||[Apr. 29th, 2010|11:10 pm]
I am the ICU screener. This normally means evaluating patients for whether they need the intensive care unit or are stable for the regular floor. For me it becomes a license to roam the hospital trying to fix everything I can.|
I wake up around 8 AM and I drink six shots of espresso. Sometimes I buy two donuts from the street cart.
Usually something happens within the first hours of work. I often drink the coffee cold and the donuts stale. The caffeine and adrenaline send me across the hospital, floor by floor, placing IV lines, talking with patients, visiting the people I took care of for five or ten minutes yesterday and talking about things that are Not Hospital, or talking about things that are hospital and getting them water or mouthwash or an outside line to their son or daughter.
I come home and eat food that is not good for me very late; tonight I'm still waiting for it. Lately I've been taking big doses of B6 and melatonin--I read that they make dreams more vivid, and last night I just remember talking with an Irish girl and we agreed that we loved living in England because it was an island surrounded by angry seas.
I left late tonight; what was to be a quick IV line placement on an intern's patient became the realization that the patient was hours from death, her son unaware. We talked and after the talk I stopped all unnecessary medications, gave her a small amount of morphine and her labored breathing eased, then stopped. I wrote my note and now I'm at home and nine hours from now I'll be back at the hospital.
I've got absolutely no ambition beyond being able to continue what I'm doing now.