Saturday, January 26, 2008

The heart annual.

It was a tough day.

We left the house at 6:30 in the morning. It was still dark outside. The moon lingered in the sky.

"But what are we going?" Jordan asked. What, indeed.

We checked him into the lab at 7:00 a.m. We were discharged at 4:00 p.m. We got home at 4:30.

From the wait, to the unexpected bleeding, to the tears ... this was one of the worst biopsies Jordan has had. There's been turnover at the hospital cardiology department, and I think it shows. We've never had an experience like this before. I'm feeling pretty frazzled still. So many things about the day just angered me. There's something wrong about feeling angry about medical procedures. It shouldn't be this way, particularly at a hospital designed for the exclusive care of children. There should be a higher level of sensitivity when little kids are involved.

I don't know what made me angrier. The fact that Jordan bled out so badly, or the fact that a resident with poor bedside manner was sent over to discuss the situation with me. When I confronted her with a simple question - "Does Dr. H (the supervising doctor who performed the biopsy) know Jordan bled like this?" And she couldn't give me a straight answer, I lost it. Badly. I know this is a teaching hospital. I know residency is a learning process. I know how hard it is to try and look competent when you're young, and just starting out. I've been there. I still remember my first jobs out of law school, and trying to look clients in the eye and explain things, and not come across like some smart alecky twenty-something. It's hard. It's hard maintaining credibility when you don't always know the answers. But the only thing to do in those situations is to own up to it.

And this is my son you're talking about. If you stand there and try to avoid my questions, and dismiss my concerns with an air of "been there done that," I am going to rip you apart. Which, I am afraid, is exactly what happened. I'm not known for my politeness in the best of situations. In the worst of them, it's best to just step away from me. Monkey Sr. usually runs interference at times like this. Unfortunately he had to tend to Miss Mina.

The important thing is that early indications show that J's heart function is good. He's home, the bleeding seems to be under control, and he ate a little bit for dinner. I'm pleased to report that he also crashed at 7:00, for the earliest bedtime in history.

I'm confident tomorrow will be a better day. It's just got to be.
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