I have a pregnancy psychosis story for you today...
Aren't you just so thrilled you could puke?
Well, maybe not. But when I was pregnant, that's what I did.
The official diagnosis is hyperemises gravidum. It basically means that you are pregnant, and yes you will puke, but take that typical little morning sickness nuisance and magnify it ten thousand times.
And, no, this is not a dramatic statement from a dramatic person...
I threw up around the clock. I would even wake up in the middle of the night sick. Pitiful. I know.
I continued to work through the entire pregnancy. Hospitalized for a few days to get some fluids pumped in me? No problem! I returned to work two days after being released...After all, I needed to save up my PTO for when the baby actually came!
So. I would puke at work of course. Seriously, I'd be taking care of a patient, get that watery mouth feeling, say excuse me, then clutching my stethoscope sprint down the hall to the bathroom...Unless of course i was unable to make it that far, in which case I would say, "Excuse me," step into the PATIENT'S bathroom and hurl... Don't you wish you could have been my patient in those days?
By the way, I didn't mention that there were 3 other ladies pregnant at the same time on the cardiac floor that I was working, and we all worked day shift. This meant that the odds were at least 2 pregnant ladies were at work on any given day. Also, please note that the fact that I spent a lot of time puking was not a secret. I worked in a hospital with about 200 beds, so everyone knew everyone, and everyone knew that our telemetry and stepdown department had a plethora of pregnant ladies....
Now, to get on with my story.
I drank fountain Dr. Pepper when I was pregnant. As a matter of fact, I had not had caffeine in four years until I was pregnant, but I craved DP, and the fountain version soothed my stomach, so I had at least one a day...
I had been working on my charting at the nurse's station. Picture my lab coat, charts, pencil, stethoscope, drink and a snack size Baby Ruth sitting in front of the computer I was working on. A patient called for assistance, so I went to see what they needed.
As I was returning to the desk, I heard my friend and also pregnant coworker say, "Dr. K, where did you get that Baby Ruth?"
"It was just sitting here."
"I think it was Andrea's..."
Okay, at this point I'm rounding the corner, and the sight that met my eyes sent me into a psychotic break of epic proportions...
Me: Are you EATING my Baby Ruth?
Dr. K, looking slightly confused, and maybe a trifle concerned: I didn't' know it was yours! It was just sitting here...
A brief background on Dr. K. He was in his internship, which means he is in his first year out of medical school... Which also means that he better be dang nice to the nurses because most of us have more real life clinical experience than him, so odds are when things start to go south, they will know more than him about how to act quickly. In addition to this you need to realize that he was famous for stealing our chairs. The second somebody got up to do whatever, he immediately plopped his carcass in their chair...
Remember we had FOUR pregnant women? This did not please us. We were cranky. We were hormonal. Our feet were swollen, and we were still working 12 hour shifts in addition to lifting patients around all day, and moving beds, and cleaning up adult body fluids...We felt we deserved a chair when we got a chance to sit down and do charting.
Return to conversation:
Me: Do you see my stethoscope? Did you notice the lab coat on the back of the chair? My charts? My DOCTOR PEPPER! How could you not think the Baby Ruth might be "somebody's" Baby Ruth? What is wrong with you?! Oh, and by the way, this happens to be the NURSES station, not the doctors station! You are barely out of school and you think you have the right to just come in here and take our chairs every time we stand up! You are the WORST!!!
Dr. K, beginning to look very afraid: I'm sorry, I didn't know it belonged to anyone...
Oh, and Gentle Reader, did you know he also happened to be the proud papa of four kids? You'd think he'd have a better handling of pregnant women than just "I didn't know it belonged to anyone," which was the only defense he could think of...And yes, I really did say all of that, and probably more. I was BRUTAL.
Of course, I felt bad once the initial surge of rage passed. I apologized. I even did it in front of everyone, so he could see I really meant it. I was truly ashamed of my outburst.
Apparently, he was ashamed of his actions too. The next day he brought me a king size Baby Ruth, when he had only eaten a snack size. I felt really small when he did that.
Oh, but you should also know that he went on to his surgical residency in our hospital.
And, sure enough, he turned out to be one of the most arrogant doctors we had.
And, yes. He continued to steal our chairs the minute we stood up.
But, I doubt he ever picked up a random candy bar sitting at the desk without first checking if it belonged to anyone!