Since I was little I’ve had an innate tendency to accidentally get myself into trouble. My troublemaking has been with me since early childhood, and I’d be lying if I told you that I don’t sometimes feel overcome by circumstances…but I’m learning!
As stated in my file, my studies are related to healthcare, specifically hospital work. I have spent months practicing, so as to cover more than 800 hours as assigned to us on this course. For trainee nurses you already know that it falls to us to do everything…to get patients moving so that they don’t get bed sores, to make the beds, to change the drips…and to wash those who can’t get up themselves to go to the bathroom. And this is where my legendary troublemaking has come into play. Again.
A month ago a handsome rocker was admitted who had been involved in a motorcycle accident and was very badly injured. He’s been in a coma for the last few days, though miraculously he recently woke up and seems to be without any major injuries; just a couple of fractures and a few bruises. When I arrived at work today, my colleagues from the previous shift brought me up to date on the status of all of the patients. When they came to the part about our new friend they began to laugh, “watch out for the tattooed hunk. It seems he’s been asleep for too long and now he’s got topped up batteries ready to go”. I said, “okay” without much interest, assuming that they were saying that this guy was a whiner or a real chatterbox, and I was used to that.
I got changed and, just like every day, I began my round by giving a morning wash to those unable to move. He was the last one. I entered and drew the curtain between the beds to protect his privacy from his roommate. His eyes were closed, so I said “good morning” to wake him up, but he showed no sign of stirring. I repeated my greeting a little louder, but again the rocker failed to respond. Puzzled, I took his hand and gave it a little squeeze as I said “good morning” for a third time… he didn’t bat an eyelid. I started to worry, thinking that something was wrong with him, and suddenly I din’t know what to do. I’m a rookie and had never been in a similar situation. Concerned and thinking the worst, I turned to ring the emergency bell, and at that moment I felt a hand give me a very intentional slap on the arse. I jumped and turned to look at him, and there he was, looking at me with a cheeky expression and a smirk on his face. And… it was such a shock that my first reaction was to give him a hard hit on the arm, as if he were my little brother and I’d caught him playing a trick on me. It was instinctive and I didn’t for a moment consider that this man was in bed immobilized by an accident that had left half his body broken and the other half in pain. He doubled over in a wince of pain and a second later I was already regretting my actions, realising that my practice hours in this hospital had gone out the window… I had assaulted a patient (even if it was an accident) and that was inexcusable.
“I’m sorry! I’m sorry! Dammit! Please, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to”, I said to him as he bit down on his pillow and let out a not-so-reassuring, “ooooo”. “Oh my God, I’ve caused you so much pain! I’m sorry, what can I do? Shall I call the doctor?” Terrified, I expected that he would hit me with a tempestuous rant, but instead he slowly turned towards me and the expression on his face was one of triumph: a splendid smile lit up that beautiful, cheeky face (the scoundrel was playing a joke on me!). “You can give me your number and I won’t say anything”, he said to me as he laughed out loud at my foolish face.
So I gave it to him. Specifically that of our dean, who will gladly inform him of my services and rates :-)… give and take, cowboy.