Tuesday, December 24, 2013

After Dinner

To share the experience of an arrhythmia, somewhat common amongst the clientele that we serve in our Department, is quite the conversation piece . However, I think it helps Billy-Bob when I commiserate with him, regarding his Atrial Fibrillation.

About half of all persons with A. Fib are unaware of it, often discovering the problem, when they go to a doctor for some other issue. Not only do I have an in-depth grasp of the phenomena, and I teach Cardiac Monitoring, but I am aware that I'm in A. Fib, within 5 seconds. I am thankful that my Cardiologist, tested me with Propafenone about 3 years ago, when I had a prolonged (16 hour) episode. I was given a megadose of the medication, and avoided electrical cardioversion. Since that time, every episode of Paroxysmal A. Fib, has successfully converted with a "rescue" dose of 600mg.

And, on the night before Christmas:

After Dinner

A Fib after dinner
On a family Christmas Eve,
Was not the present that I wished for
'Twas like a snake inside my sleeve.

A Fib after dinner
Fixed it with dessert,
Propafenone 600
And it didn't even hurt.

A Fib after dinner
Not something I condone,
Everybody took a walk
While I stayed home alone.

A Fib after dinner
Three times this year,
All the foods were different
Without wine, or even beer;

In fact, that familiar trigger
Doesn't seem to be the cause,
A Fib after dinner?
I place the blame on Santa Claus.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
Fibbing in Feb

Fibbing in February?
I hope it isn't me,
I have it down to a science
I only do it quarterly,
I'm not due till March
At least that is the plan,
Fibbing in February?
Not once, if I can.

Fibbing in February?
I don't think so, my friend,
I have a birthday
That I must attend,
And it wouldn't be right
To disrupt any parties,
You see, I only invite
All the hale and the hearty's.

Fibbing in February?
That must be you and not me,
Is not in my family tree,
We are stalwart and solid
Dependable and sure,
So, it's no Fib in February
Because we always endure.

_  _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
Let It Be You

February fibbing?
Oh, let it be you,
It's something that I
Would just rather not do,
Four times a year
On the quarterly plan,
Is, quite enough
For this A. Fibbing man.

December and March
June and September,
Is quite enough detail
For me to remember,
I just can't adjust
To more episodes; friend,
A Fib now and then
Is where it must end.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Everybody knows a volunteer (I hope). We hear about them, read about their service, but if you're not paying attention, they go unnoticed. In a hospital, they are indispensable; so much work is done by them and their only compensation is our thanks and perhaps an "Annual Volunteer Dinner". In our crazy department, we have had a few helpful volunteers over the two and a half years that I have been there. Quite often they are Nursing students, both male and female. They often appear shy and uncertain in the beginning, but I think we help them to feel welcome and appreciated, and when they leave, I know that everyone has benefitted from the arrangement. Currently, we have just one volunteer, and although my memory is like Swiss cheese, I think she's been coming almost every Friday night for a year or so. She exists in the land of post-college, and working on what's next. I can best define her value, with a poem:


Michelle, Michelle
Yes, she's the one,
On Friday nights
She gets things done,
As a volunteer
She's beyond compare,
Without her help
We'd still be there.

Michelle brings goodness
Every Friday night,
When we're feeling beaten
She brings her light,
Her energetic
Builds a shining bridge
Across the chasm.

Michelle, Michelle
Has lasted longer,
Than a league of volunteers
Because she's stronger,
She can stock IV trays
And prepare ten gurney's,
She's more valuable than
Edmundo's attorneys.

Michelle will do
Whatever we ask,
She's confident
No matter, what task,
And whatever it is
She does it well,
At the end of each week
We are saved by Michelle.

Michelle has earned
Our gratitude,
A bag of blessings
For her attitude,
Her willingness
To volunteer,
We hope and pray
She returns next year.