18 Comments

SOMETIMES A GREAT NOTION


“#number 007” kayti sweetland rasmussen

Wouldn’t you know it? I thought the leg surgery last year was the cat’s meow, and would enable me to reengage in all sorts of former activities. Though it was apparently successful, things gradually went wrong during the year and it seemed we were back to square one.

It’s amazing the things the medical profession keeps learning. They soon discovered that the new vein wasn’t as good as they thought and was blocked again in a different place.

I went in for a procedure last week for angioplasty where they were able to open it once more. They don’t call these things “surgery” anymore” as procedure sounds much better.

The group in the radiology room were in high spirits. They had all attended the “Commi-Con” affair in San Jose where people buy, sell and trade comic books. I believe it was started some time ago by Steve Wozniak, the genius who will Steve Jobs, created Apple. I could be wong of course, but I do KNOW for a fact that Wozniak is the sort of person who would do this. During the procedure I asked one of the techs how large his collection was. He said “It depends on how large you think large is. Mine is 21,000 books. The other great conversation was devoted to the rattlesnake bit someone got the day before on top of Mission Peak when putting his hand beside the rock he was sitting on. Naturally the rattlesnake shook hands with him and a helicopter was called to haul him down to civilization. I know for a fact that he was on top of the peak, because I’ve hiked there, and that is where rocks large enough to sit upon are located. Last time I was there an illusive tiny blue butterfly was sunning itself.

Now surely this takes all your concentration away from what is happening to your body, along with the melody playing on the tape, which happened to be “A Horse With No Name”. I’ve always liked that song, though I can’t recall all the words or who did it.

Right after arriving home however, I discovered a large painful area around my middle which was black and blue. Turned out it was a “hematoma” and when I reported it, they sent me immediately to the emergency room where I lounged around in great comfort all day—from noon till eight o’clock, taking cat scans et al and they finally determined that it is resolving itself, so go home with no more worries.

The emergency room is an interesting place. It was Sunday when most people should be out enjoying the sunshine, but there were so many, lying in beds out in the halls, walking around wearing the cool robes which open in the back, visiting, etc. and of course, some who were really sick in the cubicles divided by curtains which can be closed for privacy. A few doctors trying to divide themselves up into many, and many nurses moving from place to place. A busy place indeed.

From the cot that you are placed on after dressing in one of the cool robes, they send you to various places for tests, in my case the room containing the huge cat scan machine. It takes quite awhile after the doctor determines the best way to go, for someone to wheel you down dimly lighted halls, which are vacant on a Sunday. After finding my self parked alongside a lonely wall I was reminded of a favorite trick in the auto repair business of giving someone a “wall job”; by parking your car alongside a wall to take a turn which may take a long while to accomplish.

After my wall job they completed a scan and wheeled me back to my cubicle. We had arrived at noon at the advice of 2 of my doctors, and by now it was mid afternoon with no apparent food or drink in sight. However the woman in the next cubicle was being fed spaghetti and meat sauce which smelled delicious to my hungry self. I plaintively begged for a little snack, but they said no food in case you need surgery. I went to sleep to forget the whole thing, and the young doctor came and said they were going to do another scan. Naturally I asked what they had seen that made them think they needed another one. He seemed surprised that I should ask, but I calmly explained that if I were making a dish of food or baking a cake and it didn’t turn out right that I would have to do it again. My cynical thought was CYA which as you may know means “protect yourself in case something goes wrong”. The carpentry and sewing businesses also have a saying: “measure twice, cut once”.

It was, all in all, an enlightening day, showing the dedication of so many in the medical profession, giving immediate care to so many unfortunates. On the other hand, I think if I were a doctor, the emergency room would be a never ending source of interest.

And a note to Mr. Trump, we are getting the same good care as we have had with Obamacare, so he doesn’t need to worry about us.

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18 comments on “SOMETIMES A GREAT NOTION

  1. Dear, oh dear. Kayti. That must have been a day and half. Hospitals are exotic places and those backless gowns are proof of some strange procedures going on. During the years that men were touted to have colonoscopies done those gowns were a horror to put on. The ignobility to then walk the gauntlet past the public while holding the back tightly shut was an experience not many overcame.
    The hunger was almost as bad. The woman eating spaghetti with meat sauce must have been a real torment.
    The hospitals in Australia were asked to tighten the belts too. Years ago, I used to get a nice hot meal. Prime beef sausages and mashed Dutch-cream potatoes with a lime jelly and cream afterwards. That’s all gone now, Kayti. It’s been reduced to a cheese sandwich and no sweets afterwards.
    One is lucky to get out alive.

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    • There was a movie which had Jack Nicholson in one of those hospital gowns trying to save his modesty. I think they do it on purpose to show you who’s boss.
      Dutch-cream potatoes sound heavenly alongside what were probably good sausages.
      The trick is to stay out of the hospitals. My aunt who died at 99, never went to a doctor in her life, though I thought it interesting that her first marriage was to an ambulance driver. But she was very young and it didn’t last long.

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  2. Sorry to hear you’ve had to go through these procedures. Never fun to be in the hospital or ER, but your positive attitude is admirable and inspiring. You’re right to ask questions. Good for you for doing so. When patients participate in their care, outcomes are better. Hope things go smoothly for you here on in.

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  3. One must be wise and of good nature to make such poignant observations under less than ideal circumstances. You bring beauty and inspiration to matters that others might not notice or consider annoying. Thanks Kayti.
    Love
    Steve

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  4. Oh, you’ve had a time of it again! I’ve found the best strategy is to be completely medically uninteresting. And, yes, “procedure” does have a kinder, gentler sound to it than “surgery”. By the way, I’m very pleased with my new hip!

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  5. Glad to know that you are HOME and out of the ER. I look forward to our lunch on Wednesday where I am taking you to a restaurant where you CAN have spaghetti…

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  6. When I had my cataract surgery, I opted for a bit of pre-op medication to “calm the nerves” as they said. The whole thing was so easy that I decided not to have any drugs for the second eye, and it was the right decision. With my mentis relatively alert and composed, I could follow the chatter while I lay about, waiting for whatever was going to happen next. The subject in my operating room was lunch, as the various techs tried to decide between Chinese takeout and pizza.

    Finally, the surgeon said, “Shhhhhhh!!!! She’s awake, and she hasn’t eaten!” I thought that was a compassionate gesture on his part. I asked if I couldn’t have some barbeque rather than Chinese or pizza, and they said, “Sure. Once you’re home.”

    I’m glad you’re home, for sure. Hospitals can be annoying, and a whole list of other adjectives, but they’re useful from time to time. I hope all’s well.

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    • That was thoughtful of the attending physician to let people know you were awake and hungry. It’s alarming when we go through things the first time, and then it becomes ho-hum the next time. The ugly gown puts us all in our “place”; no better or worse than the next bed. I think it’s the dehumanizing aspect of being in hospital that should keep us out of them. I don’t plan to visit again.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. So sorry you have been in the wars again Kayti. However one good thing has come from it, this lovely piece about your “adventures”. Hope you are on the mend now, sending love from across the Pond xxx

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  8. Such sweet greetings from across the pond mean so much to me. Thank you Gill. I seem to be back to whatever was thought to be normal! Still will never walk well, but at least I can put one foot ahead of the other to see what trouble I can get into. ooxx

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  9. I love the title of this piece, Kayti, as well as your calm good nature during a day in the emergency room that would have had many folks climbing the walls, or at least feeling grumpy. I’m also glad you saw a little blue butterfly while sitting on a rock on a mountain peak rather than a rattlesnake.

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  10. Love your attitude and perspective Auntie dear. If only Mr Trump would listen to you a bit more. Love to you!

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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    • We spent the afternoon with a Trump man and I was admirably pleasant.
      Tyler is going to D.C. next week to meet his father, Kate and Bryan. No mention of Jessica going. They are all wearing baseball caps with the Trumpian slogan on. It takes all kinds.

      How was your Mother’s Day? Mine was exceptional. Ty and Jessica and Max came bringing French champagne, English tulips and boxes of pastry. I made a crab quiche. All other systems were go!

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