Gumby found this on a strange photo website and called me over to show it to me.
I chuckled briefly and then reconsidered.
Oh, my god. That's exactly how I feel right now.
I've never worked more than three twelve hour shifts in a row. Never. I've worked shorter shifts for more days. I've worked three, gone out of town for a week and gone straight back into another three - but never more. The fact that I brought this on myself almost makes it worse, except that I had no choice. My mom will be back from the lake next week for a couple of days before she leaves. The kids have days off school. There's some other conflict, but I'm too stressed out to remember it. I keep telling myself that I had no choice, but it doesn't help.
I've tried to do nice things for myself. There's a big bag of homemade trail mix with all of my favorite things in it - heavy on the dark chocolate. A bottle of chocolate caramel coffee creamer to throw in the fridge at work. A brand new skein of gorgeous yarn and new circular needles to make myself a winter hat, since sleep is always the issue in these long work runs and I know that I need something zen and repetitive to knock me out. I might even possibly have a big container of mint chip ice cream in the freezer. (It's right next to the big container of Cookies 'n' Cream).
Psychologically, I know that the first day is always the worst. At the end of the third you're pretty much flying on endorphins anyway. I have no idea how five is going to feel, but I'm about to find out.
And man, oh man, am I scared.