Count The Contradictions

Today, a patient coded on the 6th floor and I had to run up the stairs from the 1st floor. The distance between hospital floors = the distance between 1.5 floors in other buildings. Approximately. Maybe it’s closer to 2, I don’t know. So that’s like 9 regular floors. Or possibly even 12 regular floors. Something like that. This is not an exact science. My main point is that it was a lot of steps.

1) I’m still in damn good shape. Suck it, body. Try and stop me, potentially life altering autoimmune disease (or whatever you are).

A note on that… The neurologist thinks I have myasthenia gravis. I find out if I have the antibodies on the 18th. You can have the disease (I hate calling it that, but it is what it is) without the antibodies showing up in your labs. You can also have the disease and take Mestinon (a treatment) without showing symptom improvement. I took it. It didn’t help. So, even if my blood work comes back negative and even though the meds didn’t help, I still could have it. Apparently, this is not an exact science either… At least MS was basically ruled out, for now. There would have been more than one spot on my MRI if MS was suspect. Also, my symptoms are more intermittent throughout the day instead of constant and that’s another thing that rules it out for the most part.

I honestly don’t think I could live with MS. The people who have it are the bravest and toughest people I know. DONATE to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society so that maybe someday there will be a cure.

Anyway, if it’s not MG and it’s not MS, then I guess I need a miracle diagnosis and treatment. Or just always be chronically tired and not be able to see for the rest of my life. Whatever. I’m already adapting and it’s not terrible. As I said, I RAN UP A LOT OF STAIRS TODAY and it wasn’t that bad.

Drew told me to write about this and publicize it and face it because he thinks I’m in denial. I’m might be in denial. Or I just take bad news very calmly. It’s hard to tell, I guess. I’m not gonna lie and say that it was easy to write all of that. It’s like when you can’t say awful things out loud because they’re too awful to verbalize. I have to force the words out when I tell someone because I hate making it so real. That part hasn’t gotten easier.

Which is stupid because I might not actually have this. I could have something super fixable. It might not be a life altering autoimmune disorder. So if it’s this hard to tell people that I might have this, then who knows how hard it will be to face the fact that I do have this (if it comes to that). I think I am in denial. Or just refusal to accept my fate until it’s 100% confirmed. But that just seems rational, if you ask me. Why freak out needlessly?

2) Running up the stairs was the moment I knew I picked the right career. I think I’ve probably had like 10 of those “defining” moments. But this one was actually the defining one. Although, that’s what I said about the last one. Defining moments are overhyped. That’s why I have had multiple ones. It’s like how there are people who live for the illusion of romance and can’t be alone and keep looking for “the one.” I live for the illusion of life-changing defining moments. In real life, it’s just living. But in my hypothetical fantasy world of the future, there are moments at which I will know I’m right or wrong or I should go or stay, etc. It’s the hype, man. CLARITY DOES NOT WORK LIKE THAT. But storytime imaginationland makes us think that it does.

Anyway, at what other job do you get to run? Any kind of professional athletics don’t count. That’s not a real job that normal people do. Only the most unreal bionic ones. Even if you’re like the minorest of the minor leagues, it’s still pretty awesome. And normal people don’t do it. I’ve known many teachers and lawyers and accountants and mechanics and secretaries. But never a professional athlete.

To some, maybe running up stairs at your job sounds unappealing. But to me, IT’S BASICALLY MY DREAM COME TRUE. Hells yeah it sucks. It sucks a lot. But when you get to the top (or your floor) and your legs are burning and you’re breathing hard, you get to say to yourself “I’m a motherfucking badass and pushed myself and conquered my body and won.”

You get addicted to this stuff, I swear. Both running and nursing. Well, working in the emergency department specifically.

This is not the first time I’ve had to run on stairs since starting clinical rotations. During my NICU week, we had to run downstairs to the OR to get a c-section delivered premature baby. Lots of crises. Lots of running.

These are the situations in which I thrive and actually enjoy life. Which is why having myasthenia gravis might ruin my life. Without nearly limitless energy, I am nothing. And it’s already been taken away temporarily. If this is permanent, I might actually die from sadness. Especially because 200 hours in the ED pretending to be a real nurse was the best thing of all time. I finally found my thing. And I don’t think I can readjust to doing anything else again.


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