Saturday, June 23, 2018

trial by fire

I want a weekend all to myself.

This trial by fire

Daily scoldings

Lives on the line

Incompetent nurses

Unreasonable families

------------------------------------

But then there are the kids who care for their parents

The nurses who are freakin cool

The patients who are also trying their best

The senior who says 'good job'

And Mr Bean isn't really that bad even if you have it every day

And coworkers who come find me to offer help

Or offer a lift home



Really, what more could I ask for?

Other than a weekend off?

Friday, June 22, 2018

Some ground rules

If you have something to ask me, ASK IT. Don't waste my time beating around the bush and making me waste brainpower trying to figure out what you want. ASK IT. Acting helpless and coy just makes me lose my temper, especially when it's 7pm and I STILL HAVE THINGS TO DO. If it's that urgent, so urgent you need me to do it NOW or within the hour then you should be able to put it into a sentence and ASK IT DON'T YOU THINK.
.

Isn't it just basic manners that when you hold a conversation, you take into account what the other party is interested in? Or do you really think that ___ is so interesting. Do I look interested to you? I didn't think so.
.

If you're going to call me about panadol freaking panadol there is NO NEED TO FREAK OUT. You should be able to call me without sounding like you're having a heart attack on the line.
.

I AM NOT GOD. WE ARE NOT GOD. THERE IS NO HUNDRED PERCENT SUCCESS RATE FOR ANYTHING. ANYTHING.
.

I am not your counsellor. Please don't call me to talk about how unfair life is for you, unless you're actually my friend then sure.
.

This is a hospital, not a hotel. Why is it so surprising that we don't serve your favourite food? This is not a bloody cafe.

Also, this is not a pasar malam. YOU DO NOT TRY TO BARGAIN PRICES WITH ME. We do not give 'discounts' for heaven's sake.
.

Don't expect us to solve your knee pain/constipation/random bone bump AND your headaches, stomach pain, etc etc etc when you came in for a fracture. We cannot make you 20 again.
.

STOP TALKING WHILE I'M AUSCULTATING YOUR CHEST.
.

DON'T ASK ME FOR DIRECTIONS/THE NEAREST TOILET/THE WHATEVER WHEN I'M POST CALL AND WAITING FOR MY TAXI. When I haven't slept for 36 hours everything looks like mud. DON'T BOTHER ME.
.


I'm going to change my name tag to 'RAGE'

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

When

Monday, June 18, 2018

After my 36 hour shift, the last failed blood draw and a sound scolding, I went into the emergency stairway and cried. Respiratory rate 30/min, I cried my eyes swollen and my head dizzy and my fingers cold, and then the consultant needed me at the patient's bedside to round with him. I did it with my head down/tilted awkwardly.

I don't know how to explain the endless nightmare of call after call through the night, people nearly dying, people going actually demented, people needing tubes stuck up various places, people...dying. Failed blood draws. Having to prioritise between the patient shrieking and being violent, and the patient who is deteriorating ever so slowly, and the patient spiking some scary fever, and the patient who can't pee and is holding half a litre in her bladder. Hearing 'saturation 70%' on the phone and my mind blanking out because 90% = danger, 80% = intubate, and 70%, to me, means dead.

Sometimes I wonder what I'm here for. Am I here to 'cure sometimes, treat often, and comfort always'? Am I here to draw blood, make sure he's fit for op, make sure he stays alive until his body gets back into working condition and he can be discharged? What am I here for? I'm bewildered that I'm asking such an elementary question, but really, the last time I cried that hard..

Starting this weekend it'll be tougher, because I'll be the only one covering for my team (the other HO's going on a well-deserved break). And I don't know if I can handle it until I'm juggling these things, but I'm not being gung-ho when I say it could be worse.

Because it could be worse. It can always be worse. I know that now.

So I'm glad it's not. I'm glad I have a pretty good team. I'm glad there were people who comforted me after I cried. I'm glad I have the courage to do the difficult things I must do. I'm glad...that I have time for lunch everyday I guess. Fighting.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

I woke up today with my heart aching a little in the background. Didn't really notice it until I was eating breakfast.

What is this? And wisps of it came back to me. Aaah, I dreamt of him last night.

It's so lonely. Where are you? It's so lonely when I can only meet someone in my dreams.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Lost my temper right after I said I wouldn't lose it. Lost myself in my anger just like that.

Sigh. Good thing I have this blog I guess, so I can trace all my inconsistencies.

I don't know. We're not here to clear your plates, or hear you talk for the sake of talking, or order laxatives at 3am. Don't you think?

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Unlike my colleagues, after this year I'm not going to continue working in the hospital. I'll be going somewhere entirely different. The brevity of my experience makes me feel... I suppose I treasure this more. I miss it already.

This is how it is with many things in my life. Because everything ends eventually, the more I value something, the more I miss it in the moment.

But it's ok. Remember that letting go of 'the fear of the end' and 'the hope that it will last longer' are the same thing. Remember that... this is just life, after all. You don't know how it will end. You don't know how long it will last. Hoping and fearing are just wasted effort. Just experience and be thankful.