Archive for May, 2009

Welcome to my pity party

My bloggless month of April crescendoed with the acquisition of a rather fastidious GI virus that then resulted in an impressive fecal meltdown and, subsequently, one work day spent conducting the business of surgical residency with an IV in my right upper arm, IV fluid running through me, followed by several more nauseated, bloated work days wishing someone would follow their “you don’t look so good” with a “you should maybe go home and get some rest.” It was a shitty way to end a predominantly shitty month spent working entirely too much.1

Spoiler Alert: May’s not turning out much better. (Albeit significantly less “literally” shitty.)

May has found me in Reno where I’m rotating at an affiliate hospital for this month and next. I’ve come to the conclusion that Reno isn’t so much “The Biggest Little City in the World” as it is the Littlest Little City in the World with the Most Stripmalls. I’ve polled the Reno locals (n=4) on what there is to do in this town and have been met with just as many blank stares and one silent nudge in the general direction of Harrah’s. So I’ve revitalized my relationship with my surgical textbooks and renewed my Blockbuster membership. Note: Surprisingly, many patients who’ve suffered TIA’s have CT evidence of stroke and Pineapple Express has its funny bits but is generally shit.

Which leads me to something else that’s shit. Cancer. If last year was The Year of The Wedding2 this year is certainly The Year of Cancer. I’ve already mentioned The Love Muscle’s stomach cancer but The Brit’s aunt was diagnosed with colon cancer, I just got word the other day that one of my aunt’s brother’s has a pancreatic mass, one of the nicest patients I’ve ever treated just got diagnosed with throat cancer, and, also, a wonderful couple The Brit and I know are getting a divorce which isn’t so much literally cancer as it is figuratively Stage IV Marriage Cancer so I’m throwing it in there anyway. It’s my blog.

Things with TLM’s stomach cancer have taken a turn for the worse…its spread throughout his abdomen. This has left us all simultaneously paralyzed and racing against a timer whose countdown is indecipherable. Daily, I find myself trapped in a variation of the same scenario: scrubbing into this case or that, fake smile plastered across my face while pretending to listen to my attending’s monologue about this, that, or how fantastic the back yard will be once the hideously expensive 40 ft pool is finished and the imported palm trees have been planted…all the while resisting the temptation to make a run for the Reno airport and hop on the next plane to Portland (but not before pelleting my attending with my chlorhexidine soaked scrub brush and telling him/her what they can do with their imported fucking palm trees). (Hypothetically, of course.)

I warned you.

1. The pun wasn’t intended but it did work out rather nicely.
2.  Not only did The Brit and I get married but so did, like, a billion of our friends.



The madness featured here is mine and mine alone. It does not, in any way, reflect the madness of my employers, colleagues, patients, nutty family, or my colorful friends. The privacy of my employers, colleagues, patients, nutty family and colorful friends is sacred & deeply respected, so no names. All words Copyright © la cubana gringa, no method, just madness 2006-2010. All comments © their authors. Don't steal; it's not nice. (And my Grandfather knows people.)

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