There’s many types of stress associated with working on the medical floor. Of course, I’ve faced practically all of them. From the heart pounding anxieties of not being able to resuscitate a patient in time, to the more mundane worries of showing up late to work or getting overworked, for that matter. Rarely, I am faced with the stress of having a patient who doesn’t understand basic hospital practices. Maybe it’s just my anxiety, but nothing grinds my gears more than those who behave like they’ve never visited a doctor period.
The occasions, although rare, make for great laughs in retrospect. One of the such instances came when I was performing a basic check up on a male patient of mine. He seemed healthy, but again, it’s better to be safe than sorry. After checking his blood pressure, ocular sensitivity, respiratory performance, ear canal (which, by the way, was more waxy than a candle from Bed, Bath & Beyond, I guess you can say it was BEYOND waxy), and all that other good stuff, all that remained was a urine sample. Handing my patient the specimen collector cup, I instructed him to go in the bathroom and pee. He agreed, taking the cup with him, and in a matter of few seconds returned, handing me back an empty container.
“Thanks.” He said, casually. “But there was a toilet in there already.”Like