Thursday, November 19, 2015

This is why my soul has been sucked out

I discharged one frequent flyer drunk at 6 PM, only to have him return at 10:35.  He joined my other two frequent flyer drunks in my corner of Drunk and Pissy land, where the floor is your toilet, your needs supersede anyone else's, and you have a constitutional right to as many turkey sandwiches as you desire.

My reward was  earning a coveted "Drunk and Disorderly Hat Trick" for the evening.
Which does not include any sort of prize.

But he has 65 visits for the year, each and every one of them via the Big White Limo with the Pretty Flashy-Light Thingies.

Guess who pays?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Blogiversary, where has the time gone?

8 years.  Can't believe it.  Although I have been an inconsistent blogger at best.

Mostly I just howl at the moon.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Dear Attention Seeking "insincere detox" person….

I get that you have a problem.  I'm sorry for that, and I do want you to get the help you need.

You have been through this before, as evidenced by the detox playbook you seem to be using.
But the ER is just not the place for you to expect that all of your dreams will come true, and I'm just too damned busy right now to deal with your toxic lack of coping skills.

You arrived around noon-time, having consumed your breakfast beer and wine.  And you reek of pot.

Because you also claimed to be suicidal,  you ensured that you will be immediately whisked into a room, changed into paper safety jammies, your belongings locked up,  and one-to-one or video surveillance 100% of the time.  In record time your drug and alcohol (and pregnancy test because you are a female of child bearing age) urine and blood tests are collected.  By all means let me get the concierge to get started on your list of demands urgent life saving interventions needs right away:

-your lunch order,  turkey sandwich with mayo, lettuce and tomato on whole wheat, with french fries, fruit, and ice cream for dessert.  Per your specifications.
-endless ginger ale with "just a little ice", because you are just so parched
-the use of your cell phone (always at the discretion of your nurse….me. I have other patients, but more on that shortly)
-ativan, ativan, ativan for your "shakes", although you seem to forget that we have a video camera on at all times, and your "shakes" are not in evidence until someone walks into the room.
-extra pillows and warm blankets
-the TV remote
-the lights dimmed
-taking your order at 3 PM for supper, even though you have just eaten lunch
-asking for all of your daily scheduled meds because "you didn't have time to take them before you came"
-repeated requests to see the doctor, for your headache, finger boo-boo, sore back.
-repeated requests to see the social worker (who won't even look at you until your blood alcohol is at the required level and not one minute before.  Also there are four people ahead of you, it will be 6 hours at least)
-repeated requests to see the nurse for updates on lab results and to use your cell phone
-request for another pair of slippers
-request to take a shower
-asking for a Nicoderm patch.
-another vomit bag because "I threw up in this one".  Um, nope, that's spit.  Spitting into a bag does not equal vomit.  Vomit would have also included the groceries you just threw down your neck 40 minutes ago
-puzzled, then pissed because I removed the food from your room because now you claim to be nauseous
-asking yet again to see the social worker sooner rather than later because you have "been through this before, and I would really like to be cleared here and admitted to the Psych Unit before bed time"

This has been in the last 2 hours.  Thankfully I have a nursing assistant who can deflect some of these demands  requests, although she makes me aware of each and everyone.  She is a lovely woman, but the way, not that you care, but know that her eyes are rolling each time you push your buzzer.  Every 30 seconds.

You are not my only drunk today, dear.  I have two others who are fortunately sleeping it off before they get their turkey sandwich and are ready to head back to the bar since they are not suicidal and don't want detox.  Again.  And, since this is not a psych holding unit but an emergency department, I have medical patients who need me too.

I know you don't give a rat's ass, but you self-centered nonsense has sucked my attention away from a woman having a miscarriage of twins.  She chose none of that, and she deserved some of my empathy today, I obviously had a surplus since you killed all I had in reserve for you.

I'll end by being classy, maybe something you could work on for your next visit to the Detox Hotel.


Sunday, November 8, 2015

You're welcome

You're welcome…..

newish ER nurse who took over my assignment, all except for the transfer to Big City Trauma Center.  That one I kept.   I saw the petrified look in your eye because my patient, pending transfer to Big Trauma Center who rolled in 30 minutes before the end of my shift, was a shit show.

Because we both know I can never just walk away from that.


Instead of treating it like a learning experience, maybe checking to see what you could do for me, pull meds, make a phone call… sat on your ass and ate the hamburger you bought on the way in while I, who did not get dinner, ran around like a chicken with my head cut off.  Then I left work 90 minutes after my shift ended, having packed off said shit-show and given report to the transfer medics and transfer hospital.

Lazy, lazy, lazy.

I will not be quick to help you out with any future shit shows.  Curtain closed.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Deary me

One of the best things about being an elderly (age-wise only) clinical ER nurse is that I can get away with saying shit I never could at a younger age.    I can pretty much tack on a  "dear", "honey", or "sweetie" at the end of any sentence and, like magic, the sting is removed from any admonishment, rebuke, or refusal.

Seriously.  Like magic, I tell you.

I have further discovered that the use of "dear", et al makes it possible to drastically cut down on the amount of spin required for any given situation.  Particularly when accompanied by a pat on the hand, a squeeze of the toes beneath the blanket, and a regretful tone for added effect.

 "I need juice and a turkey sandwich and a charger for my iPhone".
 "Can I have a taxi voucher?"
"I'm not getting a narcotic prescription???"

"not just now, dear"
"I'm afraid not, dear"
"not today, dear"

Sometimes a well placed "young man/woman" (I refuse to use the term lady, because I haven't met one in about 10 years) serves to remind the rude ones that I am a card carrying member of AARP and deserve respect.  It mostly works.

My ace in the hole?  "I'm sure your mother would be very disappointed in your rude behavior", along with the delivery of a perfectly executed fish-eyed stare over the top of my glasses.

I'm so intimidating.