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Saturday, October 1, 2016

Night at the ER

This is a harrowing trip we've all made, especially those of us who have chronic diseases and those of us who are seniors, when the old body starts to sputter out. Along with us come the many uninsured, our American poor, who have been given no other option for "healthcare."

I'm still not firing on all cylinders, so just thought I'd post some impressions from my ten hours in the big local teaching hospital ER--and not in a room either, but stashed against the main desk in the traffic flow, a ringside seat I didn't really want. The decibel level of the staff, patients, monitors, and various machinery was excruciating.  No wonder this old lady's BP topped out at 200+
Ten hours in this hellish venue and two bags of IV saline later, my body started to function again (possibly out of fear) so they sent me home--thank God!  My weary husband and I got to admire the gibbous crescent moon rise at 3 a.m. Next time I'll just expire in peace, dignity, and quiet in my own living room, thank-you.
Of course, I know full well that night at a big ER is never good. We have a large nearby city, so on this Sunday evening, we had shackled men in orange suits as well as police of all varieties from county to township, EMT's wheeling in elders and traffic accidents, as well as today's tragic compliment of near OD's.
We also had a full on screaming I'm-tearing-the-walls-down insanity fest, complete with restraints and a host of wide, heavily armed security guys playing WWWF. This completed the usual it's-a-great-day-for-a-motorcycle-ride accidents and weekend warrior bloody injuries inflicted by power tools or he-man games. 
An old person with an intestinal blockage just wasn't that interesting, although the young docs and nurses (mostly) did their best to keep up with the oncoming traffic. Still, there's a power dynamic in such a place that is downright intimidating. Sometimes I felt utterly helpless, like a trapped, tethered animal, injured, exhausted, and at the mercy of people who'd gravitated to that environment precisely because they were born short on the quality.  
A cute episode of Scrubs it was not.

~~Juliet Waldron

Historical and Historical Paranormal

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