In August of 1957, American Bandstand went from being a small, local show to national prominence on the ABC network.
My mother was seventeen years old.
My dad was nineteen and stationed in Hawaii with the Navy.
I was three weeks old.
American Bandstand + Rock and Roll + teen-aged parents = rock and roll Me! How could I have been anything else?
My destiny was sealed at the genetic molecular level.
I turned fifty this weekend.
It didn’t seem like a big deal, so I didn’t ask for the day off.
I spent the entire shift feeling sorry for myself.
When I had the time…
My shift began at 2300 hours. In two hours we had signed in nineteen people, five arriving by ambulance. Now for some ER folks, that is just a drop in the proverbial bucket. For us it was a big slam.
Constipated kids. Febrile kids. Septicemia. Abrasions. Fractures. Chest pain. Abdominal pain.
And the ubiquitous chief complaint of “weakness”. I hate weakness. Nine times out of ten if you are over the age of seventy and you are weak, you are septic. I hate septic.
Then came the most interesting, uh….group.
HIPPA is such a, well, limiting factor when describing one’s duties in the world of emergency care. To protect confidentiality I shall simply mention a few concepts/descriptions/words and let you put them together in a story. Whatever you come up with will not match the actual scenario, trust me.
Multiple individuals. Female reproductive organs. Vomiting. Disinfectant solution. Pain. Giggles. Heat. Mucous membranes. Spacey. Family members. Heart stopping. Rapid speech. Medication. Something in the throat. X-rays. Breakfast food. Joint (as in “don’t bogart that…”).
I didn’t know whether to laugh hysterically or cry.
The shift ended with six patients coming during the final hour, three by ambulance. The perfect ending to the “perfect” night, and only the beginning of my birthday “adventure”.
I arrive home to find a pretty birthday card from my husband and a made-from-scratch cake made by my daughter.
I was feeling better already!
Later in the morning, my son had some information. Apparently my husband was going to purchase an iPhone for me! I’m an Apple fanatic and this would have been fantastic! I’d have that iPhone right now, except…
My son talked him out of it!!!!
Something about extra money every month, battery life and never get the first release of any new product until they work-out-the-bugs.
Yadda, yadda, yadda.
My son is lucky he isn’t a soprano this morning and I mean the singer, not Tony.
I slept the rest of my day and treated myself to a Caramel Frappucino with whip at Starbucks on my way back into work last night.
With an add-shot.
My co-workers put on a pot luck for my birthday and another co-worker’s return from leave. We both had toy tiaras as it was our “special” day. I put mine on and went in to see the two pediatric patients, then I removed it.
It is hard to demand professional respect in a plastic tiara.
Later, when the department was empty I put my tiara back on and practiced my Miss America walk around the station.
Just having a little fun.
Two patients arrived, were triaged and treated.
I was still wearing the tiara!
Retroactive embarrassment. The worst kind!
That’s what I get for not acting my age!
I do believe that this will win an award as the most inane Grand Rounds post of all time. I could have written any number of things, but Vitus wanted Drama! Action! Humor! as the theme this week.
This should fit the bill. I ran all night = action. I didn’t get my iPhone = major drama. And female reproduction and disinfectant = humor. I even added pathos and embarrassment!
Do I get extra credit?