as far as schedules, working 12 hr weekends, you miss parties, cookouts, kid’s ballgames etc but you have time off during the week for dr appts, grocery shopping, class parties and field trips. weekends/nights all the "suits" are at home and there are fewer surgeries, diagnostic tests etc. during the week there are management folks nosing around, lots of visitors, x-ray, cath lab, etc etc. so it's a trade off. nowadays, so many people work weekends and nights that you don’t feel all alone in doing so.
i will be prejudice because i love nicu. it is a place of unspeakable joy and overwhelming sadness, but fortunately the sadness is very rare and the joy awesomely frequent. it's a place where teenie, tiny babies survive and thrive, esp at umc where you will be on the cusp of all the new procedures and technology. it is a place where you can make a difference for a person's lifetime. i still have mamas of 20 yr olds meet me in the mall and thank me for caring for their baby. not a single patient i cared for in the 4 yrs i worked med/surg ever did that.
just know that wherever you choose to work, you make your decision, go with it, and never look back. you can be a great nurse and make a difference any place you practice.