There Is Such A Thing As A Free Lunch

, , , , , | | Healthy | June 15, 2019

I was feeling miserable at bedtime, and by 2:00 am I realized that it was an allergic reaction. My knees, elbows, neck, and spine were all swelling up and had gotten red, hot, itchy, and painful. When my six-year-old son woke up around 6:30 am, I grabbed some bananas and granola bars for him to eat in the car and headed to the hospital.  

By noon, I had had an IV of medication for almost four hours and was starting to feel better, while my son was bored and very hungry. The nurse served my lunch, and even though I was feeling better and getting hungry, I just grabbed the tiny, Barbie-sized coffee and gave the rest to my long-suffering son, who really needed it. About ten minutes later, the nurse came back, saw me with the coffee cup and my son with the rest of the lunch, and left.

About ten minutes after that, she came back claiming that someone had been released after the lunch orders were placed and that there was an extra lunch, so I could have it “for my son” if I wanted.

The emergency was swamped that day — I think my nurse had about 15 people she was looking after — and for her to take the time to make that gesture meant a lot for me, especially since I didn’t get released until about 5:00 pm. I still don’t know if there really was an extra lunch on the floor, or if she ordered it special, and I wouldn’t have starved not being able to eat until later, but I was definitely more comfortable and happy with a lunch in me, and I am super grateful for the   nurses in our local hospital!

Addicted To Making Addicts

, , , , | | Healthy | June 14, 2019

(I’ve suffered from chronic pain for ten years now. I’m on opioid medications and have been for five years. I have to go to my doctor every month for the prescriptions since they’re strictly controlled. One visit, I get a new nurse. She sees my reason for the visit but apparently ignores my medical history.)

Nurse: “So, you’re after a refill for [current medication]?”

Me: “Yeah, I need to get a refill before I go out of town next week.”

Nurse: “You know that’s an opioid, right?”

Me: “I’d hope so; I’ve been on it for years now.”

(She looks at my weight on my vitals. Because of my condition, I’m on the lighter side.)

Nurse: “Well, I’m telling the doctor not to. You’re obviously an addict.”

Me: “What?!”

Nurse: “You’re just on it for the high! Whoever started you on it is an idiot!”

Me: “[Doctor] put me on it!”

Nurse: “Well, I’m taking you off of it! It’s for your own good!”

(She storms out. I’m in too much shock to say or do much of anything. A few minutes later, my doctor comes in.)

Doctor: “So, the nurse suggested I cut you off of [medication].”

Me: “Yeah, she yelled at me and called me an addict.”

Doctor: “I told her that unless she knew a way to fix [condition], you were staying on it. She said you didn’t look like you had anything, but we’re going to talk to her about jumping to conclusions. So, usual pharmacy?”

(While I’ve seen her at that practice since, I’ve never had to deal with her again.)

A Rabbi And A Blind Man Walk Into A Hospital…

, , , , , | | Healthy | June 13, 2019

(My father happens to be totally blind, and he and his rabbi are visiting my mother in the hospital where she is being treated for cancer. Besides being blind, my father is able-bodied. The rabbi walks with a very defined limp.)

Father: “Thank you for driving me here, Rabbi. I just wanted to warn you that the nurses here must think people walk and hear with their eyes. They’re going to offer me a wheelchair, and they’ll address any questions to you.”

Rabbi: “What? I’m sure they won’t.”

Father: “Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”

(The rabbi and my father walk into the hospital and go to sign in as visitors. Immediately…)

Nurse: “Wait here while I call someone to bring a wheelchair.”

Rabbi: “It’s okay; I can manage the elevator without it.”

Nurse: “What? Oh, no, it’s not for you. It’s for him.”

Father: “I don’t need a wheelchair, really.”

Nurse: *to the rabbi* “Are you sure he’ll be okay without it?”

Rabbi: *to my father, after they manage to turn down the wheelchair and head for the elevator* “You were right!”

How To Showcase A Total D**k

, , , , , , | | Healthy | June 12, 2019

(I am a nurse. I am invited by one of my former boyfriends to go to a movie with him and his current girlfriend. Since I have no current boyfriend, he says that I can bring a friend with me. I ask a former classmate from nursing school along. The classmate is black. After we are picked up, the former boyfriend starts making bigoted jokes. After each one, he will look at my classmate in the mirror and say, “Oh, no offense.” After about three of these, the classmate turns to me.)

Classmate: “[My Name], we had an interesting case last week.”

Me: *who knows a straight line when I hear one* “Oh, really? What happened?”

Classmate: “Well, we had a new patient on the hall, and as the charge nurse, I was the one checking him in. The whole time, though, he kept making remarks.”

Me: “What kind of remarks?”

Classmate: “Oh, you know. Sexual remarks.”

Me: “So, what happened after that?”

Classmate: “Well, you know at my hospital, nurses are required to insert Foley catheters. So, I was getting him ready for it, and he started making his remarks again. I proceeded with the intubation, though. But I’m afraid I made a mistake.”

Me: “What kind of mistake?”

Classmate: “I forgot to use any jelly.”

(There was an audible hiss from the driver, and the classmate looked up at him in the mirror.)

Classmate: “Oh, no offense!”

That Was Knot Meant To Happen

, , , , , | | Healthy | June 10, 2019

When I was about 17, I was treated for an ingrown toenail. After several tries, the doctor decided to remove part of the nail and the root of the nail so that it wouldn’t grow back.

The doctor prescribed the strongest pain medication he could. A stronger medication would have counted as narcotic. I went home, an hour passed and the local anesthetic wore off. I took the pain medication as the pain got stronger.

Due to brain damage I suffered as a child, my pain reception doesn’t work that well. So, I soon reckoned that something was off, since the pain continued to increase. I double-checked the medication, took some more, and waited. The pain still increased. I was going up the walls.

Now it was too late to revisit the doctor, so my dad drove me to the hospital. Luckily, the emergency room was quite empty. I told the doctor there what was up and he wanted to take a look. As soon as he cut the bandage from my toe, the pain was gone. He reapplied a bandage, put the old one in a bag, and told me to bring it to my doctor the next day.

So, the next day, I was back at my surgeon. He was a cheery guy normally. But as he took the bandage from the bag, he grew silent. His head whole head went red as he calmly excused himself. He went on the floor and bellowed through the whole office for the nurse, who had applied the bandage the day before. He was so loud, I expected windows to shatter. As soon as he saw her, he chewed her out. He was fuming.

Afterward, he explained the problem: the nurse had fixed the bandage with a knot, which was a normal procedure, but in the process, she had placed this knot right on the incision in the nailbed. The pressure applied this way was the source for the pain. No amount of pain medication could have helped against this.

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