Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Frankentoe

     I finally took a shower today for the first time in almost a month! It was nice. Bathing, while awkward, was more enjoyable than I thought it would be. And I got to use all the bath salts I have collected over the years intending, then failing, to bathe. I loved the idea of wandering around the house lighting candles and getting caffeine while "drawing a bath." And I'll do it again, every once in a while. My friend Becky, the teacher one, has this fancy wooden contraption that spans her tub rims horizontally that has a drink holder and soap holder and loofah holder and even book holder those are crazy bath goals.

    Nurse Jekyll and Hyde told me not to wear real shoes for a week and bandage tightly to prevent swelling but I've been testing the waters and either she's overly conservative or my toe is a prodigy or she's full of it. It still looks like hell - surgical scars and all. Strangely, my entire foot molted like Spotty Dangerous' skin when I took the bandage off. Skin sloughage in abundance. I wondered, moisture build up from sweating under bandages? Who knows. The baby toe is still quite scaly despite generous lotion and that is more of a correct reason than swelling at this point to keep it bandaged. Today I braved my socks and boots and thank goodness it was OK. It was a day. Worse than Monday.

    I headed to Conway for early frozens for a Fraley case that was supposed to start at 8:30. It started at 9:40ish - his nurse poked her head in to tell us he would bring the specimen soon. Funny, I've met and talked to Kirsch and Marrero multiple times over the years but couldn't have picked Fraley out of a lineup until I saw him on the Conway Q/C? Q/A? I lose track and I'm a new CLIA director but he (not me! my camera is covered with a hot pink post-it) was on video and must be the CMO or something bc he was a big part of it. So I know what he looks like, but I've never talked to him, so when his nurse vouched for his goodness I tried not to get too mad when he sent a fresh parotid specimen for lymphoma work up at 11:00. I was not needed, after all. A PA could handle that. There was no frozen.

    And it was a 185 block day, just like yesterday, and I was texting Shaver and he was helping me with cases bc John brought up NADA on the 10:00 run. But Misty had so many questions and things for me to sign it was moot. I was busy. There is much room for change and reform there and I'm excited to do it. Lots of paperwork and education, for me and the techs.

    I jetted back to LR by 11:30 and skipped lunch (lines too long, accidentally got Italian Wedding soup from dr lounge but gave it away bc it is one of my faves but very gluten heavy I couldn't handle that today). Worked straight through and was caught up by 2:30 it surprised me so much I checked in with Shaver and texted Fraley - we are new today text acquaintances - that I was no longer in the weeds (he called me while I was in the middle of emergently dictating a Hagan's case at noon - that's a story for another time). We were chatting amiably about intraoperative parathyroid hormone turnaround time and how to make it better. 

    But that Marotti case still hadn't hit my desk and I went to all my partners they didn't have it either so I checked in with Jessica and she bird dogged it. She found, at 3:30, ten trays including diagnostic GI's and lungs and livers and transplant heart biopsies and Marotti's case in a Conway box I didn't even know existed. I'm not a yeller, but I called the head of histology and told him what happened and demanded accountability and course correction. The shit was hitting the fan and everyone heard and Shaver and Melody and Staggs jumped in to help, while I was working up cases that I should have had on the first Conway run, some of them rush.

    Let me put this a little bit into perspective. We are so fast with our turnaround that we spoil our clinicians. Most of this, while certainly important, is not life or death. An extra day won't hurt. But we operate a tight ship and when a part fails it's kind of a big deal. Tara assured me she would shore up the new histotech on distribution (she's amazing) and that we are getting a night shift next month, which will be a huge relief for us all. But holy hell what a roller coaster of a day. And it's only Tuesday. Here's hoping tomorrow will be easier. It's my daughter's 18 BDAY!!!!! I've got back up coverage plans we have a blended family dinner at Ocean's at Arthurs and back at my house for cake and presents. So excited. I've spawned an adult. Hope you had a good day. Much love, Elizabeth

    

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