Monday, February 28, 2005
I was doing some cleaning up when a jaded Dorothy Perkins bag dropped to the floor. The bag, contained a squeegee material. Inside, a maroon silk saree greeted me. The colour set into a more purplish hue when I finally retrieved it out into proper room lights.
Deepa, the only other female anaesthetist in the department gave me this when she came back from her sister’s wedding. Not knowing where her hometown in India was, the whole department was shaken into a fiasco to locate her just in case the Tsunami got to her area as well. We were delighted when she came back in one piece.
One of the many things my Cik T taught me was to give somebody, something you would like to have it yourself. If you have a black and a white and you like the white one, give the white away.
Do not however make it overly obvious that the one you gave away was the one you overly desire. You might face a situation whereby a white thing is shoved back and forth between two people as guilt consume both parties.
Having said that, the reaction from the receiving end is still unpredictable. Some might not like the present and pretend that it's just what they've been wishing for because it's the thoughts that count at the end of the day, so they say.
Some might get the very present to die for, but behave in utmost shadiness for God knows what reason later on, which boggles one's mind as to what kind of cognitive function level these people are operating on.
Ungrateful springs to mind.
Immature popped and bled in my mind.
Despite all that, which the latter has only happened once, I still exercise the tenets of gift giving.
Deepa is taking the first plunge at FRCA exam which is tomorrow. OK ..OK ..She is the braver one between us. So the reunion with this saree has hypothetically saved me an awkward moment in two days time for completely forgetting her exam.
I have sms her all the luck in the world and all my prayers for you. Break a leg girl!
I’ll break mine in April. Damn it’s March already. Lights out for now.
Mr George Busari
Africa Home Camp,
This letter was borne out of my sincere desire to establish business/mutual relationship with you.My name is Mr. Mr George Busari, the son of Chief Bature Busari (the formal deputy minister of finance under the ousted civilian government) who was killed and mutilated by the military junta led by Major, Paul Koroma after over-throwing the elected government of President Tijan Kabba. Though,I do not know to what extent you are familiar with events and disturbances In Sierra Leone but the pressure of war drove me and my mother out of Sierra-Leone into exile in London where we have been living under political asylum for 3years.Sadly, my mother died of cancer 3 months ago and was buried in London. >Prior to her death, she handed me over a certificate meant for a secret deposit which my father made in a security company in abroad, the Deposit that worth US$25,000,000.00 (twenty-five million united states dollars only) was money paid to his corporation by its overseas company in the heat of the conflict. He made this savings on his name with the hope of converting it to his personal use, at the end of the war; but was killed when the conflict intensified as a result of his opposition to the rebel forces. I have contacted the security company to confirm the deposit and establish owner hip. Due to the death of my mother and the return of peace in Sierra-Leone,I ave decided to solicit for the participation of an honest and trust worthy person or company that will assist in the transfer and business re-investment of the money. I can not do it alone due to my present social status and total ignorance of the business world. You will be given a negotiable percentage at the end of the transaction.If you are interested in the above proposal, contact me immediately through this e-mail address for more details. You must maintain absolute confidentiality to ensure success. Please, indicateyour your interest so that I can give you the contact of the company and also give you the certificate of depositor. send your personal Telphone /Fax number. when replying.I will let you have my number as soon as you are ready to help me.
Mr George Busari
Yes Mr Busari,
my name Diana Spencer and if you don't mind, I will come and haunt you until you cry like a little boy. I will wax your whole body and tie you up to a tree and sprinkle a mutated looking ants which will bite you all over and you die looking like a Michellin man.
Sincere my foot lah. Pathetic? People using other people's vulnerability and naivety for money. It sickens me right down to my rectum. This kind of scam comes in all sorts of packaging. The last time something like this came through, I played along to the point where they were going to send the money and demanded £12,000. I said just deduct it from the 'reward' I am getting for being very kind to help. They were livid! Hahahahahhahaha.
I am now not using my hotmail account anymore.
But honestly, what a nasty piece of shit, I mean work. (how do people do that strikethrough thingy to make it look cool?)
Right! That’s it. I am not going anywhere near that bed. I‘ve been tossing turning scratching, touching, pulling my hair, imagining I was reading Peck and William pharmacology book but my eyes are like those women in labour. Absolutely Impossible!!
Sleep already lah !!! Grrrrrrr. So this is what it feels like to work night shifts and granted a peaceful quiet night. Ungrateful comes to mind? My guess is it's a combination of depleted melatonin with a touch of caffein intoxication and constant larger than life buzzing in the head. I have just finished reading a blog , recent post on that very subject, relationships, so I blame you, as well.
I don’t have any clever things to say about it, apart from when love comes knocking, it’s normally at the time I least expect. Then later on, the practicality of embarking on a relationship is what paralyses me most. I never get it right.
The fatuity of the subject matter is over exaggerated when one talks outside the time frame of being in one or just about to leave the circumference of one. It hurts like hell. It’s like taking a great big punch in and stall it by absorbing all of that energy into every single bones and joints that you have to as far as the vertebrae and causing some micro disruption to the nerve roots, hence sending shockwave of an electric current to all the muscles in your limbs.
It renders catatonia and intermittent fixation of the fovea to an object possibly least attractive to most people, for very long time as though that is the most interesting thing that’s happening at the time, and this you do to a point you feel locked in and sick to your eyeballs.
You seem to look alive on the outside, your chest moves up and down, you breath in and out, you blink, but in the inside nobody dares talk about the pain until the bleeding tamponades, escape beats from the heart settles and you connect to your expandable self again, just in case you spontaneously combust when you do it at the actual onset time of the insult.
That I suppose is true for any situation which involves a hope being shattered, a dream denied and one’s rights withdrawn. It’s dilapidating to say the least.
I personally see that, when all that happens, I find solitude in the things natural to me. Earlier, the snowflakes which came down like confetti, conjured the most melancholic verse out of my existence. I was tempted to do hourly urine output measurement just in case I was bridging into the red zone of dehydration.
The Indon boyband song was playing in the background and it was all staged as if to sooth the heaving agony that I was feeling at the time. Gwe fikir judulnya itu Berhenti Berharap, bikin perasaan Gwe gedek banget. Of course it didn’t coax any certainty that it will be better the next time.
Rachael, my Filipino single mother to a 12 year old boy, friend, said earlier today, I mean yesterday, aiyo it’s morning already, that maybe because caring as a profession makes us more malleable to the bashing, the battering, the crap, the lies, the made up stories that people give us. So much so you couldn’t see that the person who utters the words of love and affection is actually walking all over you. She does have a point there.
Whatever it is, one shouldn’t love somebody too much for the only being that has the right of that is our Creator. When two people share the love for this one being, they will synchronize everything in their lives all in the name of improving themselves, towards becoming a better person to each other. This I think is the only way that two people who swear love to each other could stay in love till death do them part.
Love after certain age is not going to be fuelled by beauty, smooth skin, firm buttocks, juicy lips and Bambi eyes. All that will be gone and what remains is what makes you stand each other. Good words, tolerance, faith, truth, praises and smiles. I might have left out some other qualities, pardon me but I have been vigil for more than 24 hours and my middle name is khaiessa. I have a strong suspicion that none of these make any sense.
This is so not a good idea to kill insomnia. I now feel like running around naked in the snow and feel completely reborn with ying on my right hand and yang on the other and chi dissipated from my belly button, all over again.
I have so much energy I can impress Miss Nana Tilaka with 1500m round the track so she can stop calling me siput,. (A joke only a TKCian will understand). Something is wrong, I feel a sudden rush. Unbreak my heart, please.
p/s: I have so much things to write but I don’t want to tarnish the image of doctors elsewhere in the world (god bless you all) being busy busy no time to do this that or anything, rush rush here rush rush there, so I better really stop typing what’s in my head.
I am sure this is just a phase precipitated from another blog, like a domino effect or maybe just like sending waves down a swimming pool from two points. You get big waves where they agree with the frequency and ripple bigger and bigger. Ermm..ok really stopping now. Good night.
Time flies especially when your mind is all tangled with thoughts. You could be sitting on a sofa motionless like an idle light bulb that’s just been switched on,
generating heat as it entertains a viscious circle of morbid thoughts which tumble away consuming all the kilojoules in your cranium,
in hope of thermotransformation into a bright light at the end of the tunnel, while the clock go tic toc tic toc.
I watched the snow hitting my window pane for a good 30 minutes and turned up 5 minutes late for work tonight. Didn’t feel like working. The chief nurse was Helen. They told me Kevin’s left the premise without handing over. I don’t blame him, the only patient in the unit is STILL that same patient, and poor doctor has a girlfriend to go back to and an hour drive to survive. Those other beds had been left untouched.
Helen is what you call big and bubbly. She is probably about 24 st and is one of the few people I know very comfortable with their bodies. The only conditions she suffers from are probably aneroxia reversa ( read: looking in the mirror and still thinks you are a size 8) and bulimia amnesia (read: forgetting to throw up after a good feast). She is a genious when it comes to defending matters pertaining to weight.
She knows her stuff, won’t take crap from any of the surgeons or the medics (we know nobody does when it comes to this one) and will put things right straight away when it comes to these people doing jumping off the plane without a parachute type thing in the unit.
I suppose with her experience, she would know more things than me. I ‘Google’ her and pick her brain all the time and she doesn’t mind that at all. The other day we were discussing about my exams and did a few questions with her. She would actually get up( this, she doesn’t do without bribing normally) and walk to the drug cupboard to get the Sodium Nitroprusside and get the drug information to help me with the questions I got wrong.
Things like .. “is kept in anhydrous form” true or false?
I mean if you’ve never used the damn thing and reading pharmacology book is something you’d do when you’ve run out of things to do, you wouldn’t know would you. This is what frustrates me about exams. It’s all about how well you study and memorise the fat books, but not so much about what you do in real life.
Talking about things that don’t make sense, earlier in the day, apparently a 51 year old woman was taken to theatre for extrication of a vibrator which had mysteriously impacted itself up the arse hole of this adventurous woman. I was like flippin’ eck, how did it get there? Did she leave it on the bed and accidently sat on it?
OOOOkhhhhh!!! Okkhhhhhh!!! Hohohohohoh …paiiiinnn.
The nurses preyed for the notes to find out what happened but according to our private investigator who was later caught snooping, it is not known how and what type and make of vibrator it was. The woman however, is now safely recovering from the vibratorectomy and the whole shock from the devastating ordeal.
Dr. Naj Khaiessa Ahmad reporting live for BluEScrubs. Selamat malam.
Sunday, February 27, 2005
Wikkitt, wikkit Boy
My old man has arrived home safely from The Holy land. Mekah. Energetic and glowing with health (according to Cik T). Alhamdulillah. My initial conversation was with the wicked wizard of the East, Your Oliness.
Oli, my ten year old bro picked up the phone.
Hello, it’s me. Oli eh tu? It could only be him with that squeaky voice.
Oli, upon hearing my voice, cleared his throat and put on his best British made-up accent.
Oh yeshhhh yeshhhh this is Mr. Oli, mau jual apa? (yes this is Oli, what are you selling?)
So Ba’ beli gapo for you? (What did Dad get you?)
Oli started counting,
Air zam zam
Never heard of buah an-nun (an-nun fruit) before.
Buah gapo? An-nun? Gapo namo ghima is that? Buah tin eh?(What in the name of a tiger is that?)
Bukan laa..I know la buah tin.. buah ni butir dio mace apple a bit , tok tahu lah (No, the pip is a bit like the apple’s, I don’t know)
I was even more puzzled.
I heard him sniggering.
Oli: Ishhh orang UK konon, buah unknown pun tak tahu. Unknown laaa (and you call yourself from the UK)
Unknown is unknown, I get you next time smarty pants.
Pass me those chillies.
Sleepy Shallow Night
May I say that, this picture of 5 empty beds, with clean sheets sprawled over them, pressed and starched, slight desterilised, is phenomenal.
Only one patient in the entire unit? Not even an outlier from the forever heaving medical High Dependency Unit (HDU). Shocking!! Ok, had better shut up before needing my foot surgically removed from my mouth.
When I turned up at 2030, Linda was flipping through an OK magazine with slight delirium tremens from whole day lack of workload. Julie had reverted back to usual habit of obsessive compulsion for tea making. One begins to wonder what their blood tea level is. Sarah was watching the monitor while biting her nails. Probably going cold turkey as well. Oh no it’s the telly, not any old monitor.
Kevin had his tea with us while handing over the only patient we had on the unit. Buzzing came on from the CCTV, a nurse from the Accident and Emergency stood patiently outside.
Sarah got up.Let me get it
Julie stopped stirring the tea. No I’ll get it.
Linda appeared from the loo. It’s my turn to do it
I had a sudden blast from the past moment, of a certain TV advert which kind of captured the short lived chaos.
Bedak Cuticura sapa ni?? Saya punya!! Bukan saya punya!! Bukan, man punya!! Adik punya..adik punya.
Something like that.
They scurried over to let the poor nurse in and later fight for the blood gas analyser. Now this is another Halley Comet phenomena you only see tonight and one night only. Not even a kati of Librium or Methadone would touch these poor nurses. They just had to do something. Linda started talking about knitting. Hmmm
Sarah towed a TV out earlier from the pantry and we all sat through a program about a bunch of school teachers who, in a week, learnt to can-can from the real Mouline Rouge people and later came back to Cheltenham ladies college to do a performance, which I must say turned out to be an entertaining one if not spectacular.
One of them looked a bit butch with an army type cropped hair style. No way we thought she was going to walk down the thin line between being a hussy and sexy show girl. That was the geography teacher. The other one was very generous on the top half but I think she did the best split at the end of the show. She's one of the history of arts teachers. The school girls cheered and screamed. How often do you see your teachers flash their knickers at you?
I was surprised by how much lyrics I still remember from those musical years, I was 15 then.
Everynight at half past 8
You’ll see us if you’re not too late
We’re the top of gay Paris
Everyone comes miles to see..
Watch us as we go
Now twinkling toes
Are twirly silken
Stockings are swirling
Lazy flimsy things...
Twirl twirl kick kick HIGHHHH kick kick kick twirl and split. tadaaaaaaaa
It was all so emotional. Seeing those women doing something they’ve never done before make me feel ashamed of myself. These day, apart from the exam, I don’t really think much about doing something as exhilarating, or as endorphin rewarding as that.
The stage and me at one point used to be very very close till I decided I wanted to save lives for a living. Ironically, only last night I was being philosophical about death itself, and how little medicine actually contributes beyond a certain age. The equation would definitely plot a sigmoid shape graph if I want to be Aspegers about it. Y being number of life saved, and X the age. It’s all purely entertaining but I am sure to those women, they’ve at least discovered that if they put their mind to it and persevere, nothing is impossible.
Michael Buble appeared in The Parkinson show which was pleasing, and having Will Smith following that, talking about how he actually remembered or reminded his wife of their anniversary by getting the florist people to spread every single inch of the bedroom floor with rose petals, so that she wouldn’t walk on anything else but the petals, completed my TV dose for the night. His whole understanding about marriage and adultery just confirmed what a fine man he is. And of course his wit, it’s addictive.
These days, if I think about black humour about love, I think about these two. On one side you have Mario Winans singing Hurt No More and I Don’t Wanna Know, always getting rejected, betrayed, stood up and hurt, time and time again. You start thinking , why would any girl do that to him? One the other, you have Usher with his many Confessions, who constantly has to say sorry for somehow or rather ended up in another woman’s bed, and his inability to stay monogamous. You know the drill.
On the white side we all know Bridget’s men, Daniel and Darcy. It doesn't matter if it's black or white. It’s almost just a question of whether you want to fly high with a bad boy like Jemima Khan does and ditch him when he becomes all grown up and talk about nothing but the politics of Pakistan, or to be a dutiful wife having the uterus quilted from the numerous caesarean sections because you are too posh to push, and walk around with a t-shirt bearing your husband’s name.
Why can’t they all be like Will Smith?
Now I am being completely shallow and very much like a reporter for the Sun.
Oh Oh Oh too much free time. This is sinful. Oh please this is going to spoil me. Oh Oh Oh.. What am I going to do?
How many sugar Naj?
Saturday, February 26, 2005
I couldn’t possibly sleep in that on- call room tonight. Apparently Sarah said that the maintenance people have been at it the whole day. Drilling, knocking, bashing and god knows what else, and it’s really dusty.
The last time she popped her head in there, it was smoking and she had a coughing fit. My bronchi aren’t exactly feeling tough at the moment, don’t think it can hack it, had better stay well away.
Kevin handed over 2 patients tonight.
Look at those empty beds.
One with a tracheostomy (tube in the neck for breathing) and the other in shock, bleeding from a stomach ulcer, which means he could misbehave tonight.
As we were volleying some blood results and how many units of bloods he’s had, an 86 year old man just came off the table, and wheeled in from the OR next door. His burst main pipe repaired (abdominal aortic aneurysm). This surgery carries a high mortality rate, especially in that age range.
He had all tubes in all orifices, but still exsanguinating from everywhere. Blood pooling in the mouth, nose, trickling from the wound and oozing from his rectum (bum hole). In the OR he’d been given 17 units of blood altogether and FFP (clotting stuff), and he’s still oozing. We all know that this guy is not going to survive.
Why is he taken to here (ICU) then? To garnish the successful surgery on a futile subject? Kevin thoughts were similar to mine, they shouldn’t have operated in the first place. We all know with a heart like that and a ruptured AAA (abdominal aortic aneurysm) he’s just not going to pull through. Maybe it’s a good practice for the surgeon? Who is actually in denial? Are we staging something? If yes, for who?
We let the family see him on the machine as a living person before switching it off. I hate this bit about my job, it makes a sharp twinge in my chest. I don’t think having a hand chopped off is as painful as this.
Pupils fixed dilated, unreactive
No heart sounds on auscultation
No respiratory effort
No response to pain stimuli
I declare ___________ deceased at 21:51
May he RIP
I felt numb.
My perception about death has taken a complete 180 degrees.
Death is inevitable, it’s certain, will happen, and everybody has to go through it.
One has to die of something, at some point. Let it go.
I used to get hugs from the nurses when something like this happened, but my goofy face didn’t get any sympathy tonight. Sarah brought in what looked like half of a big cake.
Cake? What are we celebrating? Somebody just died? Mereka ni dah tak makan saman betul..
Sometimes I couldn’t keep up with these nurses. I know they've overdosed themselves with death but I am not quite. Sarah told me to grow up and shove a big piece of cake on a paper plate and said that I should just have some cake (and put on some weight) and swallow the grief with it. Started talking about last night's TV program.
I pushed the thoughts of death at the back of my mind. The cake was horrible. Angie sat opposite me telling us about one of her friends who is a ‘madam’, a ‘lady of the night’ and how she herself had been tempted and lured to get £2500 in a night. Shocking!! We couldn't believe Angie would do something like that. Her reply was,
Well, life is a big tapestry. *Grin*
Conversation dissipated into what our names mean when they realized my face was turning tomato colour.
Angie- the angel
Linda-the pretty one
Sarah-something that is completely not her, and I can’t remember
Kelly-the clever one
All eyes on me when Kelly keyed in my name which later produced nought result.
Duhhh! What do you expect?
Like a grandmother telling a fairytale at bedtime, told them that the root of my name is Najm which means a star, which is also a verse in the Quran. Never seen a bunch of nurses so interested in a subject different to sex, men and money.
Angie was completely blown away by my description about how in the Quran there are some verses which talk about honey, bees and ants. Remind self to find a translated Quran for her. She’s turning 38 next week. Somehow my vision of demure Angie donning a 'tudung' was captured in high pixels.
Sipped the tea Kelly made in a polka dot mug which apparently had some stains around the rim. Kelly has a birthmark on her neck which looks like a hickie. Took me 3 weeks to finally get that one. She caught me staring one day which was not very British.
It's not a love bite Naj!, exactly her words. I pretended I had lives to save.
Didn’t complain about the mug. Will be too rude. Was thinking what to do with the tea when the bleep went off. Saved.
Escaped to the maternity to put an epidural in a lady 6 years younger than me.
See my predicament here?
This is another thought which rendered me goofy faced. I must say though, without making my obsession with women’s backs obvious, this girl’s back was a definition of perfection. Divine.
On the Tuffier’s line, a small rose tattoo put an exclamation to the whole display of lush curvature of the vertebrae. I felt it and found the groove to play straight away. She was a happy lady 10 minutes later.
As the unit was calm and Sarah wasn’t winging much (I quite like it when she is in charge). Thought to self best put head down for a kip. Came home at 0240. You never know when the storm might come in.
The corridor was almost haunted with quietness, could hear my footsteps making squeeking sounds as rubber frictioned against vinyl floor, the corridor seemed long.
Stopped to watch the fish in the pond. The only obvious living creatures out there wide awake, swimming around gracefully. Body glistening as they swam close to the surface. Could hear the trickling of the mini waterfall. Where is everybody?
Friday, February 25, 2005
All Gone, Consumed
Pre-emptively staying up late tonight as a triple whammy is coming starting tomorrow. 3 nights in a row of darkness to enlightenment 12 hour shift. Body needs to adjust and am just helping along.
Still wondering how people do the work and study and work and study malarkey and still pass FRCA. Did a few MCQs online just now, been an extra good girl so felt should get an extra reward, so did the reward type thing. Do good, reward, do bad, spank, or anything to that effect. Indulged in MARS ice cream. Didn’t plan for the whole tub to face extinction, but it did.
Forgotten how much had loved ice-cream. Always had ice-cream when was with T-Rex. T-Rex is first love, had shared many tubs of ice-cream with him. In fact, had Pavlovian with T-Rex on the subject of ice cream.
Saw T-Rex, ting! Ice-cream.
Actually whole engineering of consciousness is facing acute threat from unknown forces. Eyelids heavy, but mustn’t fall asleep yet,
look alive, look alive.
Must mention, am also slightly depressed as February is zooming by like a double decker bus on Edgeware road. Both red, am talking about Valentines’ day here. Difference being February 2005 whizzed past once and the buses, well busses innit. Always there so long people keep wearing unmatching underwear.
Must mention also, watched Eiffel I’m in Love which came through in the post 2 days ago. Girl no boobs, guy nice lips. Titik!
Made me missed Paris. Went to Paris with T-Rex aeons ago with a bunch of other Malaysians. Climbed up to the top of Eiffel, the blimming thing swayed. I promise you it did. T-Rex wasn’t happy. There’s a reason why he’s called T-Rex, 6’ 2”. One would think he’s used to height by 21, most people are fully grown by 21.
Supposedly romantic, am keeping a list of reasons why it’s not.
Is the big day. No, not a date of a matrimony to anybody with a penis.
In fact it’s the day of tebabbowww. Am studying but am pissed off still have to do blimming on calls.
Burp-excuse me. All gone.
Thursday, February 24, 2005
He Knows # 1
There must be something about 11am. At least, it’s the time in the day when your body is telling yourself, the remnants of the toast and marmite at breakfast time are being mobilised from the liver to feed the quickly irritable, cranky neural network, and your reply to your body is, do it quickly then!!!
The first case took nearly 2 hours. A laparoscopic cholecystectomy for 2 hours!!! I paced up and down the OR. Stopped at the theatre audio system and put on Maroon 5.
Twiddling my pen, looking at Paul the ODA. Paul looked at the watch, shrugged his shoulders. Another 3 cases after this one.
Never worked with Paul before, he’s an agency ODA. Today, we gelled straight away. Anybody who does a Sellick manoeuvre like that, prepare iv drip like that must be a good one. I like him, I’d keep him.
I was working with Dr.B who turned up later for the second case. This is an anaesthetist with 4 Ps.
Prissy, and Pedantic.
Everything I do has to have a reason. Every single manoeuvre must come with some evidence that I know exactly what I am doing, everything has to be exaggerated, all movements dramatized, exam like. Is anybody else having a drama lesson like me at this moment?
"How do you know that your ODA is giving you the right cricoid pressure"?
My mouth felt dry, my tongue has conveniently stuck itself at the roof of my mouth.
Looking at Paul, looking at the double door, hoping the answers would glide in with the draft from the ventilation inside the OR. Coughed a bit, and thank God it still sounded genuine, as only had the cold 2 weeks ago.
Was buying time, but a pathetic attempt at subtly forking sympathy from this tall 60 year old guy with a full head of white hair like Steve Martin in The Father of The Bride.
At one angle he does look like Richard Gere. On ICU there’s a rumour that I snogged him, apparently that’s why I had the cold 2 weeks ago, and that was about the time he had it too. All because every time his name is mentioned I’d cringe and turn red. I know exactly who started it.
According to her, I fluster whenever Dr. B asks me a question, making the rumour saucy. Those nurses show no mercy. I get teased, my legs pulled, my hair tugged and my scrubs poked at every time I am on call there.
It was and intense start and the freaking nasogastric tube wasn’t the one that’s been cooled overnight in the fridge so it’s a bit soft. We know what would happen if one try to shove a soft tube through a hole.
It curled, it bent, it displayed mind of it’s own. My mind was figuring out the answers to his questions while my left hand hoiking up the Macintosh blade, held firm and steady to begin with but later shook violently beyond control. My biceps and triceps drenched and possibly pickled in the lactate from the sustained contractions. It was close to excruciating.
Dr B stood there like a headmaster peering over his reading glasses, his back against the controlled drug cabinet. I looked up possibly hoping he’ll come and help.
"Errr…anytime today Dr Ahmad, anytime today".
He picked up the supplement from the journal and started reading. Was that a smile?
Pressure, pressure, pressure, can he not stand there? My pretend-he’s-not-there trick didn’t work so was the imagine-he’s-naked trick, and I owe him an answer still.
He Knows # 2
From my seat they looked like two aliens playing, experimenting with two prongs stuck into a human abdomen, like a virtual reality videogame. The conversation was intense and absorbable. They’re both convinced that one shouldn’t torture their children by making them do medicine.
Dr.B disagreed. His voice was almost whispering. Didn’t think he wanted those two green men know that we’ve been eavesdropping. We had a separate, deep and meaningful conversation on the same subject.
We concluded anaesthetists are far more jovial people compared to the surgeons, but when I asked him why is it that anaesthetists have the highest rate of suicide, his answer was because we know exactly how to kill ourselves properly. Both surgeons looked at us. The beeping of the patients heart beat from the monitor amplified as suddenly everybody went quiet.
Look at those eyes, he definitely has Richard Gere’s eyes, especially when he smiles, which is shamefully not that often.
He did, once when I missed a vein, another when I dropped an ampoule of morphine on the floor and the other big one was when I nearly strangled myself with the iv drip lines amongst other lines.
He then became rather philosophical about making choices and having options in life and how being a doctor is such a big decision.
Some things have to go, in order for you to get another. I can so relate to that. Here I am in a foreign country, digging, looking for things that I want, I desire, events that I hope to happen. While I am digging, the sun still rises in the morning and sets in the evening, and my digging never stops, so is the cycle. I let a day pass by. We age a day. If your birthday is yesterday, today you are your age plus a day.
When I think I have dug deep enough, I am still unsure whether I have time to climb out and watch the sun rising and setting or will it by then be just enough time to just stay down there and be happy that now, I have a grave that I dug myself.
That’s how deep and philosophical it all turned out at 11 am with Dr.B. The Maroon 5 is on the track –She Will Be Loved, which was calming in a way. When I finally reverted to my baseline vagal induced heart rate of calm and tranquillity of about 76 beats per minute, he broke free by asking that clinical question again.
He doesn’t have to do the teaching, he doesn’t have to grill me. Just talk about the Silk Road, or the history of gun powder. Just..just…
I knew the answer, but of course it wasn’t precise. I felt my neck, to illustrate where the cricoid is, in desperate attempt to aid my answer.
"Ahh that’s cheating. Even I, can tell from here from where your thyroid isthmus is", he smirked.
He can see the swelling in my neck? Is it that obvious?
I found myself telling him that I had a scan which I have organised it myself. I felt a responsibility to explain that I haven't been neglecting myself.
His tone of voice changed, his posture turgid. He was most attentive and also surprised that he’s just diagnosed a goitre without touching. His whole expression changed. He wanted to know what the result was. I just said abnormal.
He didn’d like my attitude and I knew that.
"It could be cancer, you know that, and what makes you think you get immunised by all these. Normal people can sue NHS if they don’t get seen in a week".
His eyes were more intense, his pupils dilated. It was easy to see as they were blue with dirty green streaks.
I can detect that those words came out without much thoughts. He was so careless with the C word, and I can sense atonement in the next thing he said.
"Have a day off soon and get a TFT and sort yourself out. Go for coffee now if you want".
Why did he have to say that? He’s supposed to say that I am a hypochondriac and I am trying to justify my tardiness, my lack of concentration and my deteriorating memory.
Being a doctor doesn’t make you immunized against anything. Not even flu. Didn't like the coffee I made after that.
Tuesday, February 22, 2005
Don't Stop Won't Stop
Kerry, my favourite ODA, was restless and kept flicking the KY jelly from the cap of 16 G needle at me and I was sure Dr.A, the boss for the day, got the message loud and clear that I was running on low fuel, but knowing him, his middle name is penguin- face.
I was dying to do a runner to the next available mumsy midwife on the wards for a rescue cup of tea.
Didn't have breakfast this morning.
Never again would I get the chance to see so many men cry without being kicked in the gonads. First lady on the C-section today is an army officer’s wife. He just flew in from Iraq yesterday for the birth.
Boy, the cadet can cry and learnt very fast that we do stock up on Kleenex. I felt a balloon inflating inside my chest, and a hard lump on my throat seeing him trying to keep his lacrimal glands under control as he watched his firstborn greeted the world. His face turned lobster and by the end of it the Kleenex box was half the original weight. The baby was a boy.
Second lady was tall but the partner was slightly vertically challenged, but definitely no shortage in the tear jerking department. He cried bucket loads as well, but not sure whether it was the OR lights or it was him or possibly me but he did look a bit yellow. The baby was again, a boy, also slightly yellow.
Third lady popped up at lunch time, being wheeled in by two midwives with dresses a size too small.
What do you mean lunchtime already? We anaesthetists are from planet Zindage, we don’t eat. Eating is a waste of time. Oh go on then bring the patient in.
Despite the bombarding blackmail from my gut department, we all knew, when the baby needs to come out, it needs to come out and pain is not something we tolerate anymore in this day and age.
She had a spinal and it was, thankfully swift. 80% is patient’s cooperation, and 20% is the anaesthetist’s chance of missing the dura. I was just grateful that my coordination function was isolated from my comprehension centre at that time of day.
The partner had a deep shocked horror look on his face seeing the little creature which was only 27 week old being put in a plastic bag and tied at the shoulder level. Face covered with a plastic funnel, forced with a green balloon and tubing to breath, looking rather pale.
Being that small, these 27 week olds are not capable of conserving heat and I am sure the plastic thing is currently, the latest randomised controlled trialled, most effective way of serving that purpose. The baby had to go to the special baby care unit and this I am sure would send tears to any honest man who’s impregnated any honest woman. The baby was a boy.
It was 3 o’clock and Kerry was tidying up and she was muttering something about killing Bill, because it was Bill’s turn really to cover maternity today. He must have had a visit to the lady with crystal ball about today’s non-stop-won’t-stop at the maternity. We laughed at how killing Bill would fit the day were having.
We then chatted about recent movies, her upcoming trip to Vietnam in May and whether or not she’s coming to see me and Oli, because I'd be home by then. I complained non-stop about how busy it has been recently while packing my bag. We are not having another Kill Bill day, and we both agreed on that, as we left for lunch. That thought faced demise at the door when Sheila the chief midwife stormed in and incoherently mentioning another baby that needed to come out. Now!!
Say bye bye lunch.
The lady had spinal. The husband was hairy, so hairy his chest could hide a rolled up £10. When he was holding the baby (when it finally arrived at 4 pm) , it was a good move to hold the baby close to his chest for extra insulation. We ran out of Kleenex so the big guy had to use the little guy’s pink hat. Yes, the baby was a boy.
It was a big party, we even played Spice Girls- Zing a Zing Ah, at one point before I got so cranky and turned it off.
Everybody had their party hats, mine was same colour as Kerry’s. Blue.
Men cried. Baby men cried.
Ladies wheeled out with flatter tummies. Smiling.
The Grimsby population has increased by 4, at the very least, by the XY species.
The anaesthetist walked home half a kilo lighter, in acute renal failure with orange urine.
I heard a loud tic-toc-tic-toc. Apa tu? Stuff spell checker. ZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Monday, February 21, 2005
Lub Dup ..Lub Dup.
When I cracked a joke about the water cooler at the beginning of the presentation, I was actually praying hard that nobody saw my hands shaking, about to throw a focal fit. Maybe somebody noticed that the mouse pointer was a bit unsteady.
I didn’t feel like I was ready to start but everything around me was in a standstill, everybody was seated, steaming coffee in yellow Sevoflurane mugs scattered across the horse shoe table, half eaten sandwhiches dotted the pine table on soggy paper plates gaping at me as if waiting for me to get into the gear and action.
Those eyes looking at me, every gestures under scrutiny, and for a moment I realized I was the only girl..woman..lady. All three but I was the only one.
My mouth was dry beyond description. I felt like being pushed off a cliff, against my will. I couldn’t possibly start, but I found myself starting, but rather like a cogwheel. Rickety, unsteady, really didn’t feel like doing it. I clicked on the file against the integrity of the corpus collosum.
The first slide had an uploaded picture of a mummified patient suffered from whole body burn on a dialysis machine. Everybody got sucked into the picture, nobody looked at me. The distraction worked. Good. What a relief that was, like a weight being lifted off, now is a good chance to map out how I should start my sentence.
Quick, quick think of a good opening sentence. Why am I so nervous anyway today. Done this many times. Never felt this nervous.
I felt inadequate, unresourceful. Anytime I could say something wrong, it’s up to me,
do I screw this or do I do it right. What could be worse than losing my train of thoughts and just read it off the power point? There’s always that trick.
What time is it?
Even before I could compute my own question,
Good morning, no..good afternoon everybody.
I heard myself saying. Completely the wrong foot in a pile of buffalo dunk. Some monkey faces on the right laughed quietly. Ooo great.
With me, a bad start will just snowball into something either completely humiliating or just simply a disaster. Felt the adrenaline of quadruple strength hijacked my whole body, so surreal, I was high but a bit woozy. My heart was beating so hard and so fast I felt it trying to breakout from the pericardium.
At times my eyes became cloudy, a bit like the windscreen misting when I sit in the car waiting for the engine to warm up after a night being left out in the cold December night.
At times I choked and cleared my throat. Many times I stuttered, these words didn’t help;
Preliminary (4 attempts)
Acute Interstitial Nephropathy (3 attempts)
Suppression of reflex vasoconstrictive responses – (in one breath and mean it)
And many others which I immediately cleared off my STM –short term memory centre to conserve my mental capacity to fuel the exhausting sail through the sea of suicide.
Suddenly…my handphone rang!!! Tettetetettetetetttetetetettetetetettetetetetetetet
Dr. McN was intrigued. I kept a straight face.
Please stop. Why didn’t I switch it off?
“Is that your phone Naj?”
He looked surprisingly impressed with my clever selection of ring tone.
I pretended as if it was Dr. G who'd just farted, something that could happen anytime, completely normal, but it was so obvious, this.
The boys nearest to me on my right pointed that my bag is now jiggling. Oh no…it’s on vibration mode as well…
I ended the presentation with a question on current discussion in the journal. Volatile it was, the big bosses lost themselves in a heated debate, I quietly crawled to the back to pinch a few sarnies.
I sneaked out to the annexx, leaving the stirred seminar room to seek comfort in Pauline the secretary. Her room was so cosy and she doesn't make me nervous.
Auuuhh Me Neck!
I've just discovered that the previous comments in the posts had been chomped away slowly but surely by what looked like a crafty little geeky cryptic program on Haloscan. Can't help but having images of those rumpus rumpus creatures called Langoliers which feed on time and airports chomping away on the comments. Now what? I've grown to like this blog you know.
On something completely different, I've been buried in materials for tomorrow's presentation Acute Renal Failure In Intensive Care Medicine. It's been churned and regurgitated, tweaked, cut and paste stretched, all that. Now my neck aches and my left ulnar nerve does a techno dangdut. It's very easy to get yourself engrossed when doing work on the computer, but must not neglect those areas we all put under stress and strain.
We might feel like Susan Sarandon one day and Natalie Portman on the other, but we only have one body to plough the day with. Love it.
What does Richard Gere and Usher have in common?ZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Sunday, February 20, 2005
Today, something told me, that I have this uncontrollable need to please people. If it is a circle in a Venn diagram, it’d cross the other circle of Venn called inability to say no, which will cross another called sorry spaghetti. All of the above is me.
I might have a burning desire to for once do what I want and what I think is right, but when people start giving me the reasons for why A is better than B, and I can’t do C because of D, that’s it before I know it, I’ll be the desired protégé, all my reasons melted away and silt at the bottom of the do it right riverbed.
Today, I didn’t give a monkey about all the couldn’t dos and don’t dos, I just did it. Result? Didn’t feel one bit happy or liberated or phhhwwwoooarrrrh. They say it’s not in the genes, I agree. Neither have I got the bones.
Is my happiness subject to an approval by certain people? If that’s true, then I wouldn’t stand a chance trying to plot a matrimony the cowboy way be it in Vegas or Siam.
I suppose you have to really be a hardcore bitch to say things that’d hurt people, just to prove a point. On the other hand, would not letting the person know how you really feel is exactly being an angel?
I do think a lot when it’s blimming cold out there and all you want to do is go back to bed.
p/s: MissYY, no I didn’t shag the tree, it’s snowing. A bit too cold.
Saturday, February 19, 2005
Location: Living room, curled up in a baggy oversized jumper and a pair of worn out corduroy, on the sofa.
Scent: Strawberry candle, the flame flickering full body in the grail made into a shape of a sparrow, and the eager smell of the steamy Cadbury’s hot chocolate.
On TV: Joe Pasquale rubbing his hands together and snowflakes coming down showering the overjoyed audience including Melanie Syke.
Also watching: The Samsung E800, just in case I’ve gone deaf from the silence, and it ‘rings’.
Reading: Saturday- Ian McEwan..
Thoughts: Now that Maggie’s moved out, who am I getting for a flatmate? What am I to you? What colour is your mood now? What are you doing? Have they received my application form?
Do I go to Siti Nurhaliza's concert?
Listening: Norah Jones – Don’t Miss You At All.
As I sit and watch the snow
I don’t miss you at all
I hear children playin’ laughin’ so loud
I don’t think of your smile
So if you never come to me
You’ll stay a distant memory
Out of my window I see lights going dark
Your dark eyes don’t haunt me
And then I wonder who I am
Without the warm touch of your hand
As I sit and watch the snow
I don’t miss you at all
I don’t miss you at all
Sometimes, in grief, we say what we don’t mean and it’s something we later regret. In temporary insanity from flaming anger, we tell ourselves, we don’t feel what we precisely feel. Is that just us feeding our matrix of ego? If we’re honest about how we feel, does it give any guarantee that people are going to be extra careful with it? No, you’d be a fool to think so.
Frantic pattering on the window snapped me out of my spiralling thoughts into the abyss of self pity. I couldn’t believe it. It's a sacred razzmatazz of whiteness out there. It's a blizzard. It's confusing. It’s mid February and it’s snowing!
I opened the window and for a moment I wish I could share the same fresh cold air, but as I said, I don't miss you.
Friday, February 18, 2005
Post On Call Blues
The sleep had been taken out of the equation, but you still have to carry on the next day because you still have to function like people, smile like people, eat like people and put up with errands that come with the definition of existence.
It’s like taking the ‘n’ out of autumn. It will still sound the same. There’s still winter to follow, and spring to bloom and summer to scorch bare bodies. There are leaves to rake, dry breeze that cracks lips and utter confusion in the wardrobe department.
How do people do it with another person to get sleeping pattern synchronised with and perhaps with a little one who’d happily crawl up begging to be picked up, demands to have bottoms dried and tummy filled? What if the little one’s staple diet is what’s come out of your mammary glands? ..and all you want to do is crawl into bed?
Now I am properly losing my marbles. TGIF.
Thursday, February 17, 2005
On The Trot
Last night’s on call was an ultimate definition of being on the trot. 10 bloody hours whizzing about and on top of that, what I really could do without is a medical SpR with Bin Laden’s beard dumping a patient for me to sort out. (That much beard is surely an infection risk).
Uikkss…do I look like I am here to sort out your patient mate?
The drill is, you take history ,you examine and you treat. He couldn’t even tell me a proper history and no treatment executed apart from a call to ITU. Hmmmm
Just because the patient is now just about to kick the bucket (because you left it for so long), doesn’t mean the treatment is ITU! When you say we never have beds, you better bloody well get that in your head that we do not have a bed.
I wish I could asexual reproduce a mini me who would do the talk-to-the-hand-cos-the-face-ain’t-listening while I do my job without getting hassled every 2 seconds.
As he disappeared and washed his hands off this one, the unit rang around to find staff to come in from home and do an emergency shift because a new bed needed. I had to make the patient better in the meantime. Ironic.
The story I had from the referring SpR was, this was previously a well man with some weird and wonderful autoimmune syndrome causing some blablablablabla fibrosis, or maybe blablabla alveolitis, still under investigations. My heart sank looking at the 3 volume medical notes presented to me. I don’t have a week!!
Stuffed the notes, the patient was going off big time. He was sweaty and clammy. In 5 minutes we’ll have a dead man.
Took a deep breath, did a cockpit drill ABC, ABC, ABC.
Panic no good. Breath good.
Eh, this is not something weird and wonderful. It’s only somebody with wet lungs, just about to drown in his own body fluid.
Treatment commenced, and after yes from the boss over the phone, I went back to review and we now have a man who could give me a thumb’s up without disturbing the integrity of the whole cleverly orchestrated multilevel superhighway network of tubes and pumps of GTN and aminophylline and buzzing nebulizer on his face. He looked like a missing character from Appollo 13 stranded in the Jurassic Park.
Alhamdulillah, another life saved! He’s only 65 and he has 2 lovely daughters who think the world of him.
Changed my mind, instead sat on him and see how it goes as he was getting better by the minute. Didn’t tell boss about the change of plan of not putting the chap on the machine but the chap went to the unit for close observation nevertheless.
Sometimes, it’s so easy to get oneself tangled in a concoction of uncertainties. A step back is a good start, have a scheme in one’s head, be systematic, think easy, take things one at a time, displace all negative vibrations from the pessimists, put knowledge into heat, sweat, frustration, anxiety, diligence and perseverance. Do one’s best.
And finally, have faith, leave it all in the hands of the AlMighty. If his number is up, winning is not on the menu here, but if it’s not yet, it’s a test for oneself, patience, integrity, passion, skills, composure and thriving under pumping sky high level of adrenaline. Still have a lot buzzing around, that’s why typing like a bullet train in Tokyo.
Had better jump in the bath when cleaner finished hoovering the bedroom. What day is it today anyway? Why is her hoover louder than usual? Has she changed the hoover bag?
Auuuuuuuuhhh my head hurts, the balls of my feet throb, my back, my neck, my shoulders felt like they’ve been strapped together the whole night with a cling film, and my armpits stuffed with blu tac dipped in grease.
Things to look forward to:
Nice clean sheets.
Toast and Nutella
Saturday by Ian McEwan – doubt this will speed the onset of much needed sleep.
G’nite..good morning rather. Either way me go bed now, me no care. ZZZZZZZZZZZZzz
Wednesday, February 16, 2005
Getting Into The Groove
FEW FACTS: A cystoscopy is basically a hollow metal rod shoved up the wee-hole. Could be one of the three or one of the two holes in people with plumbing problems. Usuallyperformed by the water work surgeons, unless this has recently turned into some form of an ugly fetish. In my not so experienced experience, I am yet to see one carried out without any general anaesthetics.
I had to put 14 of these to sleep today. fourteeeeeeeennnnn!!!!!
Oh dear dear dear, could life be more vaginal or penile for that matter? By the 12th client, I was ready to gas myself down or strangle myself with the blood pressure cuff. Couldn’t stand the whole industrial cum production line feeling to this job on this particular day.
The last 2 patients were slightly different though. They too were for the above procedure, but also for circumcisions. You could say that it's a bit like Fairy washing liquid, buy one get one free or kill two birds with one stone type thing.
This, I like because I get to play.
To keep the patient in bed, without wailing at the full moon like a warewolf or abusing the staff nurses on the ward in pain some 2 hours later, the consultant thought it’d be kind to put penile block in. Basically, it’s local anaesthetics injected at the base of the shaft of the penis to numb it.
So I had the patient 'asleep', breathing, everything hunky dory. I put the rubber on.
Gloves that is. With my left thumb bent, the rest of the fingers coordinated themselves into a spade.
I dug straight above the penis, under the symphysis pubis yanking the penis out of the way, mercilessly probing for the groove. The shrivelled penis flip flopped side to side up and down from the vigorous, jerky tuggings.
Now where is that groove again…..
I thought I heard some whimpering sounds.
I quickly realized, there were 3 people in the anaesthetic room vigilantly watching. I mini scanned the room, left hand frozen in-situ.
Dr G- male 1 (face screwed and shoulders tightened, arms later akimbo),
Bill-male 2 (frowning frivolously, at the same time hawk-eyeing the needle at the tip of a full syringe of Bupivacaine I had firmly in my right hand, in a rather Elektra-and –her-weapon manner),
Gary-male 3 (sheer horror written all over his face, in his head definitely running some statistics of how my mal handling of the ‘lethal weapon’ could possibly turn into a total premature circumcision even before the surgeon could get to it)
Dr. G, brusque, in his not so obvious manner, cleared his throat after the first word he tried to vocalize, came out a little pre-pubertal.
“ Tssssskkk….OOOooooooh dear, I am not sure if you have anything against it Naj, but you have to be a bit more gentle than that.”
I saw the two pinheaded plonkers suffering in silence behind Dr. G as they were trying very hard not to laugh out loud. Gary, a red haired, was controlling himself so badly his face was inflamed, like he’s just had the biggest hard dump.
They knew instantly that the BJA journal on the worktop will soon be nicely rolled and transformed into a cunning weapon to whack some heads.
Grrrrrrrrr……continue struggling to concentrate and finding the groove.
Monday, February 14, 2005
Happy Vals Day!
Not sure whether it’s the Ferrero Roche,
Or the bubble bath rose petals,
Or the True Star perfume,
Or the Milan Kundera, Unbearable Lightness of Being DVD,
Or the Michael Buble CD,
Or the sultry red rose,
Or the little teddy with a patch on his head,
Or the fact that anonymosity has brought altogether a whole different meaning to my insignificant life?
Should there be any reason at all?
I am high on life itself, and why shouldn’t I?
Why shouldn’t any girl?
This is me, vibrating with all that I could without splitting myself into some
quarks and antimatter charging this chair with some magnetic field induced by frolicking
back and forth from the planet called Grimsby,
reaching out to those capable of loving,
extending my right arm deep into the black hole of promised love,
keeping head tilted to the wholesome beam of the lunar crescent,
gasping to the inevitable curtain of diabolic clouds, pregnant with showers of evil non-loving droplets,
like a sorority in the stratosphere,
feeling ashamed that something could take over me completely,
must be love.
HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!!!
p/s: don’t do things I wouldn’t do! kerrching!
Friday, February 11, 2005
I Am Only One Call Away
What I found strange was, in all the 4 shops that I went to, after the visit to Barclays and the Post Office, I noticed the same song being played. That Alicia Keys song. Funny how, some songs meant more to you than usual when you’re at some particular place, at some particular moment, feeling some particular feelings. I suppose it’s that vibration again.
The song must have been vibrating at quite a low frequency matching my not so high one, and upon doing that, they just hit the motorway of melancholy without any services along the way for any remote possibility of recuperating.
Had mocha at Starbucks all by myself, and had a deep 2 way conversation with expanded self. Had a book with me to dress myself with oh look I am so comfortable sitting here all by myself. Don’t pity me. Expanded self wasn’t pleased that I am feeling rather vulnerable these days. I can’t help it though. It’d be a lie to say that I am not. Who wouldn’t .
There’s Cik T who is not feeling very bright. She’s started coughing round about the same time as when I started, and still coughing. I don’t think her cough is going to get any better with her sudden interest in getting all the cactuses into the pots. All those dust and pollens are only just too happy to make their way into some moist places, like her throat.
Oli still wet the bed despite getting the ‘chop-chop’ 10 months ago, and this makes Cik T miserable. Over the phone, he made some noise which was suppose to be that of an angry Turkey and that of a surprised Turkey.
To be honest it sounded more like a cookie monster choking on some cookies. I made the same noise to connect and he seemed to understand and so we had a deep, thoughtful Turkey conversation for a while. We stopped when he actually spluttered the rice all over the phone. He passed the phone back to Cik T. More headache for Cik T.
Nadia is home from the boarding school and she’s into fighting the boys - Taekwando. Who better to practice with? She has two boys in their 20s to have challenging roaring sparring with. She seems to think that we don't have to cook the food before we can eat them. This gives Cik T more headache.
One of the boys had a D in his recent exam and demanded for a re-sit which will cost Cik T money. He’s at his most self recently. I know he is fighting, and he wants to be normal and well, like any other 20 odd year olds.
His veins flow the metabolites of all sorts of benzodiazepines, amines and esters, but still he wakes up in the morning, fighting those voices, those ramblings from the third person. Last exam, despite all that, he got up on the stage for the ‘best student’ award. Cik T was proud. She wore the Bally shoes I gave her for the ceremony. I was proud. Not shocked.
We always knew that he’s the strongest among us all, and the most clever. He is The Fighter. He even fights the police when they come to take him to ward 7 sometime ago.
My Old Man is still in Mekah and will only be home on the 22nd. Money is a bit tight. Cik T gets most headaches from The Fighter, but I told Cik T I am always here and all she has to do is tell me when I call.
The other one of the boys, The Musang is also home, having a respite from his creative world, but camouflages himself as either an owl or a musang. He will only be seen during the day not moving, still and not budging apart from his respiratory muscles and intermittent tossing and turning in the living room, and in the night he will metamorphosize into either an owl who reads dusty books or a musang out on a hunt for chicken eggs. Only to come home in the morning to sleep.
It’s quite hard sometimes to get to the TV when he rigor mortis right in front of it and imagine a 10 year old trying to watch Kluang Man on mute. Not easy. I feel for you Oli.
And me? I’ve done what I could today on my end to help Cik T a bit and also something which I haven’t done for anyone for a long long time.
I hope tonight won’t be one of those on calls, and I hope I survive the forthcoming bittersweet months to be at 828 Sri Aman. Anon. Ameen.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS AND SELAMAT MENYAMBUT MAAL HIJRAH.
Thursday, February 10, 2005
In Ink Please.
I can’t remember if I am in a possession of any ink pens. Have not written in ink for years, I am not sure if I could still use one without canting batik all over an A4.
The last time was probably during A-level time, when my biology teacher, Mrs Howard insisted that our handwriting will all transform into something close to state of art if we all write in ink instead of biro.
It confused me because only a little while before that she was giving this and that and a blahblahblah about how mine was like spaghetti bolognese and my blonde busty biology lab mate’s like somebody with Parkinson’s. It would not make any difference, regardless of what we do. She was a walking contradiction, Mrs Howard.
At that point I thought Parkinson was her husband. It’s just the way she said Parkinson, like he’s always getting the telling off for leaving the toilet seat up or leaving the crumbs on the sofa.
My lab mate didn’t talk all that much, but one thing I remember was the story about her near kidnap experience. Her dad was apparently a big big guy in steel trading and construction industry in England. Her skirts were from Laura Ashley and her shoes were Kickers. Something a girl like me could only stare at.
When she did talk, she’d always fluster and her fingers would always play with her collar which extended to quite low possibly due to her acquired selective inability to do up the buttons right up. At other times it’d be her pendant, which would be the object of the fiddle.
It was an initial ‘K’, and it was an 18K gold. I don’t know about the boys sitting opposite us, but I sometimes felt the room temperature was a little bit too hot for my liking.
If I need to pass my exam, I need to apply to take the exam. To do this I need to fill in this form, and to do this I need an ink pen. To get an ink pen, since Maggie doesn’t have one either, I have to make another trip to ASDA. To get to ASDA I need to drive and leave my parking space downstairs.
If I do that, when I come back, the space will be gone. Then I have to park on the curb. If I park on the curb, come tomorrow, I will get another ticket. If I get another ticket, it will be the one that comes after the last warning and I will have to pay, and I really don’t want to see them better off with my £25.
I could sneak into the ICU stationary cupboard, but I doubt they’d have ink pens.
Amongst many many thoughts today, this one gets blogged. Just goes to show, it’s the little little things occupying your thoughts that are the culprits half of the time.
They break your train of thoughts and while you’re thinking about whether it’s worth driving all the way and risking the parking space and the fines, you were physically in the middle of putting the key down somewhere and if it wasn’t in the African bowl you got from Rose when she got married, where keys live, you really dare not imagine where else it’d be (and the subsequent raiding of the study).
If I start and let myself entertain thoughts about Rose and her wedding in Monkey Island, this is going to be so long I’d be a little less keen to spell check.
Stop here I shall and let my logic figure out my temporary miseries, an ink pen and the key.
Just A Thought.
How structured, organized and busy they are, taking care of those they love. Still they manage to do all and still feel content.
The husband and the baby. The anticipation of meeting the most important people in their lives after a hard day at work. The joy buying baby little gadgets. Must be a different feeling alltogether.
Me? I don’t even have cats to look after and my car doesn’t need washing every other day.
I have a cleaner who suffers from obsessive compulsive disorder who changes my sheets for me and if she feels manic, she will do my laundry on Wednesdays.
I hopscotch to work and at weekends I can do what I want when I want and how I want. I only have myself to answer to and of course The Almighty, but that’s about it.
Sometimes I feel the need to be submissive.Is this just a phase or something only somebody who works with anaesthetic gasses experience?
Is there such thing as escaping from freedom?
How Do You Know?
I found out today that at least 5 people knew about my little ordeal last Saturday night.
I was sneaking into the stationary cabinet (so huge I can hide in there among those blood forms, pens, tip-exx, markers, you name it), when Nicky booed me from behind also later, proding about the same thing.
(She recently had blisters of cold sore and was told they are called herpes. She spent the whole 12 hour shift surfing the net about herpes and was most unhappy).
So you’ve recovered from the flasher then Naj?
I heard a guy got his willy out in Baracuda, you feeling better?
Oh It’s awful what that jerk did to you isn’t it?
I can’t remember the few others, but Nicky did say that people in that region possibly marry cousins, that’s why they’re a bit of an eejit.
The truth is when I actually agreed to go out with Rachael the Filipino single mum and Nancy the exotic sylphlike Tobago nurse (she danced like a wind), I didn’t know that the place we were going also entertain dimwits.
I was happily minding my own business when Batman and Robin merged out of nowhere trying to finish my sentences. I had a 12 hr shift earlier that day, so it wasn’t really ‘happy hour’ for me. Was out for the company and good music on top of already promised to be the driver for the night.
I turned away, at which point I think every achy joint in my body was saying ‘sod off’ and let the girls do the talking. Little that I know, the whole time, one of the superheroes did the ‘locomotion’ right behind me. I saw the girls going funny algae colour. Rachael didn’t finish her drink and ushered us all out.
The only place close to descent that night was the Chicago Rock, albeit pretty marble WCs without water coming out from any of the taps. On one corner a guy was having a romantic KFC- ‘finger licking good’ moment with a girl whom I am most certain was in the loo queue earlier. Couldn’t help but wonder how long the taps been out of order for.
In the car, going home later that night, they told me what actually happened in Baracuda, after repeatedly reminding me, I must keep my hands on the steering at all time.
Was not livid, maybe because didn’t actually see him doing the offence. I didn’t know.
But what I know is, no more Baracuda.
All of a sudden, I feel like standing up and sing the National Anthem..
Tanah tumpahnyaaaaa daaarahkuuu.
My logic says I miss home.
Wednesday, February 09, 2005
GONG XI FA CHAI.
must come to an end.
It might as well be today.
Things might as well start today.
I am still a bit stunned by many things,
Some things still not silting at the bottom.
but when a rooster goes cock-a-doodle do,
you've got to just buckle up, rise and shine,
and leave all that scare the shit out of you and move on.
GONG XI FA CHAI! *crackle*crackle*pop*pop*
May you get many many red packets.
Tuesday, February 08, 2005
How Was Your Day?
I was truly livid, words just poured out like a torrential monsoon in December in Kelantan, and it’s well overdue. It wasn’t the first and I am sure it won’t be the last.
I feel like reaching out,
or at least to have a terra firma to stand on, to support if there’s not a single rope fed down for me to reach anymore. I feel like I am sinking deeper and deeper.
My emotions have been playing Musollini with 50% DNA that of Hitler’s, instead of democratic self lately.
or maybe just a firm, sturdy something that would be my sang-froid,
one that doesn’t use every minute detail from the sanctity of a friendship/relationship to electrocute the other party involved.
I was so mad I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry so I swore to
myself,at myself, and;
at the pink rice – I intially put an egg in the rice to boil like
Cik T used to do and it had a pink barcode/expiry date stamped in red,
at my already coffee stained textbook - this time I stained it with
ejaculations from a pink grapefruit,
at the digestive biscuits- it was a cheap ASDA brand which doesn’t stay hard for very long possibly not made for dipping in a hot cup of tea and collects at the bottom of the mug like sewage,
and to say the least at anything and everything even the AOL connection
which was at it’s most spastic semester.
Whatever happened to ‘Hi, how was your day?' Civilized enough noh?
Plain but objective. Sincere or not, that is not for anybody to judge.
At least it doesn’t leech your good sap.
How would one know?
Since things snowballed into a great big round boulder like that in Indiana Jones, where it rolled and rolled and never really got to him, I tell you what a shit day it already was even before some people made it any shittier.
I, being quite junior in this job, by regulations stipulated by the
Royal College of Anaesthetists am not allowed to put any bodies below
10 years of age, on my own.
It’s illegal. I’ve done it before but that was after all grounds covered and the consultant was thoroughly happy for me to do so.
I turned up at 01:00 pm thinking I was just going to supervise a few newbies. Oh well, it’s not NHS if things work exactly as initially planned. I was surprised to be given a list of little people to put to sleep instead.
Surely there’s a mistake.
Rang the secretary and she rightly said, any problems ring Dr.B.
Oh what does she know. Saw them all kids in a room, and of course they all carry these blank faces as though the world is going to end in an hour’s time and needles are either going to kill them or amputate the whole arm. Wasn't sure if I should feel more petrified.
The smaller the patient the worse the calculations,
and the more maths involved the more I have to use my brain.
Went back to the OR and saw the assistant for the day. Always smiling, chatty, single,happy, a non- energy vampire, Kerry. I love being around her. We normally talk about books, travelling and great people. But most times about sex,
she that is.
I rang Dr.B to get him to come over and linger to make things legal,
albeit things will still carry on as if he’s not there. When he didn’t
answer his pager after 20 minutes, thinking 'it's not like I've not done it before', told another anaesthetist what I was up to, and I cracked on.
First, I had to have a second go at putting the cannula in
( the plastic tube with the needle inside) –I had one myself before, mamagrandpapa pain I tell you. So that wasn’t a good start.
This boy, half black half white bless him was such a lovely 8 year old,
but he was just soo tensed and wriggled soo much, I missed.
Sorry I busted your vein Jesse.
Second attempt I was more determined that I said,
I am going to put mum to sleep instead if you move and I miss again.
It was intended as a joke. Jesse grinned.
Mum was standing there watching her only son, put to sleep, helpless and distressed.
Seeing that look on her face, I wasn’t sure if that was a clever thing to say, but it helped to simmer the quickly inflating tension. Everyone broke into small short laughter, and the boy cooperated. I got it in. Hurrah!
I was getting up from a kneeling position when, like a see-saw, mum flopped to the floor and banged her head on the trolley.
Now boy cried, Kerry gasped, the assistant with tight tunic and too much make up flapped and I was stunned.
Boy cried wanted mum. Shouting.
Mummy wake up!!!!
There was enough madness and chaos in that room to make my hands tremble
and feellike they weren’t mine.
To cut it short, mum suffers from'
Instead of 1, had 2 patients to look after. Boy had his operation,mum recovered after tea and digestives and lots of
oh you poor thiiiinggg...it must be horrible.
Me? Dr.B was speechless after I reported it to him, I finished the list
despite the initial drama and I had to carry on like nothing happened, but
my expanded self just wanted a, ‘How was your day’ or nothing at all if people are going to be nasty to me.
Anaesthetists are people, people have feelings, so I have feelings too.
Thoughts for the day: No parents should be allowed in the anaesthetics room,
and I wonder if I should drug these children way in advance, so that
they are so stoned they just let you have the whole arm to poke.
Pure joke ok mums out there, it's a joke. Breath now.
Monday, February 07, 2005
Don't Read It
The intensity is like a red, hot, freshly vomitted larvae from the Karakatoa. Thick, boiling and deadly. I can feel it even in my tiniest daintiest veins. Ever felt like you can really hurt somebody?
My attempt at finishing the exam questions online crumbled at the bottom of the feel good ladder. Now slumped like an abandoned, used parachute. It was hijacked and I am not happy at all.
When you plan the evening to be a quiet one, with you and the MCQ questions flirting with yeses and nos, with a hot mug of tea and honey, you don’t expect an e-tsunami in a form of ‘verbal’ abuse to pour out of the yahoo messenger do you?
Some evil, manipulative, simpleton bridging into moronic behaviour of some individuals got me all worked up. God knows what drives these sort of people to probe and pry into people’s lives stirring little eddies of hatred, jealousy, and all the evilesque propaganda which is not only such a waste of time to the person on the receiving end but also for their own godforsaken souls. Breath now.
Hear me. In this world, we all vibrate in certain frequencies. If you feel shit one day, you would be vibrating at say, 20 Hz, low and depressed. When you are happy, you vibrate at a higher frequency. We all have an inert natural frequency, which is at a higher value, say 50 Hz.
We all are naturally happy people. When you cause yourself to vibrate and match this high natural frequency, you will vibrate at your maximum, you will get a high, elated, you enter orgasm. Breath. I could scream now, can I scream? I'll cry then.
However, it’s what you deduce from events and recurring things that cause bad emotions and illbeing. When you walk in a Tesco, you transmit these bad frequencies to people around you. Sooner or later, they would catch up with this and match to their own vibrations, they will feel as low. Do I say the F word now? No maybe not, it's not suitable. Breath. Say some more good stuff.
Even when you talk on yahoo messenger, you can tell if the person you are talking to is weighing you down or lifting your spirit up. How they are vibrating at the other end. If it is somebody you know for a while and you put trust in them, you vibrate with them on certain frequencies, it doesn’t help does it, having the person vibrating at the other end at some godforsaken rock-bottom frequency constantly, yakyakyakyak...draining every single kilojoule you've got left after a hard day at work? Expecting you to vibrate at that level? Tak penat ke?Throws hands up in the air.
If that's the only thing they do, it's fine with me, but to say this, and that, ( thought really hard before replacing the words with mere this and that) ,
to blackmail, to pepper the wound of the past with threats, to accuse and assume, to interrogate, to make me do this and that only because I was so willing to do it before, to pretend you know me better than I know myself, to curse, to probably lie as well?
What is it really that I have ever done to you?
Are you dim??
My dad never even said Oi, never lift a finger, never ever, let alone the above. What makes you think you have the rights? If you have issues with your self esteem, see a shrink. We all have our own demons to fight with, and I am no exception. But yours probably feeds on elephants and dinasours. I am sick and tired of hobbling along. I am trying so hard not to use the word. That word. That very word. Breath.
No you can’t, because, then it’ll be so wrong and you’d be that low, as low as whoever you are so pissed off with. Vibrate higher now, higher. You're winning, you're winning.
How I wish you and you marry each other because you so deserve each other and never ever bicker and monger people about. Don’t you have better things to do? Potentially 6 F word there.
If you feel low, make yourself high. Go make yourself look pretty, why take it out on people who want to stay happy? Why bring them down with you? If you want to have men drooling at your feet, make it happen for you, you don’t have to Bawang Merah somebody else for being herself.
If you want a girl go woo her, why do you have to Rapunzel her? If you want to be the hottest player in town, go do it, there’s always castration failing all remedies for gonorrhoea. What’s stopping you?
I am not a writer so I am no good at getting messages across on paper. You could ask me how much oxygen there is in a dl of blood but that’s about it. I am pretty useless most times when it comes to this hullabaloo. Never interest me.
If I could come out stronger, fiercer and canny, I would. But I am just not that good but what I really want to say is I am above angry and oh so help me God.
I wish you win the lottery soon and never ever ever ever bother me again. Eat your own words and pooh them out and eat them again. You know rabbits? They do this.
God bless these people, and God bless the children coming out from their vaginas.
Oh also please God make their penises blister each time they wank and make them walk like an ostrich with haemorrhoids so I know next time.
Thank you God for the 21% oxygen. Breath out. Sod all with MCQs I'm off to bed.
Ain't Got No Life?
So one should stop arguing with the Expanded Self, (found in everyone, not sold at any usual supermarket). The one that we all talk to when we're hungry, sad, happy, confused, weary, joyous, and in my case, up to 250,000 times a day.
On a bad day Expanded Self might even qualify the act of butchering someone with a blunt kitchen knife. On a good day, Expanded Self might verify why one should just go up to somebody and give him a long toe curling brain exploding snog. Do it! Do it! Do it!
But we dont', I don't. Because we can choose. I found a new catalyst for warding off the former thoughts,
switch on the CD player, volume full blast, put the bass on,
Hop on to the table,
take your clothes off,
hands in the air,
wriggle your butt and sing with meeeeeee !!!!!!
Do the Muller life Nina Simone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Poke You, Poke Me, Poke Who?
After the initial 90% of my actual workload putting the woman to sleep, I was sat at the head end of this obese woman lying there with both her legs up in the air, in a pair of stir-ups. The SpR, bless him, clad in scrubs, hat and mask, started to suck out through the vagina- with a machine driven suction. The description unfortunately stops here because it’s unfair to go into meticulous details of how it was all done.
Flup! A humanoid lizard size clot whizzed out and dunked into the container. Not a beautiful sight. Made me feel fuzzy for a nano second.
I was doing my usual squiggle squiggle on the anaesthetic record, when I came to the SURGEON: _______ bit of the empty cells. I know his name is Stephen and he’s originally from Zimbabwe. What’s his surname?
So, you can imagine me trying to catch his eyes in order to ask him, which were the only thing visible just above the woman’s bush. It looked like a tumbleweed from here.
Imagine looking down the woman’s front horizontally. There was a stark contrast between the woman’s thighs and his face and the white of his eyes which made me thought of United Colours of Benetton. His brows arched, frowned, skewed, parted, converged, it was like watching a Chinese acrobatics. Look up..look up.
He was too immersed in the act of douching, rendered all my efforts to attract his attention futile.
I couldn’t shout across because my voice would just get dissolved in the gruesome sounds of the sucker machine. Sharon, my little helper approached the Aestiva3000 with a sticker “SCARY” where I was glued to. There’s 5 of these machines in the complex. Some sad (previously thought as clever) soul, named them after the Spice Girls and we’re all obliged to call them by their baptised names.
Sharon saw my pen stuck at the column and telepathically disappeared to get the name from the register. She came back in no time with her head squeezed through the double door and shouted; (she must have carried an object illegal to be seen with in theatre).
"Poke You"! Which was just about audible.
"Whaaa"? I didn’t shout back, this is the beauty of the word what. You can open your mouth wide and people know they have to repeat themselves.
“Poke Me”? I said in stop-messing-about-Sharon tone.
Paul, who is another theatre assistant, now got excited.
“Poke Who”? He looked serious, as if taking it as an order from a higher authority.
“No, Poke You”, Sharon smirked.
Paul’s face lit up. “You want to poke me”? A clamour building up.
The above was orchestrated and amplified 10X due to the vigorous shouting, it’s just impossible for the surgeon himself not to hear any of it.
Mr. Stephen Poku, distracted by the pandemonium, floored the on off pedal and looked up above the bush. The theatre level of noise pollution zeroed.
“It’s pronounced as PowKu ..pee-oh-kay-yu, and my dad didn’t know I was going to be a Gynaecologist”.
Nonchalantly , he floored the pedal again and continued, as if it’s a phrase he’s recited many a time before , when caught and asked for his name while fumbling in between a woman’s legs.
Sharon nudged me and we all broke into a frantic laugh. By the end, I was half crouched, tonic-clonic semi toppling, restraining my half squawking half pertussic cough. Sharon poked me so hard I nearly toppled. I had to squat and continue to fit in giggles because my stomach was hurting so badly.
Friday, February 04, 2005
Read and Read Again.
I said "sorry I haven't phoned you because I've been busy with ________(insert the bluff here)". Yet I have enough time to blog. True, I am guilty. We never have enough time, none of us, we can only make time. Read between the lines and one shall be enlightened.
If only my Smith and Aitkenhead Textbook of Anaesthesia is as colourful as that book there, as catchy as that book there, as entertaining as that book there at the end and as thrilling as this book here.
If only Smith and Aitkenhead consulted Ed Monkton and make lighter books. And if only I could swap this to another book because I have stained this one with coffee. I don't know how I did it, but this page is sticking out like a sorethumb, very brown and manky. Eughhhh!
Dr.B was talking about the logbook.
“You must must do back up. I couldn’t beliiieeeevvvveee how obtuse some of you can be. You play with your computer when you’ve not done any sodding backups whatsoever”, one short huff and a sharp glance at me.
Steady….steady old man.
The boys listened on, they must be having second thoughts about being here. I should have stayed there instead of this holocaust camp. I saw one looking like that.
I am normally observant about how people talk, dressed, smile, their teeth, their hair, and of course how they smell, but things around me didn't really zoom in very well. Something else was occupying my mind. It was a letter. A very long letter flicked through my mail box this morning. Neatly typed and sealed.
I read the first page, just before leaving the flat. It was an effortless read. It’s just the right consistency, not pushy but not too cryptic. Straight to the point but yet elaborate enough, allowing me to create a snapshot of how the writer was feeling. If it’s a river, it’d be one with honey, and if it was something hot for supper, it’d be Grandy’s chicken porridge.
I was consumed by the simplicity of it but I am still marvelling at how spellbounding the content was. Never before I was described as perfect as that yet as simple as that, and at the same time as rewarding as that, yet as untouchable as that to somebody, and all that just by being me. All I’ve ever given was time and words of no where near one would call a wisdom, but you have framed the words I uttered into a string of white, beige and grey pearls. Very humbling.
I took stole a glance at the letter, peeking from my sling bag. Teasing me to pick up and read again.
“Isn’t that right Dr.Ahmad?”
All thoughts disintegrated, I am back in the seminar room. I need to stay in this room.
Dr.D started his powerpoint slides.
“Now you must must calibrate the machine to two points. One to the atmosphere and one to the sphymomamamamama yayayayay blahblahblahblahblah…..”
I wonder why the skin behind his ears is so dry.
I trace the groove on the seminar table. The vertical blinds on the window behind Dr.D started to bellow.
Reading the letter, gave me a feeling akin to that being craned up to the sky and plummet into a gigantic bath, full of all the citrus known to mankind from the forbidden garden. Soaked and lathered, rinsed to leave any epidermis , aseptically cleansed, any soul reborn and refreshed.
If there is one thing impossible that I could wish for, it would be to be able to feel what you feel. I feel you, and I understand, but only to the 6th floor. Even if I could extricate myself from this lift, I am not sure if I could climb the stairs to the next level up. I’m all cobwebbed.
It’d dishonest and malicious of me, upon realizing my capacity of uninstalling negativity and installing positivity , or lack of it, to still benefit from your friendship.
“I don’t deserve you”, has been subconsciously sowed into this fertile hippocampus. Having said that, anything can be sowed and grown on it.
That axiom, lingers. It’s like listening to a hypnotic cling-clang of the wind-chime. When there’s a wind it will frolically intrude and make you listen, even if you know that’s not what the sounds of the open field is like or is all about , but when the wind is gone, you wish that it clings. Even just for one more time.
I’ll stop blowing, so the wind-chime can rest, so they can play in the open-field. After all I am all cobwebbed. I am sorry.