Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Blues Traveler - 100 Years


The best Blues Traveler song ever. Chris Cornell died, and that sucks, but I can't help thinking about John Popper. 

Monday, May 22, 2017

Ovary Frozen

"Ugh. An ovary frozen? On top of breast cases and interstitial lung disease and a full caseload on a Saturday? When does it end? Can you please look up the history?"

"I've got it pulled up right here."

"It's so confusing. She was diagnosed with cancer almost 15 years ago. So did she already get a hysterectomy? Why do we have the ovary?"

"Capsule looks intact. But it's huge. Gotta be cancer."

"The sections you took are necrotic. Let's take it over to the grossing station and breadloaf it - there must be viable tumor somewhere."

"Well, he (gyn/onc surgeon) would know if there is still a uterus."

"I'll ask him." Dial batphone. "Is there a history of endometrial cancer?"

OR help answers. "I'll ask him. No, there is no history of endometriosis."

"???!!!"

"Evans, she just told me there was no history of endometriosis. That's not what I asked her to ask him. I'm frustrated."

"Hello? Is there someone who knows medicine in there?"

"Right, calling all medicine help. Hello? Screw it. Just take this section and freeze it, it looks viable."

"OR. I've got malignant tumor. Not sure what kind. Do you still have the uterus? We will need to do stains."

"He's taking the uterus next."

"That's a big help. Thanks."


Sunday, May 21, 2017

Living the Spicy Life

So my kids are making all kinds of new friends so quickly it's making my head spin. Cecelia hangs with mostly public school kids now (she's dying to go all of a sudden, maybe 10th grade I tell her - convince your father - I've already put down a deposit for next year), and I've met a couple of new moms and girls in the last month. Jack has an online friend from his video games that he apparently knows from 2nd grade maybe? He's been begging to get together with him for weeks. They reunited at a friend's house Friday night for a sleepover. Today he desperately wanted an afternoon playdate and despite my exhaustion from work I knew I'd be missing the hell out of him all next weekend so I acquiesced.

Jack finally found Russ online at 1:30 p.m. to set it up, and interrupted my walk texting me the number to call his mom. She didn't answer. Back at the house, Jack said no she's in bed sick. Call his uncle. Uncle answered the phone, "You have 30 seconds I'm on a bike ride." I said, "I want to pick up your nephew and take him for a treat with my son, his online friend, but I don't know where he lives" all the while thinking how bizarre this was. He gave me more than 30 seconds and found Stepdad's number.

Stepdad answered, "Yes, his Uncle told me you would be calling. I'll bet he would love that. Is this the Jack on Woodlawn?"

"No, we are in Foxcroft, they are online friends. I haven't met y'all yet, but I spoke with your wife on the phone to get her e-mail for Jack's birthday party. I'm just going to take them to get some ice cream and back to my house to play. I'll be there at three and I'll drop him back by six or so. Jack told me your address, thank goodness you are only 5 minutes away. Does that work?"

"Sounds great. I'm the contact now. Not mom or uncle. So funny how these boys get these ideas and everything gets messed up. I was right upstairs."

"Yes I've contacted three of Russ' family members to set this up. I hope they have fun."

I drove to the house with Jack and Russ ran out of the garage. I got out of the car and shook his hand, introducing myself. "So do I need to meet an adult? Or are they ok for us to go?"

"Oh, we can just go. I haven't had lunch, can we do that before treat?"

"Do you like Subway? My stomach is growling I need something too before yoga. Then we can go to Baskin Robbins." I brought my book so I could give them privacy and found a great table outdoors between the two restaurants.

"I love Subway!"

Jack had eaten lunch, so I told Russ to order what he wanted. After he ordered a foot long sandwich, politely asking if it was ok, I ordered a cup of jalapenos to go with the Sun Chips I picked out. He turned to me, looked up, and said with a straight face, "So, you are living the spicy life?"

You could have knocked me over with a feather. My kids friends don't address me quite so candidly, especially new ones. I was excited, and decided to hide my surprise and engage. "Yes, I live the spicy life. Do you live the spicy life?"

"Well, I used to live the spicy life. Then I ate this pepper, it was so hot, it hurt me. I had to give up the spicy life."

"Entirely? You gave it up for good?"

"Yes. I haven't had anything spicy in a while."

"You know, when I was your age, I ate some really spicy hot sauce at a Mexican restaurant at the Epcot Center in Disney and I spent about 30 minutes at a water fountain before I felt like I wasn't going to die. It scared me away from the spicy life. But eventually I got back to it, and I have no regrets. So I would encourage you to keep it open - you might enjoy the spicy life again someday. Now I'm going to go outside it's freezing in here. Enjoy your sandwich and come find me at Baskin Robbins when you are ready for ice cream."

I tucked Jack into bed tonight. I told him I really liked his new friend. "He gave me a new identity. I've irrevocably changed. Up until now, I was just Gizabeth. Now I'm living the spicy life. I can't wait to have him over again. Now I'll sign all my Instagram posts hashtag living the spicy life."

"No mom, please don't."

"Just kidding - I've never hashtagged. I'm above that. Or below it. Or off to the side maybe. Not a hashtagger. So did y'all have fun?"

"Yes, he was really scared when that song he played for you on Spotify had a cuss word in it."

"I noticed him whispering to you frantically in the back seat. I didn't mind."

"Yeah, I told him it was ok. No worries."

"There are worse things in life than cuss words. Just don't cuss at your teachers and you will be ok."

"Yeah mom, I know."

"I know you know. Good night, love you."

"Love you more."

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Gout

Dr. Music barged into my office at 2pm.

"What is all this stuff you have written down. Pseudogout? Tumoral calcinosis? This is just gout."

I'm staring down the scope at the slide I am working up, but turn to look at him.

"Those were just ideas. Because, how can this be gout? It's so damn ugly."

"It's just gout."

"Are you sure? When I polarize it, it looks like crap. Like no gout I've ever seen. Like gout's red-headed stepchild."

"What do you mean?"

"I love gout. It's gorgeous. This is not like any gout I've ever seen."

"But it does polarize. There are crystals."

"Yes, few and far between. I'm a big fan of gout. I always take pictures."

"Show me."

"I'm not sure if I could find it on my phone. I only see it once every year or so. This gout is not picture worthy, if it is indeed gout. I'm not taking a picture of this. Gout usually takes my breath away. Not this one."

"Gout takes your breath away? That's crazy. Gout has never taken my breath away. Marie Osmond, in those weight commercials, she takes my breath away."

"Marie Osmond? And you watch TV that has commercials? Where does that still exist?"

"What, you only watch Netflix? And Marie Osmond has never looked better."

"Well, that and other TV with no commercials. I'll google her. She came to Baptist a few years ago, for Bolo Bash. Did you know that? Radiologist was bragging that she was at his house for a dinner. I didn't realize she was a thing. Wow, yes she's pretty hot, I'll give you that. But she can't hold a candle to a good gout."

"Just sign it out descriptively. Crystalline soft tissue deposits with giant cell reaction, favor gout; clinical correlation recommended."

"Sounds perfect. Thanks a bunch."


This is good gout. I cribbed it from the web. 

Friday, May 19, 2017

Conquer Me




I love this song so much. Watched the video over and over. Bought a striped shirt at Banana Republic in solidarity. Only it didn't bare my midriff. I wasn't that brave.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Fireflies

Pinpoints of bright light
Draw children streaming through dew
Longing for magic

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Nature's Image

Thoughts today while signing out a ridiculous number of complex cases on call.

Feathers = fern leaves = muscular striations

Heart = caverns

Lung = trees and root systems

Pulmonary parenchyma = honeycomb of bees

Cracked dry Earth = pulmonary and liver fibrosis

Arteries = Rivers and tributaries

Thyroid micro = creeks with cobblestones

Brain and electrical synapses = stars, Universe, higher conciousness, a spider's web

Our bodies parallel nature. There is no ego. There is no one. There is only collective.

And when it goes haywire, I'm there to diagnose disease. As a placeholder. I'm not unique - others have done it before me, and others will do it after me. I'm just here for the duration, doing the best I can in my brief moment on Earth.