Monday, June 21, 2010

Eight Things You Learn at the local ER

Today I had an unexpected three and half hour visit at my local ER.  I was having some minor chest pains that I was pretty sure was just heartburn, but given my family's not-so-great heart history I wasn't entirely sure.  So I called my insurance's hotline, spoke to the advice nurse, who spoke to my doctor, who said to go to the ER. Ugh. So off I went.

First - I learned that it doesn't matter the size of the ER that you go to - even if it is an auxiliary wing of the hospital - you will still have to wait a ridiculously long time to be called back to be seen by the nurse and then have to wait forever for them to do everything to you that they need to do.

Second - A hospital gown is a highly functional garment.  It mixes well with all sorts of pieces and even went well with my skinny black pants and heels.

Third - If you burst into tears when the tech tells you he's going to put an IV into you, you might escape having to have an IV put into you.

Fourth - When you wear a claddagh ring and you are single and the tech asks you about it, you have to admit that no, you are not currently in love.

Fifth - When the physician's assistant asks you what your stress level is, you look at him and laugh. "Typical high American stress?" "Uh, yeah, exactly."

Sixth - When the nurse walks in with a cup of a Mylanta/Maalax concoction and asks you, "You know when you take a shot?" as a way to explain how to take it, you have to admit that "Actually, no, I haven't".  Which is true - I'm not one to really take shots.

Seventh - When the techs and nurses leave you in the room by yourself for a long time, your imagination starts to run wild and you imagine yourself in a "ER" or "Grey's Anatomy" episode as one of those dumb patients that comes in with seemingly innocuous symptoms that turns out to be something major and if any of the techs, nurses, and doctors have wildly dramatic lives like the characters on those shows.

Eighth - It's not the prick or the drawing of blood that hurts the most.  It's after they take the needle out that your hand hurts like a mofo.  But then you take off the bandage a couple of hours later expecting to see a huge gaping hole that is still bleeding, and realize that the prick in your epidural layer is so minuscule you would need a microscope to actually see it and feel very foolish.

Everything ended up absolutely fine - they diagnosed me with heartburn/acid reflux, which is what I thought it was.  All is well.


Ali Caudill said...

this post cracked me up. i went recently too, i had a feeling it was all good but kind of felt like i was dying... ha. your way of putting it into words was hilarious. i'd like a funny post when the bills come because i'm having a hard time finding them humorous.... i'm glad you're okay! :)

Kristen said...

Lauren! Are you kidding me?! So sorry that you visited the ER, but so happy that you wrote about it. I'm glad you're ok!! :)

Anonymous said...

Oh man! A) I am so glad you are ok:) But, I have to say, that was one good post....I heart you! Always and forever, so keep that heart burn in check!

Tommy and Katie Webster said...

Yikes! I'm so sorry you had to go the ER -- and I hope you are feeling better. HOWEVER, I must take this opportunity to challenge your ethics -- chest pain or not.

You won't take shots but you throw the phrase "mofo" around? That type of vulgarity usually comes from merchant marines, longshoremen, or single women who partake in an occasional shot that they won't admit to. I'm just sayin'...

Lauren said...

Kat - You got me :) lol

Luxury Retreat Hawaii said...

Ooohhh... I thought this was only a very humorous or creative post rather. i didn't know that it was your story.
sorry, but how's your feeling today?
are you OK now?