Plenty of little girls dream of being nurses or doctors, but I wasn't one of them. This might surprise some of you, but the human body and it's disgusting functions has always grossed me out. It's true that I've always liked watching those real-life operation and autopsy shows, but that's just television and I'm pretty sure that I'd faint if I had to see any of that mess in real life. I even felt a little skeeved out while hanging out in the morgue at a hospital. . .and all the stiffs were locked up!
Several years ago, my husband had a hernia operation. He had the poor taste to ask me to check his wound and change his dressing. I tentatively peeled back the tape and recoiled like a snake was lurking underneath. I swear that it looked like they installed a zipper and my tummy did flip-flops whenever I had to look at it. He was annoyed with my theatrics and he took over his own nursey duties as soon as he was able.
My husband recently had back surgery. That means that he had an incision on his back. He can't change a dressing on his back. Guess who gets the honor?
My heart started pounding in my ears when I only looked at the skin surrounding the bandage. It was such a deep shade of purple that it almost looked like our son had colored on his back with markers. I readied my supplies, took a deep breath, and went for it. I yanked off the tape, quickly swabbed it down with whatever the heck it was that they sent him home with, and covered it with gauze as soon as I could. I had faced my fear (aversion is probably a better word) and I felt excited that it was almost over.
For some reason, I was holding my breath through all of this and I exhaled in a rush of relief. My breath made that stupid gauze roll off his back and I was forced to see the incision again. The floor felt like it shifted under my feet and I tossed the gauze back on his wound. I yanked off several lengths of tape and pressed it to his back, being gentle while desperately trying not to get my fingers anywhere near what I knew was underneath that gauze pad. I know it makes no sense. . .it's not like something would jump from his incision and pull me in, but it really freaks me the heck out! Finally finished, I wandered out of the room to rest for a few minutes.
So, my friends, don't ever think you can count on me in a medical crisis!