Friday, October 17, 2014

Clown with her pants down

I managed to charm my way into leaving an hour early today.
 Hasta la vista CICU!.
See you on Monday. Sadly. 
I had a huge mug in one hand, Ipad and note book in the other, Stethoscope, Pocket medicine, maxwell, reflex hammer, papers, crap, more crap and a bottle of water in my white coat pockets.
I felt like a coat hanger.
Am I wearing the white coat or is the white coat wearing me? 
That's debatable on a most days

As i took quick, giant, don't look at me, don't talk to me strides to the elevator, I notice this dude looking at me. Kind of used to that. The looks. I'm quite a sight on most days. 
Scrubs and Converse almost don't go together in the ICU, not very professional but at least i didn't wear my pink pair today
Still, i took a cursory look at thy self and noticed my scrub pant strings were hanging a little far down to be properly tied.

I got on the elevator with a large group of people and with some stealth ninja moves as i'm practically arm less, I checked and Yep, my pants were untied
Oh boy! 
I got off the elevator and what do you know, all those people got off with me. 
As i walked I felt my pants sliding down.
I didn't need to be psychic to know this will not end well. 
So I struggled to free one hand and in the process spilt some tea on myself but at least i could attempt to hold my pants up.
So I'm walking in front of the people i got off the elevator with holding my freaking pants up with one hand.
 I knew there was  no rest room close by and there was no way i could keep walking holding my pants up and struggling with the freaking huge mug, ipad and notebook in front of all those people
So i calmly respected myself and stopped by a window so they could walk by me,
Ignored the guy walking towards me making no attempt to disguise the fact the he was looking at me holding my pants up. Son of a bitch!
then I jejely grabbed both pants strings firmly,
owned the fact that i looked like a clown and made my way to my locker,
which required walking down three long halls, getting on another elevator and going up 9 floors. 

But i made it without dropping trou

*forcing thyself to write*

Thursday, October 9, 2014


 These eyes have seen
babies born 
some through the vagina
others through the uterus in the OR
some with lots of blood and gore, others barely making a mess
Singletons, multiples
all new life added to the world

 These eyes have seen
fetuses turned products of conception
9 weeks - perfectly formed fingers and toes
10 weeks- fingers, toes, hands, legs, vertebrae, eyes
12 weeks- hands, legs, ribs- look, a penis
15 weeks - even bigger - let's put it all together
My heart skips a bit
I try not to forget to breath. Straight face.
"yes, I'm okay"

These eyes have seen
a body still warm to the touch with undigested food in the stomach
a body with fresh blood dripping from a half blown off head, 
brain and skull missing from where they should be
Lots of flesh hanging from the side of the head, looking out of place.
A decomposing body, dry, shriveled and green, smell out of this world
alone in an apartment, dead for weeks.
No one missed him for that long

These eyes have seen
generous and kind souls who donated their bodies to science
Cadavers - a welcome to med school gift
Block 1 -Cover the heads with towels, Ease them in gently
Depersonalize - Head and neck is Block 3
Skin off, piece by piece, organ by organ, 
You form an attachment - Our body. You name her Rosa
 Body transected, skull taken off, looking less human with each passing block 
"What are you having for lunch"
"This looks like steak"
"I am so hungry"
Block 4 - pelvis and lower extremities
"We need another penis"

These eyes have seen
fathers, mothers, sons and daughters
communicating one day, intubated the next, dead in a week
obs for colonoscopy prep - just one overnight stay 
 goes home 2 weeks later on hospice
come in for an elective procedure, take a turn for the worse
gets better, sigh of relief, things are looking up
Flips a switch, DNR/DNI, comfort cares - all in less than 48 hours
family all around, tears, group hug - last breaths
  I say my silent goodbye wishing i could unsee the grief of this family
 I turn around and quietly leave the room, 
careful not to intrude on this scared moment
 as family help their loved one make the transition to death

It hasn't gotten easier but at the same time it has.
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