The Five People You Meet in The ER
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Health and Wellness

The Five People You Meet in The ER

You're Not Dead Yet But You're Getting Close

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The Five People You Meet in The ER
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If you’re anything like me, you may occasionally find yourself in the midst of emergency personnel who harbor the power to either make your blood boil or help you float from cloud to cloud in a morphine haze. If you’re not oh so lucky to share my proclivity for emergency room visits, well then you have likely drifted through life with far less anger than those of us who have experience. When you’re in pain or you can’t seem to breathe, chit chat and waiting around blackens even the kindest hearts. We tear down those who try to help us and melt in the arms of those who take action. For those of you who do not know the ER and its cronies, may this be a word of caution. For those of you who are well versed, don’t worry, you are not alone.

1. The Blood Boiler. After waiting for what seems like forever in a room where everyone thinks their issues are more dire than anyone else's, a young man or woman emerges from those sterile, automatic doors and FINALLY calls your name; but somehow the ER is already straying from your high, Hollywood expectations. No one is stressed. No one is running around covered in blood. In fact, you are the only one who seems to have any stressful feelings about your current condition. Even the tech (with zero REAL medical background) that brought you to the dog eat dog world behind the waiting room doors just stuffed some oxygen in your nose and had the audacity to suggest that the cure for your current condition is likely, “mind over matter,” or rather, all in your head. You think, “where in the holy hell did this guy escape from?!” If you had any energy to muster up an adequate response I presume it would be something like this: “I’m sorry sir, but do you really think I would waste this much money to pretend to be in this much pain?!” The blood boiler: a really great way to get your blood pressure cranked up even higher than it already is.


2. Wanna Be Ryan Gosling. This next guy seems to think that his looks and impressive position as a male nurse should mix a perfect love potion for any and all “ladies in distress” that might fall into his care. He repeats word for word the instructions and suggestions of the doctor, except for the moment when he acts like you won big money on a game show when you answer his question about the color of your mucous. Yeah, sorry bro, if you only had a brain.


3. The Sane in this Insanity. Finally, after waiting and waiting to find some relief, the doctor glides into your room in glittering, white, orthopedic sneakers. They are the light in the darkness, the hope in the agony, but wait, where did they go? In they came practically glowing in splendor only to mutter a few words and disappear as quickly as they arrived. Oh well at least the drugs will be flowing soon.


4. The Savior and The Bore. A specialist appears 15 minutes after the doctor made their heroic interlude and now you feel real elation. This person is going to save you, put you out of your misery, end your long trail of anguish that was certainly not “mind over matter.” The drugs they administer make your heart race and your pain desist. You can finally speak and think clearly but as it turns out this person could not be more bored with yet another patient. There’s no breakthrough moment when they realize they just saved a life like in Grey’s Anatomy. No hugs or high fives, not even a dew drop of conversation. “Whatever,” you think as they leave your room, “ it’s ok, because they really did just save your life.”



5. The “Umm What” Nurse. You’ve got drugs pumping through your veins and the monitor is screaming the “they’re most likely dead” emergency tone because you’re heart rate is blasting at 145 but your nurse giggles and says, “the biggest complaint I get is about these monitors,” as she switches the off button. As the patient, my biggest complaint is that the monitor says I’m going into cardiac arrest and you just turned off my vitals! Then all of a sudden she unhooks you from all the machinery and tells you it’s time to go. You can barely move without passing out but hey, thanks for your help!

The ER is a strange place. Nowhere in your right mind did you plan to spend your hours and dollars in the emergency department on any given day; but what makes it even more surreal is that everyone who works in the ER did plan to spend all day and night there. A life altering day messily unfolded into your lap but no nurse, doctor, or specialist is surprise by the course of your life at this very moment. Everything on their side of the glass is routine and structured but for you, everything is shattering painfully and unexpectedly. The combination of these two extremes can create fire and smoke for us. It can make us feel extreme worry that we are not cared about or anger that those who should care actually do not. It is easy to lose all common, kind hearted sense and some of us turn into raging monsters. As the offspring of a pain management physician, I know that pain and discomfort is the most efficient fuel for bitterness and anger. And though I write this article in jest, I urge all survivors of the ER experience to remember that the actions of the medical professionals are not aimed to harm you or to belittle you. They see people in distress every day and every day they fix them. So next time, once you’ve got your meds and you can calm down a little, remember to thank them for all they have done for you and all they do for the community.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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