Monday, February 28, 2011

TFTLM: Got Them Soul Coughing Video Game Addict Blues (Part 3)

It took several more weeks, but with diligent work and treatment the wife eventually did get over her pneumonia. The first couple of weeks back at work, she had to stop and take breathing treatments throughout the day, but her strength was returning. Meanwhile, she was enjoying Elder Scrolls for the PC.

And as for my cold, I got over it, too. At least, mostly. The odd thing about that, though, is that while my major snot-based cold symptoms diminished, the hacking cough never quite went away. It wasn't a constant irritant, but at least once a day I would be hit by the same violent tickle in the back of my throat and would then be sent into a fit of dry hacking coughs that had little to no effect on alleviating the tickle. The only successful ways I found to combat the tickle were gargling with salt water (which only worked half the time), using a Neti pot (or "Drowny pot" as I call it) to irrigate my sinus passages, or sucking on a lozenge. Usually these coughing attacks would happen in the middle of the night. Meanwhile, the coughing was so violent that I began to feel like a Little Big Planet sack person whose stitches were coming loose--just to bring things back to video games.

Toward the end of December, I began asking Dr. Wife what was up with this. The trouble with having a doctor for a wife, though, is that by the time she comes home she's fed up with having to deal with sick people and doesn't want to hear it. Her typical response to any medical questions from me becomes something akin to "I don't know. What are you asking me for?" After the cough continued for another week and a half, though, she suddenly realized the answer.

"Ohhhh! You have an ace cough."

"Do whuuut?" I said.

Let me back up.

One of the major things that's happened to our family in recent months has been a change in position for my wife. After a smidge over two years working for the hospital-based family clinic that brought us to Borderland in the first place, my wife resigned her job there in order to take a position with a local urgent care clinic. It was a decision made with a good deal of consideration, because it meant leaving the patients she had come to know for the past two years. But the hospital clinic job had been stressful and life-consuming to a ridiculous degree from near the beginning and it was taking a real toll on her. When she first interviewed for the position, she had made it clear to her future employers that she was not willing to devote all waking hours to the job, spending all her time on call at the hospital and never getting to spend time at home. She told them that if that was the reality of the job, they needed to part ways then and there. She'd been assured by them, though, that this wasn't the case, her call time would be minimal and she'd have plenty of time off. However, these assurances proved to be wild underestimations. She had two nights of call per week, which meant having to round on patients she admitted during those nights until they were discharged. So two nights on call technically, but days of after hours rounding beyond that in most cases. Then she was asked to take on call duties with a local psych hospital for one night a week, which led to similar after hours time when the docs there were only too happy to turf their patients to her. The draw of a new job with fewer responsibilities, only 14 shifts per month, and better pay to boot was incredibly attractive.
And, having been on the job for nearly six months, she can attest that the new place is pretty much as amazing in reality as it was on paper. She still has a few late nights when they get busy and she has to go over charts afterward, but she's very happy and a lot less stressed out. In fact, when former coworkers and patients ask if she misses the old job, her answer is always "No-hohohoho!"

But I said all that to say this...


1 comment:

crsunlimited said...

Oh come on. Don't give us the windup only to interrupt the pitch by a commercial.