Monday, April 17, 2006

frankenstein

This is one of those post script posts,
one that could really be filed under
"I crap you not",
or so the PG version goes...

The back story: Today I wore scrubs without any extra things to cover my throidectomy scar. My neck was commando -- full second-smile in view... because I thought it looked relatively good, to be two weeks old and all. I'm still using the Mederma and Neosporin like it's going out of style, but I really think it looks good... but I realize that being a nurse gives me a wacked-out opinion of healthcare symptom clusters.

Today one of my patients, after hearing about my recent plights with cancer and such, actually looked at me and said...
Oh! You look like Frankenstein!
And then followed with...
You know what I mean, it looks like your neck is ugly on purpose!
I crap you not. There's no real come-back for that...

But you know me, there was a come-back, but I used the one that wouldn't get me fired...

You know, the really painfully obnoxious one,
Thanks! I've never thought about it that way!

That way she could feel as guilty as I did self-conscious---
the small miracles that come from secondary education...

5 comments:

nicole said...

Let me just confirm something: you don't work in a mental hospital or senior citizen's home, do you?

Otherwise there's really NO excuse for that level of tactlessness. Where do these people COME from??

Kate said...

Wow. And this person KNEW about your battles with cancer? Oy.

genderist said...

NoNoNo... that's what doesn't make any sense about it. I work in an outpatient CHEMOTHERAPY clinic... I work with mostly cancer patients, although I do treat people with blood disorders, too.

This person was a breast cancer survivor, a relatively young woman (early 50s, I'd guess) who specifically requests for me to take care of her when she comes to the clinic...

This was one of my more favorite patients. That's what really blew my mind.

I think immediately she realized that saying Frankenstein in her head and saying it out loud were two completely different things. I'm sure she didn't mean it to sound as ugly as it did, and she did try to back-paddle, but sometimes it's just better if you stop talking altogether.

shrimplate said...

Sheesh. Usually I'm pretty quick with a witty come-back but that one's got me stumped too.

To your health.

Molly Jane said...

Oh my god... A foot in mouth moment, I know them well.