Thursday, April 06, 2006

The Spanish Inquistion is Alive

Saying for the Day: Suffering builds character and your character needs building.

For those of you who wonder what happened to the Spanish Inquisition let me assure you that it is alive and well.
You know the Spanish Inquisition where they tortured you in order to save you. It still exists but now they call it an Emergency Room.
Not too long ago now my son delivered me into the hands of the Inquisitors.
I fell on a parking lot and hurt both legs. Son and wife got me into the van and to the Emergency Room. The pain was horrible.
At the emergency room the nurse on duty came out with a wheel chair designed to inflict maximum pain. It was old. It was rickety. It forced your body into a position where the legs would hurt even more. They wrenched me from the safety of the van into the wicked thing . This immediately increased my pain two fold.
I was wheeled into the outer chamber. The nurse said I should sit there until I was interviewed. Then she vanished.
I sat there for an hour with the pain increasing. Twice my wife tried to register me to start the process but was told that nothing could be done until the nurse interviewed me.
In the little cell where the interview was to take place there was no nurse.
Finally as my moans began to reach ear splitting level the head inquisitor or maybe a flunky showed up. I was wheeled into the cell and it began.
Was she concerned about my pain? No!! She wanted my life history which ended with the neat question. “Do you now have cancer?” I wanted to scream. “Lady I’m in pain ! What’s with the stupid questions”. But I didn’t. I wouldn’t give them the satisfaction.
Now she got to my pain. She wanted me to rate it from 1 to 10. How do you do that? If 10 is having both legs cut off by a jig saw while an elephant sat on your lap then it wasn’t a ten. So I decided on 7. That probably was a mistake . If I had said ten they might have helped me faster.
She wheeled me make back into the outer chamber and took her notes from the inquisition to the registration desk. Now I can register.
After registering which is mostly about how I am going to pay them for inflicting this pain they roll me back into the main chamber.
I’m told to sit there until a cubicle is open. Darn. I didn’t bring a cubicle opener.
An hour and a half go by. People who don’t seem to be in pain and can even walk are taken care of. I don’t think they are real patients. They are just to add to the pain.
Finally a cubicle opens. The nurse hauls the wheel chair to next torture level. Now I have to stand on those legs screaming in pain to get onto a table with wheels. First , however, I have to go through the humiliation of dropping my pants while two nurses watch. You of course can not examine knees through a pair of pants.
Then they lift me to the table. At this point my lungs begin to shut down. They see this and get me oxygen. You can not torture the victim if he passes out.
Now the pain increases because the legs which had begun to stiffen in a bent position are now stretched straight out. Now they pretend to be concerned and bring me something for the pain. It does nothing. Nothing at all!
“The Doctor ( Master Inquisitor ) will see you shortly .” That’s what I’m told. When a nurse tells you that it means “ In this century”. So I sit and wait, and wait, and wait. I begin to think I have been forgotten . Just left to die from the pain. There is no clock. I think I’ve been there for hours , perhaps days. No nurse checks. I could be dead.
This is too long for one post so I’ll finish it tomorrow.

8050 spins without a prize. Old Hapless thinks his bad luck is catching. If he cheers for a team then it loses. He is a Lion and Packer fan and look where they ended up. The lady he thought should win got eliminated last night on American Idol. He cheered for the lady pastor on Deal or no Deal and she ended up with $5.00. The local football team went undefeated when he wasn't paying attention but as soon as he started to cheer for them they lost. If you want a team to win get Old Hapless to cheer for the other side.
Well Uncle Wiggly lovers if Old Hapless doesn't cheer for somebody that wins and thus get so excited he can't blog. We will be back tomorrow with another dull chapter of " As the World Spins'.

Just a note that I am sure my friend Lauries emergency room is far better than the one described above. I did a lot more walking today, some without the walker. Betty moved the Christmas ornaments from the lawn to the attic and then worked on a mine for the HO layout.
She made a fancy french toast for breakfast complete with peaches . It was very different. I am trying to get a hold of somebody from the museum board so I can offer them a garden railroad set up. Well I need a breathing treatment.


Blogger Chana said...

It sounds like a horrible ordeal. Up here, in Canada, we are having much trouble with our health care system. The waits in the emergency room average around 5-6 hrs (Alberta) to be seen. These are not waiting times for 'lesser emergencies' and such less but for more serious conditions/accidents. I once had to wait for 2 hrs even though i was taken in by ambulance and i was a priority. The medics had to stay with me to provide medical assistance until a nurse could take over. We have a bad problem here. Not only waiting times but a serious shortage of beds and overworked staff (which sucks because when you need their compassion the most, they are burned right out).

5:29 AM  
Blogger Laurie said...

chana is right about Canada - which is why here in the Detroit area, we see a lot of Canadian nurses coming over here to work.

Anyway, sorry that you had such a horrible experience - you most definitely would not have been treated that way in my ER! You may have waited, but your pain would have been addressed fairly quickly. Next time, tell them that you are having trouble breathing and/or a little chest pain and see how fast they take care of you... (shhh, you didn't hear that from me!)

And I believe that Hapless is bound to win something someday!

6:14 AM  
Blogger Mimi said...

Oh that sounds horrible! I have noticed they don't have clocks anywhere around where they make you wait. Gee, I wonder why?! And that 1-10 pain scale is kinda ridiculous too. I hate that question, like you, I always give the wrong answer apparently. So is this fall why you are currently in your chair? Are you gonna be back on your feet again sometime?

6:57 AM  
Blogger Leon said...

What a long post! Anyway, glad you survived the Inquistion.

8:00 AM  
Blogger Lori's Minute said...

This sounds familar to me....hmmmmm...oh I know, when I was in LABOR! Nobody seemed to care I was in pain. They said they would give me something but it took forever and then when it finally was administered, it did not work.

Notice how all my comments are about me? Sorry about that, we were talking about you...sorry you had a hard time in the ER. How dare the nurses ask you those questions!

8:09 AM  
Blogger Catch said...

the medical profession are so cold anymore...its like your just a number....they may have advanced in curing illnesses but they have lost something along the way. I think its the same everywhere. when they ask about the pain ratio on a 1-10 scale the best thing to do is say its a 12. That may get you a 10 dollar tylenol.

8:17 AM  
Anonymous TC said...

But did you get the thumbscrews?

That would have made you forget all about your legs!

9:17 AM  
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2:20 PM  
Blogger Pennie said...

Hospitals have there own time table.

Love Pennie

8:43 PM  
Blogger Jod{i} said...

Ugh Healthcare, it is an incredible exercise in patience I tell you. I work in a non profit agency and man o man could we just make it more difficult???
Thanks for the pop over at Looking..
And I totally agree with your comment. I dont really feel that way, I adore the kids..and I deal with their aging(notice I didnt say mine) with humor, maybe a bit sarcastic...But life can be just too serious.
Laughing about things, makes me hold the memory closer.


Love your writing!

3:20 PM  

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