Things I’ve Learned: Pediatric Surgeons, Surgery and the Like.

These are my favorite of the “themed” posts I write. It never amazes me the things I learn when I’m out and how it annoys me or makes me laugh. I understand, I might be the only one who laughs. But if you can’t laugh at yourself, what can you laugh at? There’s really no real introduction I can write about this, so I’ll just dive right in.

1) Residents are young and possibly lack any sense. In waiting for our son’s surgeon, a resident and a high school student interested in medicine appears telling us he was a resident and our surgeon would be right with us but he wanted to come in and check our son. He seemed very new to this, and I wouldn’t have cared so much if he didn’t enter the room saying what he said. As he appeared, smug smirk and all he greets us by saying “So is this George? Is he still peeing downwards?”. I looked at my husband, non-verbally asking permission to make a snide comment back or to actually punch him. Note to doctors: it’s generally not a great idea to mock a 7-month-old baby about his birth defect in front of parents who are nervous about the whole thing. Humor is appreciated; unintended mockery is generally neither appreciated or acceptable in any situation. I have a great sense of humor, I enjoy a good joke. That wasn’t funny; it was mildly insulting. It wasn’t just the comment, obviously we wouldn’t be there if the problem magically fixed itself. Don’t be an idiot resident, and I think you’ll go far. Also, developing a personality and better bedside manner would probably help further your career.

2) Compound Centers. I live in Massachusetts, home of the New England Compounding Center. In case you don’t watch the news, that’s the pharmacy that dispensed Meningitis to almost thousands of people becoming sick and several of them dying. Our baby needed a prescription and I nodded and waited for the paper to head to my pharmacy to fill it. No, you can’t do that. It needed to be filled at a compounding facility, which thankfully was right next to my husband’s work. However, the minute that I heard the words “Compound Facility”, I looked at the nurse as if she was trying to kill my child. Though I’m not entirely sure the difference between a regular pharmacy and a compounding one, aside from the meningitis and obscene cost of prescriptions without being covered by insurance.

3) My maturity level is shaky. I learned a hard lesson yesterday, that my brain sometimes has not left high school. Maybe it’s a result of my love of Penny Arcade, and finding their “doodle” contest very hilarious. Phallic jokes are hilarious, and I laugh every time. I also apparently laugh when there are pictures drawn of them in a hilarious manner. Maybe it was the nerves, I’m definitely a person who laughs at things instead of the proper emotion as a result of a defense mechanism. So when the doctor proceeded to draw diagrams of the surgery, something inside my head reminded me not to laugh, though I can’t promise I didn’t snicker a little. It’s not funny, but I probably could have done without the diagrams.

The most important lesson I learned yesterday was that I can do this. I have it in me to find the positives and ignore the negatives and I know I’ll need help, but I have an awesome husband to go through this with me and we have an amazing family that will stand by us and support us. People are social beings, and we need people to stand by us during our difficult times.

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