Saturday, September 11, 2010

Nine Years Ago Today

Every year on this date since 2001 I watch TV and I am transfixed by the images of the attack on the World Trade Center. Radical Muslims on suicide missions changed us. I find myself waiting for the next attack, the next horror to be visited on this country that I so love. It changed the way I live my life. I do not like to fly and I avoid huge gatherings. If given tickets to the Superbowl, I would not attend. I find myself thinking that an attack there would be the perfect venue to demoralize us even further. These men believed that by killing innocent Americans their way would be paved to their heaven. Good luck with that. I work on not allowing myself to live in fear and I work on my anger against a religion that mandates wholesale slaughter as a religious right against those who don't believe as they do. We are a nation of differences and as Christians we have our loonies as well. I don't do fanatics of any culture or religion. I do not want the Mosque built near ground Zero. Go Away. If you really really really wanted unity you would go elsewhere and not build your mosque, this shrine that honors those crazy zealots, because that is what it is all about. You would want to take into consideration the pain, suffering, and memories of the 9/11 survivors. That is what a Christian would do.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Pain the New Vital Sign

As nurses we assess patients as they come into the ER. Vital signs, physical evaluation and history of illness are initially done to assess the urgency of the problem. We also assess the pain level the severity in which is measured on a scale from one to ten. Ten is of course the most severe. This is done so that when we administer something for pain after a 30 min. wait we can reassess your response to what we have given you. I have addressed the issue of behavior in the ER but really, if you are coming in complaining of 10/10 pain and you have had it for over a week and have taken NOTHING for it, then don't expect us to really believe you. Especially when you are giggling with your pals while you wait.
When you hit the triage door with a splinter in your finger and you wail around like you got hit by a car we have trouble understanding. Pain is relative to the person who is experiencing it and to his/her personal weenie level. I gave a shot to a 3 year old who never moved and said a mild "ouch" and in the next hour gave a shot to a 30 year old man who screamed like I was yanking his lips over his forehead. It kinda sounded just like this... if you can imagine the voice raising and lowering:ohmygodjesushelpMEEEEEEEEohshitwhatinHELLyougotinthatohJESUSsave MEohohohohohSHIT.
Having experienced pain at different times of my life I want to yell at some of these drama queens(and kings) "you want to talk about pain... I tell you what pain is: Pain is a 9lb+ and a 10lb+ baby coming out of a narrow canal(not so narrow anymore.ha)with heads that feel the size of a cantaloupe WITHOUT ANESTHESIA. So bite me. I am a nurse therefore I am naturally compassionate. NOT. I have to work on it everyday. Each day someone comes and sits in my triage chair with a story and it is usually about pain. Honestly I have to stop myself from comparing their pain with some of the stuff I have been thru or comparing with other patients who live in pain daily without a complaint. Each person deserves to be evaluated by himself without the collective history of previous patients and my own experience. Do not think this gives you a pass however when you tell me that you have lived in severe pain for 2 weeks without A) calling your own MD B) without trying to relieve it yourself with ANYTHING over the counter C)while laughing and yuking it up with your friends D)complaining about your severe pain while putting on your mascara in the triage chair telling me that you been crying for days with the agony and lastly don't think I will let you pass without question when you complain of 10/10 pain while telling me you have to be seen right away because you have a date.