I spent a year in the hospital with my middle son February a few years ago. He was admitted for a pesky bacterial infection that just wouldn’t go away. As a result, we spent six quality days together at University Hospital in Syracuse, New York.
The hospital itself was nice enough; the nurses and doctors were professional and tended to my son in a caring and considerate manner. For two days it was, all things considered, a pretty good visit.
Oh, sorry, did I mention that we were there for six days?
The doctor told me that they needed to transfer him off the floor he was on because he was getting better – excellent! His new room was two floors closer to the cafeteria in the hospital (Bonus!). And since I was there for a while with him, I took the stairs up and down a couple of flights just to ‘stay in shape’.
Actually, I was taking the stairs because chances were greatly reduced that I would have an orderly or nurse push a ‘sickie’ into the stairway on a gurney. Having watched “House” for years, I wanted to avoid any patients who might have ‘goo’ oozing from their extremities, head, chest, nose, ears, or eyes. And I really didn’t want to come across anyone spurting ‘bright red liquid’ onto me if I was unlucky enough to be standing nearby. There aren’t many patients ‘spurting’ in the stairway – so, yes thank you, I will take the stairs.
But I digress...
We moved downstairs and met “Max”. Max was 15 years old. He was in the hospital because he fractured his pelvis (broke his butt) snowboarding while doing stunts (being a butt) for friends. Over the four days that Max ‘allowed’ us to stay in HIS room – my love and respect for my children grew exponentially.
The following is an actual exchange from Day 2 of our stay – I am not making ANY of this up:
Max: “Why don’t they ever come when I push the buzzer?”
Mom: “Well Max, you just pressed it a minute ago…”
Max: “But don’t they know I’m in pain? I don’t think they’ve ever had anyone here in as much pain as I am.”
Mom: “I’m sure they’ll be here in a minute.”
Max: “I have to poop. Don’t they know I have to poop?”
Mom: “No, I don’t think they can tell that by the way you pushed the button.” (Mom leaves the room hurriedly to find a nurse so Max can poop.)
Max (moaning loudly now): “Don’t you people know I’m in pain?! None of you care, you don’t care about ME! I have to go to the bathroom.”
Mom (returning with a nurse): “Okay, the nurse is here…”
Nurse: “Okay Max, I’m going to have to get you to sit up now.”
Max: “I can’t sit up, my pelvis is broken!”
Nurse: “Well if you don’t sit up, I can’t get a bed pan under you, and if I don’t get a bed pan under you, you’re not going to like what happens next.”
Max (yelling now): “What are you doing?! The doctor said I must always have a pillow between my groins before I get moved! Are you trying to kill me?!”
Nurse: “He said to put a pillow between your ‘groins’?”
Max: “Yes, he did. Are you stupid?”
Nurse: “I might be. I’m still here…”
The next day Max told his doctor that he should be treated with ‘Medical Steroids’, to which the doctor asked, “But why?”
“Haven’t you heard of medical steroids?” Max asked.
“Why yes, of course I’ve heard of medical steroids, but what I’m wondering is why you would need them for a broken pelvis?” asked the doctor.
“Well, I’m thinking of becoming a doctor myself.” Max answered.
“In what field of medicine would you practice?” asked the doctor.
“I think I want to be a ‘Groinologist’” Max said in reply. “Because after this accident I know all about groins…”
“But you broke your pelvis – wouldn’t you want to be an ‘Orthopedist’?”
“See, that’s why I should be a doctor, because you don’t understand what’s wrong with me”, said Max.
The doctor looked down at his clipboard and said, “Oh, Max, I think I have a pretty good idea.”
So if you, or your loved ones ever injure ‘your groins’ while snowboarding in the Central New York area 10 – 15 years from now, remember to look up “Groinologists” in the local phone book. Max ought to be practicing by then.
As for me, I’ll try to keep my butt intact, thank you.