Friday, June 5, 2015

Well That Was An Eye Opener!….continued…again…and again

 

 

Image result for hospital general regional de leon

Back in Leon

 

I had to check in to the hospital in Leon at 1:00 PM the day before the operation, which was scheduled for 8:00 AM the following morning. We arrived about 12:30 PM and as directed, we went to the second floor and explained our situation at the security desk. No one seemed to be expecting us so a nurse was asked to go and find out what was up. When she returned she told us that we were supposed to be on the third floor. I was pleased about this because, even though beggars can’t be choosers, the idea of a staying in the maternity ward did not seem very appealing.

On the third floor we showed our papers to the security guard and were ushered to the nurses station in the surgical ward. After taking my name and checking on my scheduled surgery the nurse asked me to wait outside in the hall until my name was called. Five hours later that had still not happened. Finally about 6:00 PM I was asked to return to the second floor where they would have a bed for me. In the maternity ward.

 

 

So many babies……all crying

 

Once we reached the Maternity Ward Todd had to leave, no men allowed, and I was taken to a small examination room where I was asked about a million questions. The answers to all these questions should have been in my file as I had gone over all of them with La Doctora, but I patiently answered them all again while thinking to myself, “don’t these people talk to each other?”.

After the barrage of questions ended I was given a hospital robe and relieved of all my clothes, toiletries and jewelry. Well all but my wedding ring, which they had to cut off as the knuckle on my left hand is swollen due to arthritis. Much to my relief I was taken to a small room with four beds and not one of the ones like in the photo above.

The room was small, low ceilinged, with four uncovered florescent lights, one above each bed. There was no fan in the room and the temperature had to be above 30 degrees Centigrade. The other three occupants of the room were laying there sweating and trying to fan themselves with what ever they could find. Luckily I had the forethought to bring a hand fan, which was returned to me with all my other belongings in a big plastic bag which I immediately upended into the bag I had brought with me. ????

Now began the longest night of my life. Although I had slept very little the previous two nights I suspected that sleep would elude me again since I was in the midst of about a hundred crying babies. I asked a nurse if it would be possible to have something to help me sleep. Her response was “ no hay”, “we don’t have anything”. Lovely. By now it was about 8:00 PM and I read (thank goodness for my Kindle) for about an hour until the first of a long line of interns came to chat with me.

There were two of them, a young man and woman. He wanted to practice his English, which was so bad that I couldn’t understand him and I had to have the young woman ask all the questions in Spanish as well. They were ALL the same questions AGAIN. Now I had my answer, these people did not talk to each other. As they left they turned out the lights, leaving us all with white spots floating in front of our eyes. About 15 minutes later, on went the lights and a nurse came in to hook me up to an IV. On the ceiling were two metal tracks, like you would use for lighting, but with chains hanging from them. The chains would slide along the metal track so the IV could be hung near the bed. Unfortunately it did not actually reach the bed so movement became very limited. She also took the time to ask me all the same questions again, before she left.

The lights went out again with the nurse. After about a half hour respite on came the lights. A new intern had arrived to take blood samples. I told him I had already had MANY blood tests but he said “yes but that was two months ago”. Fine. He had great difficulty finding a vein and by the time he did he was clearly nervous. Rather than change the vials one after the other he just filled up a very large syringe which he then used to fill the vials. However as he turned away to get a vial, he bumped the syringe in my arm jamming it in to the hilt. Ouch. Now he was REALLY nervous and while filling the vials with the larger syringe he managed to splash blood all over the bed. At least he turned out the lights again when he left.

By now it was about 11:00 PM. The lights were off and even most of the babies were quiet. I lay there reading for about an hour and was actually feeling like I might drift off to sleep when on went the lights and another nurse arrived. It was midnight and time for an enema. I kid you not! I was unceremoniously filled up with water and left to waddle down the hall to the bathroom with my butt cheeks clamped together, carrying an IV bag and using a walker.

Of course there were no seats on the toilets and it was the maternity ward, and midnight, so the toilet bowls were all covered in blood. So now I also had to add wet paper towels to my juggling act in order to clean myself up a spot where I could unload all the unwanted water. When I returned to the room, it was relatively quiet and the lights were out. But not for long. Enter the most obnoxious, cocky little twerp I have ever had the misfortune to encounter. I don’t know if he was an intern or a nurse but he wanted one more blood sample (the other arm this time), and although he seemed much more sure of himself than the last one, he left me with an enormous bruise that I still have as a keepsake. Before he left he picked up his clipboard and asked me all the same questions…again.

2:00 AM. On come the lights. The “English speaking” intern is back and he has a friend. The friend had the ubiquitous clipboard and asked all the usual questions. Then they rolled in an ancient machine that looked like something Dr. Frankenstein might have used, with wires hanging all over it, and informed me that they were gong to give me an EKG. I explained that I had already had an EKG and was told “yes, but that was two months ago”. The two interns, who I was now calling Larry and Curly in my head, wired me up to the machine only to discover that there were only three suction adapters and six connectors. They suctioned three to my chest and proceeded to attach the other three to my left breast with about a half a roll of masking tape.

Then after about ten minutes of consulting with each other about how the machine actually worked they got it turned on. It was feeding out the paper but it was blank. Now what? Aha! More masking tape! All we were missing Moe, for a full set of stooges. I had no idea that masking tape sticks so well to skin. Ouch. As they folded up all the wires and connectors  it was approaching 3:00 AM.

This post has turned out to be much longer than I had anticipated so I am going to leave you here and continue one more time.

15 comments:

  1. Maybe writing this is a cathartic exercise for you, but I can't imagine going through this as I've NEVER heard or seen anything like this in my life!

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  2. Neither have I! I guess that's why I felt the need to write about it.

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  5. Oh my word. Bless your heart! I just can't imagine...maybe in a novel that takes place in another era? I'm so sorry. I continue to pray for you.

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    2. Thank you Barbara, I appreciate the prayers. It is indeed an interesting experience.

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  6. But you are handling it all as a trouper -- as I would expect. I am ready for the next episode. You may have the concept for a good television show.

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    1. Hey!! We can call it "Scrubs...Mexico".

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  7. if it wasn't so scary and sad this would be a funny post. Can't wait for part two. Cheers from sunny Vancouver where we are having the best weather ever!

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    1. Actually that will be part five, LOL, it's been a long saga. And you really do have to laugh, it's all too bizarre not to. I have heard how wonderful Spring has been in Vancouver. It is one of the most beautiful cities in the world on a sunny day!

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  8. Wow, your ability to keep your sense of humor is amazing, way to go Shannon! xoxo

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    1. Thanks Nancy. It really is funny in it's own bizarre way.

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  9. Reading the last five posts has been a roller coaster ride. One moment I am tsk-tsking... the next I am laughing...and then I find myself wiping the tears from eyes. We are friends and my heart goes out to you. I wish I could help, but I am in Merida, which is a long way from San Miguel. However, I will be in your city in September and I hope you will be up to a visit. I have to say one last thing... North Vancouver grows girls with lots of gumption. Hang in there Shannon!

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  10. I am glad you enjoyed the "roller coaster rid" Joanna. It is over and I am all the better for the experience! Although there may be some posts to come about radiation or chemo, LOL. I look forward, as always, to seeing you in September.

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