to bed and try to have an idea of what I want to take for "lunch". I can get out the door in a little more than a half hour.
Weekends are better. I no longer have to take a nap on Saturday to make it through the day. Well, it may still happen if we're not active, but at least it's not as necessary as it once was. And I'm not completely off the hook from the night shift. I still have to fill in when someone is on vacation or sick. But for the most part, this is my new routine and I'm loving it.
I managed to stay very busy today: after leaving work and getting an oil change, I took the dogs for a walk, cleaned out my car, vacuumed the house and wrote this blog. However, I'm looking forward to "sleeping in" until 5 or 6am this weekend ;)