DP Challenge: A day in the ICU

The Daily Post has thrown a challenge to use active and passive voice in an engaging way. A year ago, I was hospitalised for dengue and here’s an account of one day in the ICU.

I was wheeled into the MICU, a huge spacious room with large glass windows and transferred onto the bed right next to the entrance, for which I was glad. Not that I wanted to escape or anything, but just in case! The nurse’s station was right in front of me and through the window across the room , I could see a Gulmohar (mayflower) tree , in full bloom, with flaming orange flowers, the only bright spot in the otherwise gloomy surrounding .  It was quite unnerving to see the other patients (about 10 in all), with a host of tubes, bandages and ventilators!

Just as I was settling in, an X- ray machine was wheeled in and I was informed that a  lung X-ray had to be taken. The handler loudly announced “Radiation” and all the nurses ran over to the other end of the MICU!

No other patient was awake. The only sounds were of the monitors beeping away. Time was moving like a snail with crutches! I had to undergo platelet transfusion due to the extremely low platelet counts and soon, the transfusion was set up. It was late evening by the time it was done and I got to meet my husband briefly. He came covered from head to toe, in hospital garb. I could only see his eyes, looking strained, but trying to smile and make light of the situation.

The next morning, I was woken up at 5.30 am by the nurse to have my temperature checked and my blood drawn for testing. Then , a lady attender came to ask me if I would have a wipe-down bath in bed or if I would walk to the bath. I opted for the latter. I was escorted to the bathroom at the far end of the MICU and handed a toothbrush, toothpaste and a bar of ‘Dettol’ soap with instructions to wash my hair. I stared at the bar of soap balefully, wondering if my lovely hair would protest, but  since it was uncertain when I would lay my eyes on shampoo next,  I went ahead with it!

A change in the nurse’s shift brought a boisterous bunch of nurses, unlike the soft-spoken ones from the previous day. One of the nurses sitting at the station was learning Sanskrit alphabets from another nurse, while a third was describing her facials and how she likes to lick the face pack applied at the end!

Soon after, the head of the ICU, Dr. Shiv Kumar, a middle-aged, portly , gregarious man, walked in with his entourage of interns and PGs.  After the rounds, they got together at the nurse’s station and started discussing the first International F1 race taking place in India later today. One of the interns had apparently bought a ticket to the F1 for Rs. 30,000/- and Dr. Shiv Kumar found it incredulous that someone could spend so much money to watch a sport. He questioned a young lady intern if she would spend that kind of money and when she answered in the affirmative, he seemed even more amazed. Then he asked 2 other interns, and he was only satisfied when they both replied that they were not crazy about F1 to spend a horde of money on it!

An entertaining morning to say the least!


5 thoughts on “DP Challenge: A day in the ICU

  1. i think your use of passive voice in this post effectively distanced you from everything going on around you. not sure if that’s what you intended, but it’s a spot on depiction of how i feel in hospitals: detached, out of place, just another patient while the professionals do their thing… :0)

    1. I think that’s the only way to keep our sanity there- be detached! What I intended was for it to be a commentary with me as an observor, on these professionals, who also are ‘detached’ as they go about their jobs.
      Thanks for stopping by and appreciate your comments!

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