It’s the end of the day and I’m walking back through the theatre suite after finishing seeing all my post-op patients. I nip back into the anaesthetic room to pick up my bag then I decide to go and have a look in the operating theatre.
I wander inside and stand in the middle of the room for a moment or two. The theatre has been cleaned after the final operation of the day. The operating table has been taken away and put in overnight storage, the theatre lights are dark and the anaesthetic machine is turned off and sits quietly in the corner of the room. In contrast to the sights and sounds of the surgery that was happening half an hour or so beforehand, the room is very peaceful.
I did a good job today. There were no dramas. There were no situations that scared me. There were a couple of patients who were “anaesthetic challenges” but I managed to guide them through their operation competently. All the patients were feeling fine when I saw them on the wards and they all thanked me for looking after them.
One of the things I really like about anaesthetics is the real feeling of satisfaction I get on days like this.
I give myself a little smile, turn off the lights and head home.