Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Warning Signs

It's been 4 days since i started to get sick. Yep! Yep! The doctor is sick. Sob! Poor little me, says my pathetic self. Been on duty without a voice, been examining patients with some bouts of cough and oh with some minutes spared to blow my nose. Where did my flu vaccine go? When will the single-dose-banana-flavored-but-tastes-like-hell antibiotic take effect? Took it upon the appearance of my early symptoms of running nose and it's been three hell days yet i dont feel better! Dimmit!

I feel embarassed examining my patients when i am sick myself. How can i effectively treat them when i cant even treat my own self? This comes from the other side of me. The arrogant one. You see when i am this sick, i have this poor control over my different personalities. They would just manifest without a warning.

In short, to shorten the duration of my symptoms, have to take another set of antibiotics. Sheesh! I forgot im working in a hospital. The one i previously took has poor coverage on hospital acquired bugs. Definitely i would go for the single dosing ones. The stubborn side of me has very poor compliance to medications.

This sickness, this apathy, multi-personality and self-pity talks are enough to tell me that i needed rest. I am no superwoman or machine who never gets sick or bugged down. My barely 5-ft frame couldnt keep up with the load that it's carrying maybe. Those 24-hour toxic duties that are almost sleepless. What about those "stressors" in the hospital administration? And they wanted us to compute for our oxygen consumption? Gimme a break! Not to forget a number of colleagues who think only of themselves and are stressors too. Heck! Im just earning as much as you are! How about those patients who have nothing but sickness to the point that i have to worry and look for their own medications or blood? Some ingrates would even act as if i owe them something. Since im a government employee? Great! Are there still a lot of you out there?

Enough! Ive had enough! My body tells me to slow down...have a break...have a kitkat. Sheesh! Now i can hear my corny side talking! Ive got nothing nice to post really. It's just that im sick and im too excited for my ever looooooooooooonged FORCE LEAVE! Wahaha can you hear that? A FORCE LEAVE. We are FORCED to leave. When will this be? Two duties away...just two duties away and ill finally rest in peace.

Oooops dont give meaning to my last line. That's morbid me talking.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Total Overhaul

Was tired from a 24-hour duty and i was too excited to reunite with my bed. To my surprise though, i went into a newly arranged room. The bed was moved to the center of the room from its previous position near the window. My cabinet's now occupying its place. Twas my sister who started to move things out maybe after that heavy downpour the other day. I heard from our helper that some of our pillows were soaked since we failed to close the windows. Well, been planning to do the moving myself a long time ago but was too tired (or timid) to do it. Thanks to the rain. Somebody did it for me.

I am so particular with the way the bed must be located in the room. I have an affinity to the wall. The cold wall gives me comfort and a sort of privacy too. Unfortunately, the bed was positioned at the center of the room and it disturbed me! Was tired yet seeing how disordered the room was since my sister failed to finish what she has started, i started to move things too. With the help of my bro, we moved the bed near the wall. However, the OC in me couldnt afford to see an unfinished job. Therefore, aside from moving the bed and changing the sheets, I started to scrub the floor, wiped the frames and tables and arranged my books too. At long last my disorganized table became a better site to look at. I felt how the room thanked me for being cleaned at. Fact is, I forgot i was tired and from duty and I also forgot the time i last cleaned the room myself. Im busy and im toxic you know.

There you go. My linens are warm and fresh. I'm from a toxic duty and been wanting to sleep since i came home from work. My bed's already calling me to sleep. Im too excited to drift to dreamworld beside another side of the room's walls!hehe

Mr. A.

Just came back from the wards. My attention was called when one of the folks of the patient i just pronounced dead was creating a commotion at the wards. Let me call him Mr. A...A for A**hole. He was having an altercation with the nurse on duty. Aside from that, he was sort of insinuating the other folks in the ward just so to gain support from them. I really dont know what he was really up to or what his point was. Point-blank, he was just being an toooot-hole! I hated his guts. I hated how he challenged and threatened the nurse. I hated how he acted as if he was in a stage play. Walking to and fro delivering his piece equipped with removing and folding of eyeglasses. Duh!?! He was a frustrated stage actor if i were to judge.

I didnt even say a word. I was just looking at him amazed why in the world was he given a chance to live. I was examining his every word. Studying his every move. I allowed him to say his piece. He wanted attention and i gave him his due. I first asked him to come inside the station for us to talk. But no. He wanted a limelight for himself. I just imagined how lacking in attention he was maybe when he was a kid.

I was concerned of our patients. He was delivering his speech in our critical care ward. He was asking for sympathy from the patients or from their folks in that area! He was talking like a politician. He acted as if he was a lawyer defending a client! I remained silent for about 3 more minutes until i realized that he had gathered enough audience for himself. More people from the other wards came to hear his piece. Where did our guards go? I saw one in uniform behind him. Also stunned, doing nothing. This time, keeping silent is no longer an excuse for me.

I hated the guard for giving us no protection. For being chickens by not being able to control Mr. A and the crowd. It took a word from me before they gathered their senses to realize that hey! We're the security guards here! The other word that Mr. A mentioned that really took my guts was media. Yep! He was threatening us that he'll be calling the media. The what? The media? And what will the media do? Sensationalize the commotion that he has created? This poor creature needs my product im telling you. I didnt fight him back. He was a potential customer.

In my most polite voice, hiding those horns and keeping my tails folded, i answered back. I'll face whoever he will bring and ill face him even up to the highest court if he likes. He was afraid of the court. He realized maybe he was never in the position to act such. He shifted topic. From the problem with the services of the nurses to how insensitive we are to our patients' death.

Eeeeengk! Eeeeeengk! Eeeeengk! Can you hear the alarms going off! This is it! I couldnt stand this statement! We? Insensitive? You bull$#*&, sonof@#$%*, a^&*hole. Do you know what you're talking about? Dimmit! Dimmit!

I answered back! Told him that he just dont know what we feel. In my most polite tone again. He answered back with another piece. He asked his "audience" if we really are feeling something! This quarrel is going to the dogs. Should i continue to tolerate him, ill never win. Should i talk back and answer his pointless ideas, i still am in the losing end. Call the police! Those chickened guards are nothing but displays. I dont wanna waste my energy on those craps. I still have a 24-hour duty to cover. I still have sick and dying patients. This guy only needs ATTENTION. PERIOD!

Hearing that we are calling the police, Mr. A suddenly got lost. I hope hell swallowed him whole. The chickened guards didnt even thought of keeping him until the police came. Sheesh speaking of another potential customers of my second product...Common sense.

I love this crap hospital! If you really want life's adventure, witness all sorts of dramas of life, we are a WOW Philippines site. Pasyal na!

Heard from a colleague that Mr. A came back the next day. Now a bit calm and sober. He now have a name that's not even worth posting in this blog. All i knew was that he was a keeper of the guns of someone with a big name. Heck! So what? A fly on top of a carabao? Care to lend a flyswatter, anyone?

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Couldnt help but notice how lost her father looked. He was 26, hmmm, 3 years my junior. Though he looked younger than his age, he too looked so innocent and pitiful. What worried me the most was her. The newborn being carried by her young father. She was just a few days old. Her mother was at home recuperating from childbirth. She was septic. A walking time bomb ticking away if not given prompt medical treatment. She was already the 3rd child of the family. Her mother was just 23.

Her father was apprised of her condition. He looked a lot worse. Who will feel great knowing that you have a dying child and your pocket have died ahead of her. Where will he get his resources? Where in the world can he find help?

I still am not numb to this kind of sight. She wasnt my patient. If i pursued pediatrics then she might have been. I was just an observer from afar. Was given a few minutes to relax at the ER after admitting our nth patient. I was feeling for her. I was feeling for their family.

Now i know the reason for my toxicity. Fate doesnt just want me to have some time to relax and be able to witness such sight to dampen my spirit. I still have a lot of lives to save. So better think of happy thoughts.

A New Journey

Travelled a little more than 2 hours to reach their place. Half an hour by land and an hour by sea. Ok, i failed to include on how long we've waited for the coastguard just so we'll be permitted to sail. On board a big pumpboat, i shifted to autistic mode when i got bored waiting for whoever that was who shall sign the manifesto. I started to play with my camphone and took pictures of whatever or whoever caught my attention.

This picture was taken before we left the shore. Reminded me of my dream of having a house by the seashore. It need not be a white sand beach. I just wanted the sound of the waves, the coolness of the breeze and the ambiance of the sea.

I was trying to read what they are thinking. At first i kinda envy their job. I, the ever beach lover got excited having that ride of my life and wanted to let that moment last a bit longer. As i observed them more keenly however, they looked bored for doing their routine work of sailing. Observing more deeper, maybe they were worried on what to feed their family for the day. Hmmm, i guess i'll just settle with my toxic life and this short break from work. At least i dont need to worry about a family to feed.

I was saddened by the way this sea water looked. This could be the result of the rampant illegal logging in the province. Oh well at least there's still a nice cloudscape to look up to.

Trying to figure out what's going to happen to us for the next hour. No back support for the seats, no cushion under our butt. It's not that im not used to this kind of life. Heck, have travelled to the mountains on a weapon carrier during one of our medical missions when i was in medical school. What im just trying to say is that, for someone who just came from the hospital for a duty, a more comfortable seat would have been a bonus.

So after an hour by the sea, we finally landed on the wharf which was just a few meters away from where she lived. Their place was a sleepy town. Time was running so slow there and what you can see were vast farmlands and fishponds. When we reached her place, she's no longer there. She was already brought to the chapel for the mass. There were a few relatives who came and some neighbors too. Heared not a single sound of someone crying while the mass was going on. Her family and friends might have already accepted her fate.

The only time that ive seen her family and friends crying was when her coffin was about to be brought to the funeral car. I dont want to witness such sight. I made sure to include in my death plan that i dont want to see anyone crying in my grave.

We travelled under the heat of the sun for a few minutes before we reached the cemetery. That was very humid during that time. I was sweating like hell and i felt so sticky. We joined the other mourners in a jeepney. Just when i was all sweating, i had a free powder from the road dust coming from the jeepney's windows. I would have enjoyed this better if it was not humid. I love to travel and i love to sweat but to feel like you're in a large sauna? Whew! What i was experiencing that time reminded me that ill be submitting my leave forms when i get back to the hospital. Been tempted to join the Amazing Race Asia...hehe

We finally brought her to rest. Her journey here on earth ended after 29 years and off she was to another chapter. I may not know what lies ahead of her but witnessing how her family and friends loved her made me think that wherever she may be, she's happy with the kind of life that she had and will be having. I just hope that she'll continue to live in peace.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

THANKS TO YOU (For my Parents: for keeping up with me)



Dined out with the whole family tonight. We had an advance celebration for my parents 30th wedding anniversary tomorrow. I definitely couldnt join them tomorrow for ill be on another 24-hour duty. Part of the job. Good thing my family's kinda used to it already. I'll be missing out important events or celebrations most of the time to the point that i no longer feel holidays.

My parents have been together for 30 years! Whew! Im posting it here for i admire how the two of them lasted each other's company.hehe Seriously, im just so thankful being blessed with the kind of parents that i have. Aside from blogging, my parents are my living emotional vent when things in the hospital's tearing me apart. I remembered how they have witnessed me crying my heart out because of disappointments with the people around me. They were there to comfort me when i'd be affected by my patient's death. They were the first people who supported my plan of pursuing residency training in this institution. They were also the ones who assured me that twas not just me who was prepared for whatever consequences that this training in this government hospital might bring me. Fortunately or unfortunately, they were also the ones who contributed to my toxicity. How? What with those prayers everytime that i go on 24-hour duty, that the patients would go to the hospital because i was the one on duty? I discovered this when my dad comforted me while i was whining during one of our family dinners. I was too full of my toxicity that time that twas already reaching the limit of my tolerance gauge. Hearing dad however say that i should feel better because God must have trusted me so much to entrust His people under my care, made me feel worse. This was what he was always been praying everytime im out for a duty. Sheesh! He should have prayed instead that his daughter be given a time to rest...haggle it even for just one duty a month maybe? Rationalization however tells me that there nothing wrong with dad's prayer anyway. Maybe he and God believes in me more than my pathetic self.

For 29 years, my parents have been there for me. The reason too that i couldnt be so obviously wicked are them. I always hear good things about them that the least that a child like me could do was never to taint their name. These fellows have worked themselves up and ive witnessed their hardwork to keep our family. Couldnt help but admire them for this.

Though having a family of my own is still a blur for me, i just wish that ill have the kind that's like my immediate family. I just hope though that i have acquired my parents' patience and commitment to stay in the relationship. By the time that the Haley's comet becomes visible on earth, i surely have it already. This is the time that i promised expectant friends that ill get married. Well, I still have enough time to develop this patience until 2062.hehe

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Live and Let Die

Came from a 24-hour duty today. Since it's a Saturday and I was entitled with a half-day off from work, I spent the whole afternoon with two members of my BCS group. In case you might be wondering what BCS stand for, it's Batchoy Club and Support Group. The name sounds ridiculous. Batchoy Club?haha Well, the details of the said group deserves another entry.

Now back to my afternoon break, we had a late lunch in a Chinese Resto. After having our fill, we spent a few minutes at the mall's appliance center looking at cameras and televisions. Well, just to let the food that we ate get digested before we take our seats in the theater. Yep! After the eating session, we watched Shrek 3. I'm not going to make a movie review here. It's just that i liked the movie's soundtrack particularly this song in the video above and from where this post's title came from.

But if this ever changin world
in which we live in
Makes you give in and cry
Say live and let die

A few hours before this break from work, i was about to breakdown in the wards. I was dead tired and yet i have to make rounds to a number of patients - not my patients to be more specific. I dont know if it's just me who's toxic but sometimes, life really isnt fair on me. Oh well, who says it is? Ok, maybe im not fair with myself. Life's been good and beautiful but when it comes to work, it's different, believe me.

I'm already in my senior year yet i feel that im more tired when i am from duty compared when i was just starting residency training. I dont think it's age, but it's more of having a bigger responsibility now. For this month, i had to cover for several days for my junior. I had to once again make rounds at the wards like when i was in first year. Good thing if i dont have an ICU to make rounds with, or meetings to attend to. Things simply are getting into my nerves. Sometimes, they almost tempt my tearglands to produce some droplets of tears just so to let this thing out of my system. Unknown to me, my tears are i guess light sensitive. They dont come out when im exposed in broad daylight.

Today, my junior wasnt feeling well that i have to make rounds with her patients. As a senior i felt that it was a better thing to do though i felt bad doing it at first. Been in her state also and i could never remember a time though that my senior covered for me when i was really in bad shape. I went on duty at the ER without a voice and made rounds while having fever. The only time that i was absent for a day was when i couldnt take those tendinitis - well, also a result of overwork.

So there i was the whole day swimming in self-pity. Goodness, i never realized how pathetic i could get when i lacked sleep! I was irritated and i wanted to cry. The heck with those tears though, they cant lessen the number of patients that i have to visit. I wanted to shout on how unfair life could be sometimes. The heck with complaining, it just added insult to my pathetic self.

The remaining sane neurons that i have might have worked doubly hard to keep my composure. Instead of wallowing in self pity, i planned what i have to do to make my job a bit easier. Life might have pitied me too that i had 3 interns who came to help me out with the rounds. Whew! The whole time i was making rounds, i was thinking of a prize that i would reward myself after a hard day's labor. I deserve a break. A good break.

So there, after a hearty meal, we went to watch Shrek 3. I'm this cheap. Just feed me and give me some entertainment and i'll be ok. The reason why this song got into me was because this was what's being played when we entered the cinema. And the lyrics? Oh, it's so timely.

What does it matter to ya
When ya got a job to do

Ya got to do it well

You got to give the other fella hell

I have a job to do and i have to do it well. I did do it well. I realized that no matter how tough my work could get, i know that i just have to live and let die. Who has been talking about living life everyday to the fullest anyway? Even if it seems that life could be unfair, i just have to think about reward conditioning. Doing the job and rewarding myself when the job get's done. As a result, it makes the work a lot easier. Nothing beats working with a happy and light heart.

By the way, who's the other fellow though that i have to give hell to? Of course no other than my other pathetic self. I just hope that she'll rest in peace.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

A Business Proposal 2

Yep! I have another business proposal. You see, i was able to gather a lot of partners for my previous business proposal. They realized how rich we could get if this will push through. Attention is quite a very important commodity these days just like air.

As for this 2nd proposal, i was able to think about this when i realized that there are a lot of problems that are happening in our wards. Most of these problems are products of a lack of one's COMMON SENSE. Only if most of the people here especially a number of our nurses, would have this, then my life would have been simpler and happier.

If i would consult encarta about it's definition, COMMON SENSE is a sound practical judgment derived from experience rather than study.

A what? SOUND...PRACTICAL...EXPERIENCE. Wa-wait...Lemme digest it's definition again. SOUND...PRACTICAL...JUDGMENT...EXPERIENCE.

Eureka!!! This is really what this hospital needs! Goodness! If i were to review the series of cases that pushed me to pursue this business proposal, most of the nurses who committed some blunders are those who have stayed in this institution for several years already. Most have been here for some 10 years or so. Yet, look at how they perform in the wards. Im not generalizing but a number of them really have poor judgment. It's like their judgment isnt congruent with their number of years of experience. In short, if i were to make an equation out of it:


A negative common sense. In other words, absent, nil, wala, uncommon sense.

So! If i will be able to sell common sense and make it as a commodity, definitely a lot of sectors from the government to business will surely be interested of this product. Who could take an employee who cant give a good judgment in whatever job assignment that he/she has? This will improve employees performance and would even result to efficiency at work. No employer shall also be fuming with anger because of a poor judgment committed by his employee. No doctor will get irritated because of unnecessary referrals by a nurse who has a good sense of judgment and assessment. This will also result to peace and harmony in one's workplace. Now, who wouldnt be working in a peaceful and harmonious environment?

My product however will expire in a year's time. In short, the subscriber or customer has to repurchase it. I'm thinking about my future too you know. If all the people have acquired common sense in the future, who will still be buying my product then?

Monday, May 14, 2007

Death Plan

Went to the chapel where she was laid to pay her a visit. She looked better now compared to the time we first found her dead. She looks like she's only having her precious sleep. Only, she's no longer bound to wake up. Not anymore.

Saw all the flowers and mass cards around her coffin. Talked with her closest relatives. They were all surprised by her untimely demise. She wasnt able to leave a word. She didnt even show some signs that she's leaving. Though she has been ranting about life and on how she wished she was dead to her close friends, those were not taken seriously. In a toxic institution that we are in, talks about death is not uncommon.

Her loss was an opportunity for me to review my plans...my death plans. Yep! Been keeping one. I even have my own last will and testament. I realized though that if i keep my death plans, then most likely my family will not be able to accomplish it. I couldnt rely on my friends' memories too during our morbid talks. They might forget the details. So i've come up with my list and im posting it online. Should my time come, at least i already immortalized it here. tee-hee!

1. If i were to make a wish about the kind of death that i would have, i would also want to die in my sleep. You know, the kind that you only slept the night before and it just happens that you forget to wake up the next day. Must be the reason why i always wear my nice sleeping attire on. I travel with my intimate apparels in pairs too. You can never tell when death will meet you, right? I would surely be embarassed as a spirit looking at my dead body being undressed with ugly undies on! Disgusting!

2. I dont want to die at an old age. You know the kind when you could no longer attend to your needs. I dont want to make other people's lives miserable by taking care of me. Yep! To the point that i need someone to assist me when nature calls? Nah! Not until this time. Sad to say though, only good people die young. The reason i guess why im struggling to be good. I'm starting to keep those tails and to hide those horns. Promise!

3. Should people find me dead or dying, i dont want to be resuscitated. Intubation's a no-no. I cared for these precious whites of mine with my visits to my dentists (note: irregular visits). They arent supposed to be severed because of intubation. And oh, chest compressions? Goodness! I dont want to get hurt anymore. If i may be found dead in my sleep, then let me sleep for eternity. Dont break my bones just so to resuscitate me. I'd rather die with an intact sternum than be alive with a flail chest.

4. I wanted to be cremated. Really! Been talking about this with friends and even to my mom. She doesnt agree with me. The Catholic church dont believe in cremation she said for during the second coming, our soul shall go back to our earthly body. HUwaaaat? My soul going back to my worm-infested, foul-smelling dead body??? Can you imagine the corpse bride? Nuh-oh! I wanted cremation! Actually, mom's point of view has changed now. I guess im already starting to convince her that cremation's already accepted. By the way, about the reason for cremation? 1. I dont want to be seen "dead". What i wanted those people ill be leaving behind to remember is my alive self. Not my funeral parlor made up self. 2. I dont want to lie down inside that cold coffin and wait for the worms and decomposers to consume me when ill be buried 6 feet under. Lastly, i wanted a taste of hell when ill be cremated so that ill appreciate heaven even better.hehe

5. Instead of flowers or mass cards, i wanted cash. Cash for charity. I would like to donate it to the patients of our ward. What can flowers do? They cant even save me should i deserve to be punished. At least, my death would be quite meaningful for ill be extending lives still even when im already at rest. I cant bring those flowers with me. Should the cash be donated to our ward, a lot of lives will surely treasure the help for eternity.

6. No crying. No mourning. Yep! I dont want my parents, my mom especially, to cry. Should they cry, i wanted to see tears of joy. Joy that finally, ill be going home. I wanted to assure them and you reading this, that when that time comes, i am ready and i have embraced death wholeheartedly. In short, be happy for me. I will surely be saddened leaving you guys behind. It's just that i only had an ealier flight. We'll still have our reunion.

7. No sad music please. Call it weird. Let other people comment but i dont want some "Hindi kita malilimutan" rendition. Upbeat music would be preferred. "Staying alive," a better alternative...hehe

8. No tributes for me. This would only serve as a venue for others to cry even harder. Also, I find these tributes corny. Really! It's kinda ironic to pay tribute to someone who's already dead. I believe that should you want to express kind words to anybody, let him/her hear it while she's still alive. The reason why i wanted to live my life each day as if it were my last.

Whew! If i'll continue with my list, i might be able to make my longest post ever. Hmmm, if blogger has a limit, i might even be able to reach it. These basically are the essence of my death plan. If i happen to forget something, feel free to leave a comment to remind me. By the way, dont you worry. I still cant feel it coming. So long as im in this institution, i still havent been good. Only good people die young, right?

Saturday, May 12, 2007


The conclusion of my 24-hour duty being alone was a very dramatic event. Early in the morning today, life within the hospital stopped for an hour or two. A young pediatric resident was found dead in her bed inside the hospital dormitory. Being the only medical resident on duty, it was i who pronounced her unexpected demise.

I, the once cry-baby, now has dyfunctional tear glands. I have observed for several years now that i havent cried for someone's loss. Not even that of a very close relative. I did feel the absence but i was numbed, not feeling the pain of losing someone. This could be the reason why this event happened during my tour of duty. I have a good control of my emotions. I pronounced the unexpected death with dry eyes. When everyone else's were crying inside the emergency room, i was seated at the counter, feeling detached.

I could see myself sitting on a stool, witnessing the drama in front of me, looking sympathetic. Deep inside though, i couldnt recognize what i feel. What i can only understand is that what i was feeling that time was not enough to prompt my tear glands to function. My emotions might have drifted away from my body thus making me numb about what happened.

Detachment is one of my coping mechanisms especially when i started residency training. What with those deaths i have to witness almost everyday? My first few months in training were quite hard until i knew how to be detached when this event comes. I have to struggle on some episodes of depression for a patient's loss. I would really be affected by my patient's deaths. As i grow more mature and older though in this profession, i started to practice this coping mechanism.

As a doctor, I believe that when everyone else's become weak and emotional, someone has to be strong and more objective. It's like acting as a pillar for everyone as they start to crumble. This has been my role in both my family and friend's circle. People think that i am as strong and hard as a stone. Little do they know that i am just acting strong for them. If not for being able to master being detached, i too could create a well of my tears.

This coping mechanism is i guess quite healthy so long as you know how to channel your emotions. If i dont cry in public it doesnt mean that i am not capable of crying. My tear glands were just programmed to function when im alone and in the dark. If i may not be able to express what i feel verbally, this blog actually would suffice. I'm not promoting blogging, am i? Seriously, i find blogging as my emotional vent and this helps me remain sane.

What i was feeling today was a mix of emotions. The feeling of loss, grief, pity, happiness, everything else, except fear. Loss for another member of the dwindling medical staff has to go that early. Pity and grief for those she left behind especially for her parents and friends. They were not prepared for her loss. Pity for her future pediatric patients. She could have been one of best pediatricians in town. Happiness for finally, she'll be home. Finally, she had her rest. She'll be relieved of the 24-hour duties. Relieved of toxicity from this hospital. Relieved from her responsibilities. She too was a chief resident. Yet here i am, still struggling to keep my balance. Juggling my time with all the responsibilities that i carry upon my shoulder.

Why the absence of fear? I believe that death is inevitable. This is one event that we also should welcome in our lives. Call me morbid but i could talk about death, specifically my own without feeling uncomfortable. We all shall die. This is something that we too shall prepare for. I guess it's just like getting married. You too dont know what lies after the ceremony. Both have heaven and hell. Well, more analogies shall be reserved in another post. What i just wanted to say is that i am not afraid of death - in both sides. Either it's i who will be left or i who will be leaving. So long as i live each day as if it were my last, i dont think that i'll remain unprepared for anybody's death, even that of my own. So, should i talk about my own death, dont accuse me of having suicidal ideations. I am just this open-minded with this topic. Actually, i have made a death plan already. Yikes! When my contemporaries were doing wedding plans, this is what i am preparing. Hmmm, is this enough to tell you that i welcome death more than getting married?hehe

Friday, May 11, 2007

When I Grow Older

When i was a kid, i dreamt of becoming a doctor. A doctor who will treat the sick. My parents were aware of this but they didnt take me seriously. Kids could dream whatever they wanted so they thought. Actually, when i was a little bit younger, i dreamt of becoming an astronaut. Besides, how can they be so sure too that i would really be pursuing this dream when i was fond of reading not my textbooks but comic magazines? I dont know if you're familiar with funny komiks. I was more into arts too - sketching, painting and the like.

As i reached high school, i became interested with technology. The personal computers during those times were the kind that use casette tapes as data saving devices. The screens were then colored green. I was fond of tinkering with those stuffs and troubleshooting. My parents were relieved that at long last, i seem to have forgotten that childhood dream. Sending a kid into medical school is no joke. They were thinking that i was just joking when i dreamt to become a doctor. During this time, i was also fond of literature. Science was never in my extra curricular subjects. In short my parents were expecting that their eldest daughter shall end up in the field of computers or in journalism.

Everything changed though a few months before i graduated. We were applying for a college course in different universities. I had a lot of things to consider during those times before i selected the course that i would like to apply on. I had to consider my family's financial status. I had to consider what i really liked doing the most. Eventually, i applied for a Bachelor of Science in Biology. This started to give my parents some creeps. The childhood joke i had before was actually no joke. This decision too was no joke on my part. Twas a leap of faith, a dive into the impossibilities.

Okay, enough for such a long introduction. Now as a full-fledged doctor, am i already contented now that i have reached my childhood dream? Little did i know that everything doesnt just stop here. A doctor has a lot of opportunities to choose from. I could choose from being an academician, a specialist, a scientist, a researcher, an administrator. Whew! When i was a kid i thought that a doctor only treats the sick!

Currently in my residency training, i was exposed to the different fields of my profession. As an academician, we have interns to teach and train. We too are required to submit a research before we graduate. Tasked to lead the renegades too, i was expected to represent our chairman in his absence and the department in different administrative works and meetings. One i just attended today.

I once again witnessed another fellowship of the phonies. This time, i shall name it Fellowship of Morons. Oh, Fellowship of the Imbecile is i guess more appropriate. The word may be offensive but who in his right and mature mind be thinking of just himself and his interests? Between a 3-year old kid and a 60-year old doctor, i would expect a 3-year old would. What word would be more appropriate if it would be the other way around?

The fellowship is composed of administrators who have personal issues among themselves who placed the hospital and its patients in jeopardy because of their conflicts. I finally knew why the hospital supplies were not replenished. Why a lot of infrastructures were unfinished. Why those people in the position fight for the "throne". I now know what it takes to become an administrator. Along with the responsibility of running the hospital and its people, the administrator too has the option to be good or to be corrupt. What with the millions of pesos budget? What with the different opportunities to acquire wealth? From biddings of medicines and supplies to infrastructures, the hospital is a good venue to become a secret millionaire!

My narcoplesy attacks didnt occur the whole time i was idle, sitting and listening to the meeting in one corner. The topic got me interested. Here we are, trying to settle a conflict that actually might have arose from personal interests. An administrator who wanted the "throne" but was not given the chance, mudslinging the one on the "throne" just so to dethrone him. Both have accumulated followers and allies and they were all gathered in that conference room. Yet in the wards are our patients who are dying. Doctors and nurses who are trying their best to perform their duties to their patients yet remain to be exploited. Their work and their lives were compromised because of these imbecile's greed and selfishness.

As a renegade, i couldnt help but think of "happy thoughts". A bomb exploding inside the conference room would be enough to exterminate them. Nah. Bad idea. There are some good people in the room. It would be difficult to let them out first leaving the imbeciles behind before the bomb gets detonated. How about a poison to be included in the food that are served to them? I observed that they were given a different set of sandwiches and fruit juice. The tetra-pack 3-peso worth of juice were served to us and yet they received those in cans! Ooops, self, dont forget, you are just a mere resident yet. Let that pass. Now back to the poison, hmmm, this would be a messy job. I dont want to be exposed to these imbeciles vomitus. Ewww!

While i was having these thoughts running into my mind, i finally found my purpose. These people have masters in public administration. Why the inefficiency then? Why the corrupt practices? Why those mudslingings? After residency training, i shall train into subspecialization. I just hope my chairman doesnt read this. Neurology may not be for me. I am not taking the diplomate exam. After that meeting, i finally realized that i too shall pursue further studies in public administration. Then i shall train into another sub sub specialization. Aside from an MD, MPA after my name, i shall add another: MPAE...Master in Public Administrators' EXTERMINATION. Maybe by this time, i could think of a better way to clean up these "mess".

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

My Greatest Wish

Been absent from the blogosphere for quite some time. Have to rest my eyes and keep them away from the lcd display in front of me. You see, i acquired this corneal scar that according to the ophthalmologist i consulted to was a contact lens-induced corneal hypoxia. A what? Oh, well, whatever. I had a corneal scar and it stings like hell! That's all.

How did i get this? I dont know. All i can remember is that a little more than a week ago i went swimming in a beach without removing my cl's. Great! Dont add insult to my injury. I know. I know. Shouldnt have done it. Already heard a homily from my optometrist so im already aware where i did wrong. I felt nothing unusual after it though. Really. Even if you'll accuse me of rationalizing again. Will it take this long before i manifest my symptom if the culprit was really that swimming incident? The only significant event that i could remember prior to this was that i failed to remove my lenses before i went to sleep. Nah! Rephrase it. Before i FELL asleep. Meaning, i slept without any intention of sleeping. That's why i failed to remove my lenses. Got it? Good. In short, i woke up the next day with teary eyes - only my right eye to be specific. Aside from it, there's this foreign body sensation that stings like hell. Alright, im being redundant. Mentioned this description already from the previous paragraph. What can i do? I ran out of words and it's the most appropriate description for it. One other thing. Can i point Sandman as the culprit? Watched Spiderman 3 the night before. You know how it feels when a sand gets into your eyes, right? Sheesh! Why didnt i think about this when i went to my optometrist?

I'm now back to my geeky look. Have to suffer the inconvenience of wearing those specs. What i just cant take however is not the specs per se. I cant take what other people's impression of me when im in my specs. People's first impression about me would be that im a wide-reader, intelligent and a "goody-goody". I could take the first two for they are quite true (subtext: wide-reader - meaning i could read a wide array of reading materials...from comics to magazines to journals to blogs, and ok, textbooks. About being intelligent, hmmm, i was born as one i guess.....i need a barf bag!) but the latter, im having doubts if i am good myself. This blog knows how wicked i could get sometimes.

After wearing these specs for several days and after being held up by my ophthalmologist and optometrist for the topical antibiotics and pain-relievers and a new pair of specs, respectively, i came up with my one greatest wish. I just wish that i'll have my 20/20 vision back. You know without those astigmatism that according to my opto was very complicated. Blame my parents. They sent me to a medical school and who passes medical school without reading? Seriously, I should have heeded mom when she warned me not read while lying when i was a student. Well, actually i wasnt. Really! For during those times when mom would find me lying, im already sleeping. If i would be reading while lying, this is already a prelude to my visit to dreamworld and that would be just for a very short duration. Im rationalizing again! Ok, so as my wish will be granted, i admit that i was reading while lying. What's worse, my favorite position would be lying at the side of the bed, on my tummy, with the book on the floor. If you cant figure it out, never mind.

Oh dear fairy godmother, bring back my good vision. I know that it would take me tens of thousands of pesos for a lasik surgery but if i ask from you dear fairy, will a tooth be okay? I'm just a poor resident physician in a government hospital. You know how we are being paid. I'll trade my wisdom tooth if you like. Even all of four them - for a 20/20 vision. Pleeeeease?=P

Friday, May 04, 2007

Not When I'm Sleep-deprived

I was just starting to visit dreamworld at 6 o'clock in the morning when i received a referral that one of our patients at the private room arrested. Have to pull my consciousness out of this dreamed, dreamworld of mine just so i could attend to that patient.

He was the father of one of the employees of this hospital. In short, it's such a big deal once the resident on duty fails or would be late in attending to the patient. I came to his room right after i received the referral from the nurse. My spirit still tailing behind me. It might have just reunited with my body when i was already performing CPR.

The employee wasnt around when the event happened. The ones left were her sisters. They were afraid of her or maybe afraid to be blamed of the patient's sudden death. Thus, i have to perform the CPR for about 30 minutes. Gave her more time to digest and to accept what was happening when she came to the room, before i pronounce her father's demise. That was unexpected actually. They were expecting to be home today. Not the patient going home to heaven, alone.

She was in denial. Guilty at the same time for failing to attend to her father's needs the night before this unexpected event occurred. She was requesting her father to be back to life and to live another week more. Sheesh! She was calling his spirit to go back to his now, cold body. Good thing my spirit's now reunited with my body when this happened or else, a mixed up might have happened. My spirit inside this patient's dying body, and an old man's spirit inside a toxic resident's body who was disturbed from visiting dreamworld. Haha! I'm becoming spiritual! Only happens when im sleep-deprived.

After this "spiritual" experience, i went down to the wards. Have to give the outgoing nurse on duty a little piece of my mind. He failed to check on the progress of his patient's chemotherapy. He sort of committed a blunder. He denies though that he was at fault. I asked him to submit an incident report to explain himself.

While talking with him, one of our patient's folks created a commotion. He was shouting at the alley asking who poked his daughter's mouth and losing some of her incisors in the process. I realized that he was the father of the patient i intubated earlier. I asked the nurse to bring him to the station where i am seated. I wanted to talk to him in order to explain his patient's condition. He was hysterical to the point that he asked me to leave my seat in order for me to see his patient. He seemed to be blaming me for what ive done. What i did was a life saving measure. Noone has the right to question it.

I did not leave my seat. Instead, i asked him to come to me and to sit in front of me if he wanted some confrontations. Uh-oh! Dont provoke me when im sleep-deprived. I'm a graceful woman but never when im provoked. My voice was as high as my left eyebrow and i was seated higher than he is. He, seating on the monoblock chair and i, seated on the station counter. Look who's taller now? I just dont want to appear like David facing Goliath. He was kinda big you know? Well, it's just a matter of strategic positioning if you want to win.

Heck! I'd rather be sleepless because of a lot of admissions but never because of some altercations. My energy consumption increases and my tolerance level to its lowest threshold when im subjected to arguments much more in a sleep-deprived mode. If in case arguments arent avoided, just dont let it happen when im sleep-deprived for i'd rather wish ill talk to you in my sleep.

I Need Another Year

It's already 2:30 am and i just came back from the wards. Just got done intubating a patient who's lying on a folding bed. Despite my petite stature, twas difficult for me to intubate the patient in a kneeling position. Have to assume an "indian sit" so that i could visualize the hole i was about to poke with an endotracheal tube. Great! Just when im fresh from a bath, i have to sit on the ward's filthy floor and be exposed again to whatever droplets or secretions that the patient has.

That was quite a difficult intubation for me. One, the laryngoscope's blade was short. The epiglottis was waving at me from a distance. Second, the patient's folding bed was too low that i have to position myself in a way that i could visualize my field. Third, the patient was combative. She was hypoxemic and restless. I have to use diazepam twice to calm her down. As a consequence, some of her incisors were lost in the process. She kept on biting my blade. Good thing, not my fingers.

So basically, everything that has happened drained my energy. Here i am, already a senior resident, still wide awake, feeling sticky and icky at 3 o'clock in the morning. Nuh-uh! I'm not complaining about my job. I'm used to this kind of life. What im just trying to say here is that, granting the department shall consider this term as my last year, i still havent proven something. I guess i still need another year in order to prove to myself that heck, my resident before was really right.

You see, when i was intern, i was already toxic. My resident would usually leave me at the emergency room and i get to admit patients on my own. Maybe they trusted me enough. Sheesh they just dont know how agonizing that was being left all alone at the ER. On the brighter side, i tend to become more independent and my decision making skill was developed. As a bonus, my resident also gets a good night sleep.

In short, this thing that i wanted to prove before i leave this institution is the fact that when i was an intern, my resident assured me that i too could rest like him when i become a resident. He was just first year then. As for me, after 3 looooong years, the rest that he assured me still didnt happen. To think that im already in my senior year. Darn! Am i just soooo toxic that even in my senior year i still am awake at this wee hour of the morning? Can i just for once experience a straight-flat-on-bed sleep from 12midnight to 7 am on a 24-hour duty? Can I? Puh-leaze...whoever you are who's in control of our admissions?

Goodness! Toxicity has eaten me whole. I need to have my sanity checked. Or maybe sleep's now starting to overpower me. Im outta here!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

The Resident Boarder

It's labor day and definitely, it's a holiday. I was never out of the hospital though until a little before 5pm when my whole family fetched me from work. They came from an out of town trip to my father's place. I was just informed that they're going out of town just this morning when my mom texted me if i wanted to be fetched from the hospital before lunch. I was preoccupied with work though. Had no choice but to decline and to tell her that i cant make it with them.

Eversince i started training, this has been the set up at home. I was like a boarder who comes in and out of the house. Be out every three days for a 24-hour duty, be home wasted as from duty and the only time i'm conversant is when i'm in an on call status. Good thing my family understands the kind of life that i chose. At least my mom would be kind enough to ask me no longer if ill be coming to a family affair. It's given. I'm always at the hospital and i cant make it. My family on the other hand were made to think that i still am away from home just like when i was in medical school.

Sheesh i sound sooooo pathetic! Must be my PMS again. This post's crappy too. I just didnt have enough sleep. Alright i slept the whole afternoon and just woke up actually but it's different if you have had an uninterrupted goodnight sleep in your bed. The only time i was awake this afternoon was when i received text messages. Which reminds me, havent replied yet even to just one.

Well, here are some pics that i took when our department went out of town for the weekend to make up for this crap. After three long years in the department, we were out of the hospital. All of us! I realized that this kind of weather that we have has its benefits too. If not for this hell-like weather, our boss might not have decided to leave the city.Tee-hee!