“OK, I’m going to tell you right now, you’re breathing way too fast. Slooow, deep breathes. Inhale real deep, now push it out slowly. Good, good, now keep doing that. Slooow, deep breathes. Slooow, deep breathes… OK, you’re breathing too deeply, not so deep! You’re going to make yourself pass out…”
Sitting in the waiting room with a severly sprained (I hope that’s all) ankle. Swollen, black & blue, having to hop on one foot to get here. The stairs from my apartment prior to this were no picnic, either.
The overweight asthmatic with the breathing quandry, who went through the wide wheelchair door representing salvation, is now out of eye and ear-shot. Some family waits for her behind me, rudely talking on a cell phone in another language, despite the sign clearly prohibiting the device’s use. There’s a kid with a doting mother and a black eye, some coughing and wheezing young professionals, another limper like me, and some miscellaneous patients with non-obvious injuries.
b.p. 134/92, pulse rate 107. To my credit, I had to hop in here, and I’m starting to get a little out of breath. I’m now waiting for x-rays, and listening to a lady with a foot injury get hers. I suspect it’s a recurring problem as she seems upbeat and relaxed, even though she hobbled in with the assist of a cane. From my examining table I get a clear view of la Machina de X-Ray: patients go in through a door on the right, and the x-rays come out from a door on the left. From here, I can clearly see where the doctors and nurses are evaluating the new films. Looks like Asthma Lady is faking, but Madame Foot Injury may have a problem. There are dark lines criss-crossing her ankle, but these mean nothing to an untrained eye like mine.
They give me a lead flap to cover my groin, but nothing else, which makes me laugh. It attaches around my waist and makes me look like an ancient Egyptian with a penchant for flashing. 3 poses and 3 minutes later, I’m back in the examining room waiting for the doctor.
Good news: sprained! I let out a disappointed groan that had the doctor and attending nurse laughing. I explained that I already had my war-story prepared if it had been broken, and the doctor offered to oblige. I decline. After an ace bandage, and air splint, and a wheelchair ride to my car, I’m on my way to the pharmacy for crutches. They shall be useful in garnering the kind of sympathy I so desperately crave…
PS it was from playing basketball