This is substandard nursing care. I want a Coke! My weekend is not going well. It all started when I was admitted to my hospital’s ER. I’m a klutz and I fell down some stairs while doing housework yesterday evening. People who know me know how much I hate cleaning my house—I’m no Martha Stewart—and after my tumble down the stairs, it will be a cold day in hell before I get the urge to sweep up anymore dust bunnies.

Like most nurses, I’m the world’s worst patient. I didn’t want to go to the ER last night even though I was screaming in pain and crying like a baby. No, not me, I’m on the schedule to work the weekend and I’m not going to call in sick. My ankle was swelling, so my darling husband packed my ankle in ice, elevated my foot, gave me Motrin, and I called it a night. At 4 a.m. I woke up in searing pain. I roll out of bed and crawl to my office to use the phone. I called my nursing supervisor.

Me: Hello Nice Supervisor, this is Mother Jones RN. How many patients do we have on the unit?

Nice Supervisor: Well, good morning Mother Jones RN, you’re up early. What’s going on?

Me: I fell down some steps and my ankle is painful and swollen. I think it might be fractured. I’m NOT calling in sick, but if we’re busy, is it alright if I just sit behind the desk with my foot elevated and take off orders and answer the phone.

Nice Supervisor: This sound serious. I’m marking you down as sick for the entire weekend and I want you to be seen in the ER. You may have a compartment fracture, but even if you don’t, we need to be checked out. I hope you feel better. Goodbye.

I was overcome by guilt. “Maybe I’m over reacting, and I should get a second opinion,” I thought. I called the 24 hour health hot line number I found on the back of my insurance card. I spoke to a nurse and told her what was going on. She laughed when I got to the part about feeling guilty. She said that nurses are the worst patients, and that I must listen to my nursing supervisor. She said she was preauthorizing my visit to the ER. I woke up my sweet husband from a sound sleep, and we started our trek to the ER. I’m going to live, I just have a bad sprain.

Too bad the doctors in our ER don’t look like the ones on TV. I would still hate going to the hospital, but at least it would be more fun. I’m still feeling guilty about not going into work today, but every cloud has a silver lining. Now I have more time for blogging.