Friday, 22 May 2015

What A Day!

Wednesday. It got off to a terrible start when my colleague informed us that she had to put her dog to sleep the night before. My manager offered to take over her duties so she could go home to rest as she wasn't able to sleep the entire night. She declined, saying that it would be better for her to be at work so her mind was not constantly on the thoughts of her lost friend. He had lymphoma for almost a year now, initially diagnosed when they discovered a lump on his neck & biopsy showed malignancy. He underwent 1 cycle (4 rounds) of chemotherapy & was alright for a while. 2 months later, the lump came back. He received another cycle of chemotherapy. The 1st & last time I saw him, it was beginning of the month, when we attended an all day course & her husband came to fetch her with their dog. I didn't want to ask her what happened coz I know it's just too painful. But I heard from my manager that the dog's face started to swell & they were advised to put him to sleep. He was only 5. You know how I feel about dogs. They are the absolute best friends we can ever have. Loyal to the end. My mom used to tell me, "没有踏进棺材你都不会知道一个男人老不老实。" (You will only know if a man is truly loyal to you the day you step into your coffin - referring to my dad's infidelity.) I totally agree. You can't say that of a dog. My relationship with Ah Ton outlasted my previous marriage. So I know & I feel so bad for her. I had to walk away coz I know I would start crying which will trigger her to start crying & before we know it, everyone at work will be brawling their eyes out.

We had 8 cases in the morning which took us to 12.40 pm as the last 2 patients were not cooperative. We were supposed to do an add on case during lunch time, bilateral intravitreal injection but as we had finished late, we had to reschedule it to the end of the day. The 6 cases in the afternoon went off without a hitch. Surgeon was late, but then, he always is. But it worked out alright coz we had to go for lunch. Half way through the afternoon list, my colleague from recovery came to get my manager who was scouting for me. A colleague who was not on had called & asked for her. After the bad news in the morning, the 1st thing that came to my mind was, "Oh no. I really hope it's not her dog." This colleague's dog had cancer as well. So when my manager came back, I immediately asked if everything was alright with my colleague. Apparently, she wanted to set an appointment & she just wanted to make sure my manager can give her the day off. Phew... A big sigh of relief.

Shortly after, a request came in to add a case that very day. We already had a bilateral intravitreal injection so this case had to go last. Normally, injections are done out in the clinic but this patient requires heavy sedation so she "won't know what's going on". That done, we went with the last case, removal of lens fragment. But, this patient had severe restless legs syndrome & what normally would have taken 5 mins to do went on for half an hour coz she just couldn't keep still. In eye surgery, slight movements are bad enough, not to mention big ones. Movements make it dangerous when instruments are in the eye. You can easily pierce the posterior capsule (PC) or lacerate the cornea. We had 2 persons holding her legs & 2 persons holding her head. But in the end, we did get the fragment out.

By the end of the day, everyone just felt so drained. It wasn't all that late, just 6.15 pm. But the emotional aspect of it made it felt like a super long day. It was followed by the usual hour drive home, rest up & back to work the next day. 

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