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That’s Totes Normal, Right?

Yeah, I know. I’m too old to use “totes” or whatever, but fuck that.

I just did 30 crunches, 40 hip drops, and 30 tabletop crunches + twists. At 1:00 AM. That’s normal, right?

I didn’t hear back from Dottie about when my pool therapy will start, so I need to call UAB on Monday morning. The resident and attending were quite happy that I wanted to do that. Actually, both resident/attending teams were proud of my choice. Yay.

Booyah. I can make doctors happy.

I can piss nurses off really easily, though. Well, one in particular, but she had it coming. She’s always dismissive and semi- or full-on hateful. I don’t like her. (I don’t like most of the nurses on staff there, though.) Monday was apparently an extra bitchy day for her. And I called her on it.

She was checking my BP. She put the wrong sized cuff on my upper left arm. It was having obvious issues reading my pressure. It got up to almost 300. That means it was hurting like a motherfucker. I tried to tell the nurse I was in pain, but, between my already quiet voice & my inability to remember to breathe because it was so painful, my comment went unheard. As it deflated, it gave up on getting a result and threw a typical CO5 error. It had no more air to let out and nurse psychobitch didn’t notice, so I ripped the Velcro open. She turned and started in on me like I was an errant child.

“You should have let it finish.”
“Don’t mess with my machine.”
“You’re being childish.”

Fuck that.

I told her that HAD deflated and that I had tried getting her attention. Her response? A tongue click that was followed by an, “uh-huh. Sure you did.”

Typical dismissive behavior.

I was in pain and pissed off, so I told her she “didn’t have to be a bitch.” Her eyes narrowed before she asked, “What did you say?” I repeated the line. She started in on how I never behave like this and how she didn’t understand why I would say such a thing. I guess the idea that it could be true didn’t occur to her.

I went on to tell her that I didn’t like her dismissive, rude attitude. I also said I didn’t appreciate how unprofessional she is. (This is one of the nurses that, on one of my last visits, was involved in a loud argument with Dottie that I got to listen to for around an hour.) She claimed we’d never had a problem. I may not have complained, but that doesn’t mean she’s always been buddy-buddy with me.

As we argued, she put another ill-fitting cuff on my left arm. This time it was on my forearm. It still wasn’t reading. A nasty 2-3″ band of inflammation, petechia and plain old bruises was forming from the first reading. She tried an even smaller cuff on my right arm.

143/98 or 148/93.

“It’s high” was the next thing to come out of her mouth. This time I clicked my tongue at her. I told her, “Yeah, that happens when you check a blood pressure three times in a row with a bad fitting cuff.”

As she walked me to the exam room, which happened to be the furthest from the nurses’ desk, she muttered, “Seems like it’s you who is being rude.”

I told her that I was being that way for good reason.

About twenty minutes later, the clinic’s nursing supervisor came in and asked what happened. I explained it again. By this time, the band looked really bad. She made a note in my chart about my having issues with the machine & that they would (unfortunately) have to use a tiny cuff on my lower arm from now on. (It worked during my appointment Friday.) Since it’s too small and in the wrong location, it doesn’t read as accurately, but it’s all they can do. (This is the office where no nurse knows how to take a manual pressure.)

Wow. I’ve digressed from my original topic.

My body hurt right after I did the exercise. Now? Not so much.

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Janet Morris

I'm from Huntsville, Alabama. I've got as many college credits as a doctorate candidate, and the GPA of some of them, too. I have a boss by the name of Amy Pond. She's a dachshund. My parents both grew up in Alabama.