Disclaimer: This segment of the newsletter contains moments of satire that should not be taken seriously.
Good morning, friends! Hope this morning’s newsletter finds you well.
Thank you to all who supported our collective movement this week.
As we move to the ‘medical stuff’, today I’d like to give you a behind-the-curtain glimpse into a day in our cardiology practice.
It comes at the same time every year, Flu Shot Day for our office team.
Last Tuesday, when I arrived at our office, my teammate Megan seemed so happy. She’s always in a good mood, God Bless Her, but today she just seemed downright giddy.
The only clue she gave was immediately after our 8:00 patient.
As I typed into Epic (our EMR) she turned to me, “You know we get our Flu Shots at 9:15 today?” Funny, she’s been reminding me since July. She must be especially worried because of the tripledemic.
After I finished seeing my 8:45 patient, there was a small group waiting at my dictation cubby.
How sweet! This collection included our Practice Manager, Reva, Megan, and two of the larger males in the practice, both Echo Techs. They smiled and Reva took my shirt by the left arm sleeve as I grabbed for the biggest apple (Honeycrisp!) I could find. She maintained her gentle grip as she led me 100 feet down the wide corridor to our conference room. Over the years Reva learned not to let go and Ben and Nick were trailing just in case. I heard more than one ‘Dead Man Walking’ as I walked past the crew in our Billing Office.
Entering the large conference room, I found it to be packed with fellow employees and two RNs. Everyone was smiling, rolling up or down their shirtsleeves, and engaged in pleasant conversations.
The younger nurse I had never met greeted me as I scanned the crowd.
Good! None of my partners are here.
The nurse asked if I wanted to sit down for a minute.
My look to Reva must have been puzzled and she pointed at her white shoes; my color must have been a little pale.
The other RN, one that I had experience with, was in the corner pretending to ignore me. She was looking off, muttering something under her breath, and shaking her head.
I told the new male nurse ‘Thank You’, I did not need to sit down, I was ready.
He looks at me. I look at him.
“WE ARE NOT DOING GLUTES!!!”
I shifted my attention to my left wrist and gave Reva the signal that it was okay to let go. She backed away, nodding at Ben and Nick, her secret code putting them on high alert.
Megan also suddenly appeared, with a pillow. Last year I granted her request to bring one for future immunizations.
Probably noticing the littlest bit of sweat across my upper lip (forehead, neck, arms, face, and chest) the occupational health nurse asked if I was ready.
I covertly slid a crisp $20 into her pocket and whispered in her closest ear, “How ’bout if we just pretend?”
Like a magic trick that twenty flew back into my white coat, I grabbed for the monster Honeycrisp and bit down hard!
With that cry, the apple dropped to the floor and Megan quickly swept around from behind me. With a huge smile, she slammed that pillow against my face, so my screams would be muffled**.
My breath was growing hotter through the thick-down pillow.
Now was the time for me to be strong.
I had to set a good example for my colleagues in the hall that had not yet received their vaccine.
I gathered myself and reached for the pillow.
It wouldn’t move.
I could not move this…stupid…pillow.
Why is this pillow SO…Hard. to…move!
I was starting to get very tired. Very, very sleepy and very quickly….
I could hear Reva way off in the distance…
“MEGAN!!! MEGAN!!! MEGAN ENOUGH!!!”
Both Ben and Nick had to pry Megan, physically much stronger than I had ever given her credit for, off of me.
With all the excitement, Megan, the poor thing had forgotten to take the pillow off my face.
Fast forward to 6:30 pm that Tuesday evening.
As I make my way out to my Datsun, I wonder if it’s worth going through this flu shot every year.
Well, of course it is.
Driving off I see Reva high-fiving Megan in my rear-view mirror and I’m reminded of exactly why. The key is that I’m not only protecting myself, but more importantly, I’m protecting all the important people around me whom I care so much about.
**In the last 5 years of Flu Shot Days, our practice has received multiple noise complaints from practices on other floors of our MOB as well as the bank across the parking lot.
Disclaimer: This portion of the newsletter is a work of satire. Other than the Honeycrisp, noone was injured, threatened, or put in the face of danger by the events recorded here. In reality, I barely felt the flu shot and it reduces our chances of hospital admission by 50%! I strongly recommend it.