Thursday, September 30, 2010

Peanut Butter reminds me of YOU

I went into work Sunday night. It was a veryyyy busy night for me. I was ready to ask for an orientation since I had been precepting all year. I forgot how exhausting it can be to take care of patients by myself. Whew!

Anyways, I started out the night with 2 patients. Within 30 min of shift change, I got a new admission. I got her name, looked up the info. Figured I'd have to transfuse some blood. Not a big deal, but can be time consuming with the hourly vital signs. As soon as the patient comes off the elevator with transport, she's saying "I know you!!!!!" I look at her, read her name again...I have no clue who she is. But you can't say that, so instead I try to play along. She starts naming the city I live in, what my favorite pizza is & mentions how she thinks my blue eyes are beautiful. Ok, she does know Kidding. But putting all those things together brought it all back. I knew exactly who she was. I had her has a patient about a year ago. It's amazing how you can leave an impression on someone. I mean, I can barely remember what I did a few days ago...much less what some stranger may have crossed my path a year ago.

So I get her settled into bed. Her daughters are with her. She is trying to shoo them out the door by saying she needs to spend some time with me. Inside I am cracking up. This patient is in her late 70's. I have no idea why she is fascinated with me. While her daughters realize I am just a kind person, they are a little peeved their mother is kicking them out. I think at the same time though, they felt ok leaving her there....since she was so happy to see me.

She then brings up how I always brought her peanut butter & graham crackers last time she was there. And then she says "Every time I see peanut butter, it reminds me of you." Lol...cracks me up every time. Who says this to people? So now of course when I see peanut butter, it reminds me of her saying that I remind her of peanut butter. And it probably always will remind me of that.

Her hemoglobin was a little on the low side, nothing critical, but they ordered 2 units of RBC's. She also was feeling a little shaky. I got the blood transfused during the shift & came back the next night to find they were prepping her for a colonoscopy & EGD the next see if there was an active bleed. Luckily, there was no active bleed...but at the same time, no explanation as to why her hemoglobin dropped. That's the part of medicine I don't like...not knowing why something out of the ordinary happens.

I had another patient that came in with a hemoglobin of 5.0. That is critical. Transfused a total of 4 units...but unable to find any active bleed. Huh? And I have this patient in my care for a total of 30 min & his mother is asking me why is he in this condition. Ummmm, I just got out of report. I'm lucky I know his name at this point. She needs to speak with the doctors because I had no info to give her. I felt awful because she was ready to burst into tears with no answers.

I have reached a point where I definitely know I'm getting old. When I think of the above patient, the first thought that pops into my head is "This kid..."....only he's not a kid. He's about 10 yrs younger than me....but as I'm giving report, I hear myself saying "This kid....". Have I reached the point of calling everyone younger than me a kid??? Oh boy. I'm old!!!

Anyways, back to my first patient. We frequently "round" (check in) on our patients. So I stopped by & asked if there was anything I could do for her or get for her. She says "What I've been asking you for all along...your address & phone number." Ummm, I can't give out personal info & at the same time, I'm trying not to even think about why she would want that info. Especially when she asked for my phone number but followed it up with "I'm not going to call you." Huh? Since she asked about 6 times for the information, I gave her one of the hospital business cards with their address & ph number on it. I explained to her that it's against hospital policy to give out personal info. She was fine with it & she loved the business card. Even put it away in a safe place. I'm hoping she's not planning on sending me a year's supply of peanut butter or anything. :)

It's been a strange week. My orientee is on her own for the first time this week & her patient wrote her a 2 page love letter. It was a little on the creepy side, but I'm sure he meant well. We had another patient write a 4 page letter complaining about a doctor. It's just one of those weeks.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

LOL! I hate when people remember me and I have no clue who they are. That is so funny that she wanted your contact info too.