Saturday, October 11, 2008

"Oh, is this the fibroid?"

Well, well...take a look at the quote above. Picture the scene. Lovely, caring and chatty admitting clerk walks me up to the ward (with my dear husband). Since it's 6:30am, there are no nurses to be found. A nurse comes out of a room and wanders down the hall (was she sleeping in there, I wonder?)

The clerk says, "I have a new patient for you," and the nurse replies, without looking at me..."Oh, is this the fibroid?"

The clerk pointedly answers, "Her name is Jacqueline Munro, and she's here to have an embolization this morning."

Rather than making me upset, this dehumanizing language almost almost made me snort with laughter. Three thoughts instantly came to mind: 1. Sarah Palin (queen of the stupid comment). 2. If only I was a cartoonist, then I could have done this comment justice. 3. Who teaches these young nurses anyway? Empowering and respectful language is paramount, girls!

Thankfully, shift change comes quickly, and my pregnant (of course!) day nurse K was lovely!

Thoughts and questions about my hospital experience...

1. Everyone should have a doula...for anything done in hospital. At least the doula would make everyone introduce themselves!
2. Catheters without an epidural are not fun...not exactly painful...but very unpleasant.
3. Why are patients blamed for the nurse's inability to successfully insert an IV on the first try? "You mustn't have been drinking enough water." (Nope...I'm floating in the stuff!)
4. Nice art work in the recovery area at UBC...very nice... (Okay...I must be drugged) The Fellow says I have more fibroids than she could count (I love being unique).
5. Why did the anesthetist play Bob Dylan's Blowing in the Wind? And why do the nurses and resident think that it's Willie Nelson (They're TOO TOO young to be working on my body!)
6. Why did everyone start talking about Halloween while I was being given a cocktail of conscious sedation drugs?
7. I want to thank the porter for singing me lullabies while in the elevator.
8. I'm not accustomed to having a heartrate of 44 (Is this the effect of fentanyl or morphine? Yikes!) The talk of atropine doesn't thrill me.
9. The bed was quite comfy.
10. Wherever I go...even when I'm totally drugged...people tell me their birth stories in great detail, and want to know if I approve of their doctor/midwife/OB/hospital choice. I just want to sleep!
11. Who added those sickening bumps to 16th Avenue?
12. Why don't I remember seeing the specialist whose name is on all my prescriptions? Was he hiding or did the fentanyl make me forget?

One client said she's happy that I'm going through all this...at least I'll have the hospital experience fresh in my mind. Well, I can tell you that I can now relate to having narcotics (I stopped taking them asap), that I understand the agony of post-surgical gas pains and nausea (someone needs to warn you about this BEFORE the cesarean), that I know the feeling of a digestive system that isn't quite ready to start working again (also - thoroughly unpleasant), and that I now feel like I'm 10 weeks pregnant (and waiting for the morning sickness to go away).

But, I can also say I'm in awe of the fact that my hemorrhaging stopped as soon as I was in recovery. I'm happy about that...but still waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Each day, a little bit better. Those healthy wishes from friends, family, clients and blog readers really do help. Thanks!

p.s. The photo is of a fibroid knitted by a medical student...

- Jacquie Munro, Vancouver Doula

2 comments:

MamaVee said...

I hope you have a very speedy recovery! That's the happiest looking fibroid I've ever seen!

Tara said...

Now I've seen a knitted fibroid and a knitted uterus (from my prenatal class).

My knitting expertise only extends as far as scarves.

Hope you're recovering nicely.