July 28, 2013

10 Reasons the Hospital Sucks (Unless You Like Zombies). ~ Erica Leibrandt

Photo: Pixoto

Being in the hospital sucks. Here’s 10 reasons why:

1.You’re never there for a good reason.

Barring the birth of a child, (which, while miraculous and whatever, can still suck), you’ve probably been in some horrific accident, or you have a mutant disease, or you are old and about to die. Let’s face it, even if you didn’t end up there for something awful, there’s a good chance you’ll contract something awful during your stay. My daughter went in to get her tonsils out, was infected with MRSA, and had to stay two weeks in the ER. It sucked.

2.You don’t sleep.

Just as you manage to drift off for 10 minutes among the incessant beeps of your heart monitor, IV, oxygen thingy and a mélange of other machines, in pops the nurse to poke and prod you, stick things in your fingers, shine lights in your eyes and ask you to pee… which brings me to number 3.

3. You can’t pee.

You sit and sit and sit on a toilet, in which they’ve inserted a large plastic cup to hold your pee so they can see what you’re doing in there, and nothing happens. The door is half open while the attendant waits outside like your mom did when you were three, the water is running to create some semblance of privacy, the meds they gave you have frozen your bladder and addled your brain and you wonder, “If I cry into the pee cup, would that suffice?”

4. You look like shit.

I’ve heard zombies are popular lately. Maybe you can try out for The Walking Dead? Glassy eyes, greasy hair, bloody gauze affixed to your body here and there—even if this was Halloween, your neighbors would still call the cops on you.

5. Everyone wears bad clothes.

Not just you, in your shapeless gray gown with snaps at the shoulders and a wide open back with little straps which get caught in your fully exposed butt crack, but everyone. Doctors and nurses in ill fitting scrubs, worn with clogs or sneakers and sterile shower caps. The florescent lights don’t help either. Everywhere you turn, you see miles of pasty skin. Look! It’s the whole cast of The Walking Dead. And you’ve just signed a piece of paper which allows them to knock you out and cut you open!

6. Your dog isn’t there.

Or your cat, but I’m irrationally assuming you’re a dog person. Your sweet furry friend, who greets you joyfully each morning and curls up with you each night, has been left behind wandering the halls of your home morosely, convinced you are already dead. Meanwhile, you toss and turn in your empty hospital bed strewn with un-squishy pillows and too-thin blankets wondering if anyone has remembered to let your dog out, or if there is going to be a pile of poo waiting for you to clean up when you get home.

7. Other visitors are there.

Oh yes, they come with good intentions. They bring flowers and awkward smiles, but really, what does that accomplish? You’re forced to entertain them as best you can, regaling them with stories of your procedure and prognosis, while they stand around mentioning that you look great (you don’t) and that they remembered to let the dog out (they didn’t).

8. You’re attached to things.

You’re all plugged in like Stevie Ray Vaughn in the “It’s a Cold Shot” video (I know, I’m dating myself here. Google it.). There’s a big old needle in your hand, tubes running out of it, everything connecting to a computer on wheels (the source of the midnight mockery of beeping). You’ve got drainage tubes hanging out of you, plastic circles with snaps stuck on you, and acres of surgical tape sucking the moisture out of your sickly skin.

9. The food is bad.

It seems strange, because you’re there to heal, to be healthy, and yet you are presented with such things as soggy grilled “cheese” (pretty sure that’s not actual cheese in there), macaroni and “cheese,” “cheese” burgers, and “cheesy” eggs. Wash it down with a teensie cup of juice and some bad coffee, follow it up with an oversized cookie, and you have the problem with American health encapsulated in just a few meals. I’ve never been to prison, but I think they use the same caterer.

10. You might die.

Alright, you probably won’t, but as my husband so helpfully said on my last trip to surgery, “Dying on the table is always a possibility.”

Of course, it’s not all bad. As awful as the clothes are, you don’t have to pick out an outfit. As bad as the food is, someone brings it to you…in bed. You don’t have to do laundry, or put the kids to bed, or go to work, or even brush your teeth if you don’t wanna.

And even if you do look bad, I’m fairly certain the other Zombies wont give it a second thought. Just close your eyes and dream of good cheese, soft dogs, and pants that cover your ass.


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Assistant Ed: Ben Neal/Brianna Bemel

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