Int – Hospital room – evening
Text message notification rings on the phone.
Wife: Your little girl sure misses u. She loves u an awful lot. Finishing dinner then rest of hw then we’ll call u
Husband: What brought this on?
Wife: She broke down crying when I picked her up from music cried all the way home
Wife: She said she would give anything to have u home
Husband: A lot of emotions at 9, almost 10.
Wife: I guess, I think she understands things and feels at a much deeper level now.
That was the quick surprise text conversation I had with my wife tonight. I was watching a movie on my iPad while freezing my ass off in my hospital room because the nurse turned the temperature down, not up, giving you a clue as to how old she is because she can’t read the microscopic numbers on the dial.
Yes, I am in hell again. My numbers were down this week and here I am in a carnival funhouse. And if there is a theme to this visit, it’s “ignorance is bliss.” I say that because I think it might be better not to pay attention to everything around me while I’m here. Just let things go. Don’t worry about mistakes. But I can’t do it.
I should have known I was in for a bad trip when they put me on a floor where CF patients are like a visiting Panda from China. Oh, he’s so cute. Does he bite? What is this thing you call “cystic fibrosis”? Did you catch it from from eating bad bamboo?
The mistakes started with my port. The nurse had never seen one like mine, even though they stuck it in me at this hospital. She got the needle in just fine but had been sick the day of port needle training and pressed the wings and out popped the needle. Oops, that was a surprise.
Is there someone who knows how to access these you could ask?
Back with another nurse, she stabbed me in the chest again, but it wouldn’t flush unless she pressed on it as hard as she could.
Are you going to stay in my room 24/7 and keep pressure on it the entire time? I asked.
What size needle did you use, the helper asked?
Answer in my words: the wrong size.
How about you try this time, I said to the helper.
He used the correct size needle and proved the statement “the third time is the charm” is true.
Then there was my night nurse who was on his second day soloing. A confidence builder for me, especially when he programmed the IV pump, making it seem as complex as programming the space shuttle for take off. “What happens if I press this button?”
So, as one of the antibiotics runs for four hours, which is hell being chained up for so long and makes me wonder if the benefit outweighs the additional time on the pole, I was surprised to see a full IV bag when the morning nurse came in. So was she, surprised, to see it. Such a mystery for first thing in the morning. Should have had a second cup of joe, my good nurse.
Did it infuse? Or did the saline back up? Is that even possible? Did I just miss a dose? We will never know. It’s the Mystery of the Self-Filling IV Bag and unfortunately Nancy Drew wasn’t here to solve it.
So that’s the news. I am crossing my fingers and hoping they take me to the Panda floor soon so I can be with my own kind and be fed by zookeepers who know what a Panda likes to eat, when a Panda likes to eat, and, most important of all, to never to tell a Panda that he or she is a Panda.