01 March 2010

hem/onc jesus

so for my last week of pediatrics (last week), i was on inpatient hematology/oncology (for non-medical people, this is the blood diseases/cancer service). it was actually really interesting and fun. our kids were sick, but many were getting better. my attending was fabulous. he was a recent transplant from st. jude in memphis ("the mecca", our fellow liked to call it), and he made a huge production of teaching me every second he had available. he'd pull up powerpoints from "the mecca" and the fellow would roll her eyes (then secretly smile). he'd call to me from across the ward - "are you ready?" - and take me into patient rooms. he would teach these poor sweet overwhelmed families how to calculate absolute neutrophil counts. it might have been a little overboard, but it was awesome. i ate it up.

the hem/onc ward itself was pretty much like any other floor in the hospital. slightly different equipment, etc, but more or less the same. on one particular day, however, i was sitting at the computer in the unit looking at labs and glanced over at my hand holding the mouse to see jesus staring up at me. no, i was no hallucinating. it was jesus.
this is the best approximation of him my google search results could find.

i kept one eye on 4inch plastic jesus while i finished my computer business, then i left the nurse's station. i actually didn't think much about it that day.

the next day i came in, i looked for jesus. in fact, he was lying face down near some phone books. oye! i didn't mess with him, but that seemed sort of weird.

the next day when i came in, jesus was up on the top of the counter of the nurse's station next to a chart, situated in such a way that just his little face was looking out over the patient's chart and his body was obscured.

i found this entire thing very odd. my first thought was: "oh, this is the hem/onc floor -> kids with cancer ->prayers needed -> jesus can watch over them." but then my second thought was: "they sure treat 4in plastic jesus pretty crappy if they're hoping for him to watch over people." and then my third thought was: "this is the only children's hospital in the state, nay, the region and i imagine it's a pretty culturally diverse place, so where's the 4in plastic buddha and muhammad and mother mary, etc." ... and at some point i stopped thinking and just enjoyed the irony of the situation: a 4in plastic jesus was getting tossed around a nursing unit where we miraculously cure children of cancer daily.

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