Not Hearing The Love Here, Mom

, , , , , | | Healthy | June 21, 2019

(My mother is hearing-impaired. She’s not totally deaf, but if she’s not wearing her hearing aids, you need to speak very loudly and slowly for her to understand you. She’s been this way since she was five years old due to a case of German measles damaging her auditory nerves. Fast forward twenty years. She is pregnant with me and my brother — I’m female. She knows she is having twins because her doctor heard two heartbeats, but because this is before sonograms are a thing, she does not know what the genders of the babies are. She just assumes that they will both be the same, and she and my dad choose two girl names and two boy names. She goes into labor, but things are just not progressing. Her doctor decides she needs a C-section. This is also in the days before epidurals are commonly used, so they knock her out for the operation, having her remove her hearing aids so they won’t get lost. The babies are delivered and my mom goes to recovery. As she starts to wake up, the nurse comes up to her. Note that my mom is still not wearing her hearing aids.

Nurse: “[Something unintelligible].”

Still-Groggy Mom: “Huh?”

Nurse: “Waa waaa wa waa waa wa waaa…”

Yet Still Groggy Mom: “What?”


Mom: “Oh, they can’t be mine.”

(Rejected before she even saw me! Thank heaven it was the drugs talking!)

Urine For A Real Treat

, , , , , , , , | | Healthy | June 17, 2019

My friend is a great prankster. He was in the hospital one time and the nurse came in to leave a specimen cup so they could collect a urine sample. My friend had received apricot nectar with his breakfast. After the nurse left, he poured the apricot nectar into the specimen cup. When the nurse returned, she looked at and commented that it looked pretty bad. Picking up the cup, my friend drank it down, commenting, “Well, I’ll run it through again!”

Leave A Black Mark On That Patient’s File

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

(I work as a dental assistant. After doing some fillings for a patient, I walk her out to the front desk and she stops in the bathroom first. I notice our receptionist is busy with a call, and the dentist doesn’t have another patient for about 15 minutes, so I decide I’ll help out at the front desk and see the last patient out. She comes out of the bathroom and we have this conversation at the desk.)

Patient: “The dentist put a black filling in my mouth!”

Me: “I’m sorry, but there isn’t any such thing as a black filling. I can assure you [Doctor] only placed white composite fillings that match your tooth shade.”

Patient: “It’s right here! It’s black!” *points to a tooth on the opposite side from what we worked on*

Me: “Ma’am, [Doctor] placed fillings on the other side of your mouth. He didn’t touch the tooth you’re pointing to. What your pointing to is a silver amalgam filling that has aged and is no longer shiny, causing it to appear almost black.”

Patient: “No. This was not here before!”

Me: “Ma’am, where is your mouth frozen?”

Patient: *points to the side opposite of tooth she is complaining about*

Me: “That’s the side [Doctor] worked on, not the tooth you notice the dark spot on.”

Patient: “No, he did both. Go check with him or the nurse that was working with him.”

Me: “I am the assistant that was working with him. I’m just helping our receptionist, as she was busy with a call when you first came to the desk, and I can assure you that we did not work on that tooth or that side of your mouth. That is an old silver filling. If it bothers you, we can have the dentist look at it and see if he can replace it, but we’ll need to book you another appointment for that.”

Patient: “No, it’s fine.” *pays and leaves*

Receptionist: “I’m so glad that happened to you and not me.”

He Literally Has A Screw Loose

, , , , , | | Healthy | June 7, 2019

(My stepdad has Meniere’s disease, and years ago, he had a doctor remove one of the ossicle bones in his ear, rendering him with a complete conductive loss in one ear. Because this is the only reason he can’t hear, his doctor recommends he try a bone-anchored hearing aid, which bypasses the outer and middle ear and lets him hear through the inner ear. The initial surgery involves placing a screw in his skull, and before he can use the hearing aid, this area must heal. It’s been taking a while to heal, and one night, while my mom is at work, my stepdad calls me to the bathroom.)

Me: “What’s wrong?”

Stepdad: “Come here. Look at my screw.”

(I take a look at the area, but I can’t see the screw. It’s so covered in blood that all I can see is an indention, so I fear the screw has fallen in.)

Me: “I can’t see it!”

Stepdad: “That’s because it’s right here.”

(He held out his hand, where he’d been holding the screw the whole time. After this, I made him call my mom’s work to let her know. They sent her home because “her husband’s screw fell out of his head.”)

The Conj-ER-ing

, , , , , , | | Friendly | May 28, 2019

(I’m a PhD student at university connected to a teaching hospital. As part of my research, I interact with the surgical staff. One day, a couple of scrub nurses are telling me hospital stories.)

Nurse #1: “I’ll be honest, though; the scariest moment for me wasn’t about surgery at all. It was when I thought – like seriously, really believed – that we were haunted.”

Nurse #2: “What? I’ve never heard this story!”

Nurse #3: “Oh, I know this one. We had a patient – young girl, twenties, [medical condition], real long, black hair. She had to come back here for surgery and was always real sweet but complained that her hair smelled like hospital after each procedure. Then, finally, it seemed like she’d actually recovered.”

Nurse #1: “She needed a couple of followups afterward, but everything was going smoothly. Plus, each time, she brought some homemade desserts for the staff. But us, we never really got to see her after she wasn’t in for surgery anymore. Just, ‘Oh, [Patient] was here; she brought this lovely note and a tray of brownies.’ So, my memories of her are, you know, blue hospital gown, long, black hair, not looking healthy.”

Nurse #2: “But I actually ran into her a few times. Just luck, really, happened to see her in the hallways on two of her followups. Then one day– Wait, no. Remember the old phone we had in the nurses’ station? How awful it was?”

Nurse #1: “I’m out getting lunch, and my cell goes off. It’s [Nurse #2] calling, and she says, ‘Hey, remember patient? She’s here, and she died,’ and then hangs up. And I’m thinking, what on earth? She’s here for a routine followup and she died? Must be a mess out there for [Nurse#2] to be so abrupt on the phone. So, I drop my lunch and rush back to see what’s up. And I turn down the hallway in [area] – big, long hallway, with those awful, buzzy lights, and like usual it’s empty. Then, the door at the other end opens and a figure walks in. It looks like [Patient], but her hair’s gone blank white and she’s wearing head-to-toe black with a big silver skull pattern on her skirt. She opens her mouth and says, ‘I’ve been looking for you!’ and I, being a professional, scream, ‘What the f***?’ and run out of the hall.”

Nurse #2: “So, that’s the story about how I called [Nurse #1], told her a patient dyed her hair, and had an incident so bad that they replaced all our phones.”

Nurse #3: “Is this why some patient files say if the patient’s a goth or not?”