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Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Very Good Day

Today, Mike and I joined my family at the Franklin Institute for the Narnia Exhibit. The ehibit, although smaller than I had hoped, was fun and a good time was had by all. Unfortunately, the museum itself closed shortly after we finished the exhibit and we were unable to see all the Franklin Institute had to offer. Instead, we braved the frigid winds and walked the two blocks to TGI Friday's where we had a fun dinner that showed Mike the family I love and am proud to be a part of...

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Could someone define extravagant? Because I am confused...

So, a week ago I mentioned to Mike that we could ignore Valentines Day because we had only been dating a month and it was a lot of pressure to put on a new relationship. He was appalled that I would suggest such a thing. He mentioned that he was not going to ignore it but hoped I didn't expect anything extravagant. Ok, sounds good. Right? I found a perfect card, made homemade meatballs, and his favorite dessert of pecan pie. Mike started Valentines Day on thursday by sending 2 dozen long stem roses to the office. I was overwhelmed and briefly thought I was behind the eight ball with my efforts but did not want to go overboard. A homemade dinner and dessert takes time, effort, and thought, I was good.

So Mike arrives on Saturday afternoon to find the pecan pie on the table with the card. He paused, seemed upset, and said he didn't get me a card. I replied, yes you did - it came with the roses. That was not good enough apparantly because then he said he had instead gotten me something else and hands me this:

I thanked him appropriately and then told him I was frightened to see what extravagant was if this was not. He laughed... The night went downhill from there. I have fairly severe acid reflux and was taken down flat. I am afraid that our first Valentine's Day was spent with me throwing up and Mike rubbing my back telling me how much he had fallen in love with me. Sunday, I was feeling better and went to Mike's so that he could watch the Nascar race on his 50 inch high def tv while I slept on his couch. Unfortunately, I kept him up all night with continued belly issues of the lower end. As I left in the morning for work, he told me again how much he loved me, had fallen in love with me, and was enjoying himself. I think he has survived the trial by fire...

Today the girls called me to tell me that once again I had something waiting for me in the office. What I found waiting for me was another two dozen roses. Apparantly, the first 2 dozen were not acceptable being 2 roses short and another one being beheaded on the delivery. Mike politely emailed the company and told them he was unhappy. They offered to either refund or resend and since I was not feeling well, he thought they would brighten my day and had them resend new ones. Seriously? This is not extravagant?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A Lovely Suprise

HTL has left for Costa Rica for 2 weeks. This leaves me with the neurotic GSW for 2 weeks, alone. Work is going to be hell with our normal patient load. On a normal day, we (me, GSW, HTL, and LR) see 20 patients in the office, 20 inpatients in the hospital, and (on average) 6 new patient consults. Today, we (just GSW and myself) saw 24 office patients, 27 inpatients, and 22 new patient consults. I did not think the day would ever end.

At lunchtime, I was drowning in the emergency room and recieved a page from my secretary. "You need to come downstairs right NOW". I went down an hour later to find a huge box on my desk. I opened the box to find one dozen multicolor long stem roses, a box of chocolates, and a card that read- "will you be my valentine? All yours; Mike"

I cried like a little school girl and called Mike to tell him how much I loved them and how, without even knowing, he had made an overwhelming day AWESOME.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Beware the Penquins

I am sure that my faithful readers, all 6 of them (I love you guys), have noticed that the majority of my patients are mental midgets and need to be heavily medicated. Penquin lady was no different.

Penquin lady was my new patient for the day. I came in to find my list of office patients on my desk and heavily highlighted. The girls have a meathod. Green for a new patient, blue for an outpatient followup, and yellow for a hospital followup. I discovered today that purple and green means a really CRAZY new patient. Hard to imagine that one would be able to ascertain that the new patient was crazy by just speaking to her on the phone but they had. AND her daughter called the office to warn us about her.

Let me tell you, my friends, their assessment was not wrong. This woman was certifiable. The reason she came in to see the pulmonologists- TO BE EVALUATED FOR INHALING PENGUIN POOP. Yes, readers, you read that correctly penguin poop... while on vacation in Antarctica, she tripped and fell face first into penguin poop. She has a legitimate concern, bird feces when inhaled can translate into histoplasmosis. It is the tale she told that confirmed her mental instability.

I am not making this up, you can't. APPARANTLY, the patients tall thin stature was threatening for the penguins. (They are short, fat birds after all). She chose to wear a red sweater to the penguin area and that angered the penguins and they pushed her down. Yup, they pushed her down. She proceed to tell me that she intimidates all birds and is often attacked, EVEN when driving.

We ordered the appropriate tests to rule out histoplasmosis and offered her the name of a psychiatrist to help her come to terms with the fact that birds are so threatened by her... Seriously people, I had to walk out of the exam room 4 times, feigning being paged, to keep from laughing out loud in her face...

When I IM'd Mike about her, his response was Beware the Penguins- Dooby Dooby Doo, from one of my favorite bud lite commercials.

A No Good, Very Bad Day

Yesterday started like most days, an irritating drive in to work, a long list of patients, irritable doctors, and a very tired me. Mike and I had talked late into the night, about nothing at all but neither wanted to hang up the phone until exhaustion took over for both of us.

As I pulled up my hospital list, a name jumped out at me. A young patient that I have followed in the outpatient setting had been admitted to the Intensive Care Unit. She had seen us for a benign lung nodule but had a long history of breast cancer and had been struggling of late with multiple health issues. The last time I saw her, she seemed to have plateaued and was beginning to find her way with the new infirmities. But now, here she was.

It became clear, quickly, once I saw her and reveiewed the chart that my friend was not long for this world. The cancer treatments had erroded her bowel and her body was falling apart from the inside out. She was quickly failing and no matter the intervention, her blood pressure remained in the toilet and she was requiring a machine to breathe. Her loving family surrounded her bedside. Discussions of surgery danced in the air but it was clear what the outcome would be regardless of the intervention. As I sat down with her family to discuss what would be our recommendations, my heart broke. This patient and I have had a connection because of similiar ages and angsts; but also because of her placement in her family of 8. She is the youngest of the three girls and her family makeup is the same as mine with the oldest a boy followed by three girls and then two younger boys. And now, I was recommending the withdrawl of life support and the addition of morphine to make her comfortable. At the family's request, I was at the bedside as she passed away and for the first time in 17 years, said the rosary.

I went back to the office and put my head down on the desk and cried. And later in the morning when Mike instant messaged me, I told him about my morning. He was good, he didn't ignore the uncomfortableness of the situation. Instead, he asked about my patient and her family and me. When I saw him last night, he said nothing about it but wrapped me in those big arms of his and held me as I became ugly, sniveling, snotty, and blotchy doing the ugly cry...

So it was a no good, very bad day that might have made me move to Australia that turned into a wonderful evening of discovering that this wonderful man is as mad about me as I am about him. And once again, it was 1:30 am as I was heading to bed because neither one of us wanted to acknowledge the time that would make Mike head home. I am exhausted today but for some reason I can't erase this Cheshire Cat grin from my face...