The next morning, Rachel calls at 8 to make an appointment and the receptionist tells her that they are understaffed and she'll have to leave a message for the nurse. The nurse calls back two hours later to reiterate what the receptionist just told Rachel, though reassures her that the doctor wants to squeeze her in since she fainted. After another two hours of waiting for another phone call from the office, the receptionist finally calls back to tell her that she has to go to the hospital since she fainted. Why she couldn't just say that in the first place at 8 makes no sense to me, but that's the way her doctor office rolls.
Rachel and I head to the hospital around 2, check in with the Triage nurse and then at the Registration department and then sit for the next two hours in the waiting area. While waiting, we played Scrabble on her phone, as usual she handed my ass to me, defeating me by about 70 points. She's evil when it comes to playing Scrabble.
After waiting for two hours, a nurse comes to fetch her to take her to the hospital area. Of course, Mr. Nurse Man is
They give Rachel a gurney right next to the ambulance entrance, which meant that for the next four hours I got to witness every patient who arrived from ambulance come into the hospital. This included a young guy with tattoos up to his neck on a breathing apparatus, a guy who's arm was wrapped up under his coat, several elderly people, a pregnant woman, a woman who wouldn't stop shaking, a guy with a head wound, and a few other assorted patients whose injuries/ailments I can't even remember.
Rachel was taken away several times for a random assortment of tests, including X-Rays and a CAT scan. During these long trips, I got to people watch in the hospital, which was the equivalent of watching a horror movie. While Rachel was away, I got to witness:
- They wheeled a man out of a room who was under some heavy duty drugs. He was very unconscious with a hospital bracelet on his wrist that read "Limp Amputation." When he was rolled by me, he had all of his limbs so I think it's safe to assume that he was on his way to have an arm or leg hacked off.
- Another patient was wheeled by with an IV in her neck. That's right! In her neck. Ew!
- Two gurneys away from Rachel were two police officers from the sheriffs department chatting with a few of the nurses. The two officers were there for several hours, and it wasn't until Rachel left for her X-Ray that I realized that they were guarding a prisoner. About an hour before we were finally discharged, there was a changing of the guard. Two new officers arrived with a new pair of chained cuffs for the prisoner to be cuffed to his bed. The original set of officers walked by with their pair of cuffs. It was a very bizarre scene.
- The woman next to me had no idea what medications she takes, which I guess is common with the elderly. Her son was with her, who I think I recognized as a Stop and Shop customer, and had no idea what the hell she was on either. Poor lady.
- At the opposite end of the hallway there was a woman who wouldn't stop shaking. I think her gurney was actually moving across the hallway due to her vibrating body.
- Directly in front of us in the hallway perpendicular to us, there was a man hooked up to an IV. He got up once to use the bathroom and I made the mistake of going in after him (same sex bathrooms suck ass). Not only did he pee on the seat, but he also left a bloody piece of gauze on the ground which I almost slipped on. Later in the evening, a doctor wearing surgery scrubs, the surgery hair wrap thingy, and carrying gloves and surgical tools. Before I can fully prepare myself, she whips out her surgical tools and starts operating on the guys side in the hallway. Ugh.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I am not a fan of horror movies or blood. Hospitals are obviously not a pleasant experience for me, though I have never encountered anything quite like this hospital trip. Then again, a majority of the hospital trips I've been on, I'm usually the patient. I think this is the first hospital trip where I was the support rather than the sickly one.
During our marathon day at the hospital and Rachel's gauntlet of ER tests, we tried to keep ourselves occupied. One of the games to keep myself preoccupied was the alphabet game, where you come up with something for each letter of the alphabet. Our game consisted of the following:
I'm going on a picnic and I'm going to bring: an apple, bamboo shoots, a Christmas tree, dalmatians, egg salad, Frodo Baggins, golf balls, a hamster wheel, ink, Jen, ketchup, Linkin Park CD, map, Nigeria, octopi, panasomic tv, Rachel in her hospital gurney, a stick, twelve twigs, an umbrella, Veruca Salt, a window washer, Xrays of Rachel's chest, foot, and ankle, a yellow sweatshirt, and a zoologist.