a child never comes into the hospital alone – he is accompanied by an anxious guardian who always lugs along more baggage than a twice-divorced man who is sleeping with his neighbour’s husband. there are social issues, financial difficulties, poor understanding of the child’s illness, misconceptions, behaviour to encourage, habits to break…the list goes on.
just yesterday i had to stop myself from giving a child’s parents my “what the hell were you thinking?!??!!?!11” look for administering his asthma medication in the wrongest possible way (prophylaxis 4hrly during exacerbations, relievers only when the prophylaxis doesn’t work wtf). i had to remind myself that a complaint from a parent is equal to an additional 3 months in paediatric hell, swallow my frustration, and tell the parents in a sickeningly sweet, hypocritically polite manner that they were screwing up their kid’s airway by being disgustingly ignorant.
and then there are the indigenous people who come with children suffering from severe consequences of malnutrition. after the radiographs and antibiotics comes the painfully slow process of helping the kid gain 2 or 3 kilograms without overfeeding him to death. then the social welfare for financial aid, the corrupt governmental body that “looks after” aborigines, the crossing of fingers that they will come for their appointments, that they will keep feeding the child, that the kid won’t die the moment he goes home.
it’s alot of stress and alot of work and there are alot of things that are out of my control…and i absolutely hate it. i am usually a meticulous person but my brain can’t handle being meticulous about every single child i see in the space of that hour and a half before my bosses appear. the horror of realising that i’ve missed something out when the most malignant specialist makes her rounds, the dismay, the disappointment…
…the occult dissent i have towards parents who can’t take care of their kids properly.
i wish i could say i find enough satisfaction in providing the right education to the children’s caregivers but i don’t. the constant mental stress of putting the decimal points where they belong, making sure the right medical officers see me at work at the right time even if i have a valid reason for being somewhere else…those are extra sources of irritation i can do without, but will have to live with for the next couple of months.
irresponsible parents, big brother-esque bosses…i’m so starting off on the wrong foot in this rotation. sigh.