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This Rule Is A Lie (Down)

, , , , , | Healthy | June 22, 2018

(I’ve ended up in the ER waiting room with an excruciating spinal headache, due to a myelogram test I underwent four days earlier. This means I can’t have any part of my spine bent for more than a minute or so without the headache coming on and making me severely sick. I’ve been becoming severely sick the entire four days anytime I’ve so much as gone to the toilet, so I’ve been forced to be bedridden the entire time. The waiting room has nowhere to lie down, not even two chairs near each other without a non-removable armrest between them. I also know that if I stand in place straight up for more than a few minutes my blood pressure will drop and I’ll lose consciousness. For lack of any other solution, I’ve crawled to lie down on the floor in a semi-clean corner, with my head under one of the unused seats, to hide from the bright ceiling lights and be as much out of the way as possible. I’ve been waiting this way for over an hour. I carefully get up to ask the check-in nurse how much longer it’ll be. She can’t tell me; she can only say that I’ll have to wait some more. I go back to my place on the floor. In less than a minute, a security guard comes up.)

Guard: “Miss, you can’t lie on the floor here.”

Me: “What? I need to be lying down. If I don’t, I’ll become badly sick.”

Guard: “Well, but surely you can sit down, miss; there are seats here. You just can’t be lying down.”

Me: *bewildered at having to explain such obvious things in an ER waiting room, and after already having lain there for an hour without being bothered or bothering anyone* “I’m sorry, but I can’t sit anywhere. The reason I’ve come to the ER is that I have a specific condition where I become severely sick when I’m sitting. There’s no way I can physically be in that position right now. I have to be lying down so I don’t become ill.”

Guard: “Oh, well… But miss, there’s a rule that says you aren’t allowed to lie on the floor in this room. So couldn’t you please just go over right there and sit in one of these nice empty seats, anyway? There’s a rule, you see.” *looks at me expectantly like he’s making a perfectly reasonable suggestion.*

Me: “…”

(I checked later: there were no signs anywhere in the room stating such a rule.)

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