Lost And Found Knows No Bounds

| USA | Right | July 17, 2017

(An older lady walks into the ER waiting room, where I am sitting at the front desk.)

Lady: “I have a strange request for you, young lady. I hope you can help me.”

Me: *thinking I’ve heard strange* “Oh, I’m sure it’s not that bad, ma’am. How can I help you?”

Lady: “Well, see, I was here the other day and I left a pair of earrings here by accident.”

Me: “Oh, that’s no trouble!”

(I pick up the phone to call Security since we hand such items to our Lost and Found.)

Lady: *continuing* “Yes, they’re a small black pair of magnetic earrings. I left them on my wheelchair. ”

Me: *pauses, puts down the phone* “I’m sorry?”

Lady: “I put them on my wheelchair. See, I wasn’t feeling very well, I have vertigo, and I took them off and put them on the nearest metal item! My daughter remembered that, too.”

(At this point I’m thinking it’ll be a little harder to check, since we have about 100 or so wheelchairs on the hospital property and with patients currently using them, but I figure it’s only been a few days.)

Me: “Okay, and when was your visit, ma’am? You said a few days ago?”

Lady: “Well… actually it was a while ago. On [date three months earlier].”

Me: “Okay, ma’am, I will do my best but I have to warn you, the likelihood we’ll find them is slim after that long. But I’ll try.”

Lady: “Please do.”

(I call Security, who first asks me to repeat what I just asked for, then where the earrings might have been found, all while this lady keeps interrupting me and “helping” when I’m listening to their answers. After a few minutes they come up empty.)

Me: “Okay, ma’am, we don’t have them in our Lost and Found. We can check the wheelchairs we have out here, but unfortunately I can’t go through every—”

Lady: *indignant* “Why can’t we check all the wheelchairs?”

Me: “Ma’am, we have over 100 wheelchairs! And by now the one you were in could be on the other side of the campus, or up on a floor. Some of them have patients in them. I’m sorry but this is the best I can do. Let me help you—”

(She storms over to the wheelchairs muttering under her breath, and I follow, dutifully checking all the metal for earrings. After I have finished under her supervision, she still checks them herself and — surprise — comes up empty.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, did you check your purse when you got home in case—”

Lady: “My daughter and I checked! And she distinctly remembers me leaving them here!” *she goes into a rant about how we aren’t being helpful at all*

(I am about to ask for her name and phone number so we can call in case we find them, but that is the last proverbial straw.)

Me: “Well, all I can say is, I’m sorry, ma’am. I hope you have a nice—”

Lady: *walks away, ignoring me*

Nurse: *pops her head around the corner* “Did that really just happen?”

Calling Out The Manager For Calling Out

| Ellwood City, PA, USA | Working | July 14, 2017

(My father has a rather bad attack of diverticulitis (intestinal problems) and has to go to the hospital. I am worried and make the hour drive to my hometown after work to see him. Since I have the next day off, I stay there, and I make the following phone call more than 24 hours in advance of when I am supposed to work again. I am not in the habit of calling off for frivolous things.)

Me: “Hi, [Manager], it’s [My Name]. My dad had to go to the hospital last night. He’s still there and going to be for a couple of days and since my mom is out of town and I’m an only child, I need to call off for tomorrow so I can stay with my dad and take care of their dog.”

Manager: *pause, then, clearly annoyed* “Well, isn’t there anyone else who can handle it?”

Me: “Well… no. Again, I’m an only child and my mother is out of town.”

Manager: *again, obviously annoyed* “Well, I GUESS if you have to.”

Me: *fuming*

(The kicker? This was the same manager who FREQUENTLY called off or went home for migraines. I understand that migraines can be debilitating, but you’d think a person like that would have some sympathy. Guess not.)

If Only You Could Listen To Yourself

| Chesterfield, England, UK | Working | July 14, 2017

(I wear hearing aids and every so often have to visit audiologists and nurses to have my hearing retested, or new fittings done, or on the odd occasion to have my ears washed out. No matter who I see, the same thing always happens.)

Me: “Hi, I’m here to get my hearing checked. Noises and sounds seem to be quieter than usual recently.”

Audiologist: “Okay, please take a seat and remove your aids and pop them on this tissue on the desk whilst I have a look.”

(I do this and he/she examines my ears with their otoscope, then goes back round the desk and sits down whilst explaining for several minutes what they think is wrong with my hearing, what to do about it, and how long it might take. By now I always end up pointing out that I don’t have my aids in and I can’t hear a word they’re saying. I might be able to lip read, but that doesn’t replace what the aids do for me; I’m always amazed that people in this profession think they can be heard when the patient doesn’t have their hearing aids in.)

Had A Hand In Your Pain

, , , , | Working | June 30, 2017

This happened when I was 13. I was a country girl, to explain the next part. I am at a friend’s place for the day and she is going out in the tractor. I went along, and somehow manage to crush my hand quite badly between mechanical parts. Things get a bit fuzzy at that point, so I only remember that it hurt like hell and her mum drove me home asap. My dad takes one look at me, curses her out for not taking me to the ER, and drives me there himself. When we get there we we’re told to sit and wait.

We wait for several hours. I pass out a few times and have worked myself into hysteria. Dad is trying to get the staff to get me in quicker, at least so I can get some painkillers. A sweet guy in the waiting room with a sprained foot is called before us, and insists that the little girl (aka me) get treatment first.

I am admitted and a doctor comes by to check out my swollen and discoloured hand. What happened next still gives me nightmares.

He prods at it, and cheerfully tells me and my dad that they’ll probably have to amputate it.

Now, I was already hysterical. Being told that I am going to lose my hand did NOT help things. Things get fuzzy here, but dad later told me I had a panic attack and that a nurse had to administer a mild sedative, and that they finally gave me some heavy duty painkillers.

I remember being very impressed with the shiny elevator on the way up to x-ray and much less impressed with the technician when they had to straighten out my fingers for the x-rays.

And guess what the x-rays showed? No breaks. A slight hairline fracture to one finger, but nothing that needed a cast. Definitely not amputation material. Some nerve damage, but all in all it wasn’t that bad. Dad cried, and I cried. The nurses were shocked when they heard why and what the doctor had told a terrified teenager in pain. A supervisor was called, and the doctor came slinking back to apologize for his mistake, and to this day I’m sort of shocked my dad refrained from hitting him.

Getting Hysterectical

, , , , | General | June 25, 2017

(I got a hysterectomy because I hate my period and never want to have children. When I wake up from the anaesthetic, there’s a nurse standing over my bed.)

Nurse: “Don’t you ever want kids?”

(That was literally the first thing she said. I thought of so many responses later, but at the time I was too stunned and groggy to say anything. Also: period-free life is awesome. 10/10 highly recommend.)

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