The waiting room was empty, and the chart rack was as well. I don't want to curse the rest of the night, but I've gotten Miri's photos reorganized (incidentally, drop me a line if you want a paper one, I have lots) and now I'm settling in to tell you about some of the things I've seen.
Psychiatry was fascinating. I saw K in the support group, who sat and explained to a roomful of recovering alcohol and drug addicts that it was her fault that her boyfriend had sent her to the emergency department. He was drunk - she told them that she'd said it was OK for him to have a beer or two. She had, apparently, walked on the wrong side of him, an indication that she was available - in an attempt to keep his drunk self from stumbling into the road. All of this led to him getting off a couple of good punches, and she reciprocated in self-defense. She's in support group. He's in jail. And it's her fault. She's quite certain of that.
It's a level of self-deception founded in self-disgust that amazed me. Where do you start?
A lot of child and adolescent psychiatry, a lot of ADHD evaluations and a lot of troubled children. Kids shouldn't have to worry about things like drugs and meals and gang violence.
I brought in Wandering Jew cuttings for the cognitive/behavioral therapy group, and they were flabbergasted that someone would bother.
Psychiatry made me sad.
I'm on Surgical Subspecialty now; the other day Dr. A the ENT surgeon let me hold the coblator and take out part of someone's tonsils. It was exhilarating. I spent a week in the opthalmologist's office and actually looked at a lot of retinas, which I could see clearly. I had the good sense to say so if I couldn't see something, and he appreciated that. My skills were improved and I got to watch the ultrasound probe break up and suction out a cataraceous lens before the slow unfolding of an IOL (intraocular lens) implant.
Opthalmologists get to play with lasers and microscopic sutures. There's a lot more to otorhinolaryngology than Ear-nose-throat, but nobody knows that. I've never seen someone remove so much wax in one day.
There's a drunk in the drunk tank at the end of the ER. He tried to tell me why he was drunk, but it didn't make any sense, and I think he only came in for a sandwich. He ordered the nurse to have it for him in less than ten minutes. A screening exam is a screening exam is a screening exam.
My mind and heart are not in my work tonight; when I left home Miri was getting her second dose of Ibuprofen for the 102 temperature she spiked this afternoon (I got out my otoscope and listened to her chest and couldn't find anything), and Monday morning the clinic is closed so that we can go to the funeral mass for the eldest son one of our favourite faculty members. Accidental overdose. I could just cry.
Patients are filtering in; I'll try to save something interesting for later. It feels good to post - I should do it more often, in the bustle of days. It feels good to reflect.