A weekend bout with the stomach flu, and all the unpleasantries associated with said illness prompted me to give Dr. Matilde, my physician from Uruguay, a jingle early Monday morning. I always fell a little wimpy when I call a doctor for other than routine stuff, so you can be sure I was feeling none too well when I had her answering service page her.
After describing my weekend to her, she said (imagine thick accent here,) “Oooooh. You’re dehydrated. Go to Mt. Sinai.”
Looks like this little girl got herself a sick day.
I have an HMO, which is just a big healthcare clique really, where your doctor only lets you go see people she likes and to places where she hangs out. So Mt. Sinai Hospital—just a prison wall’s jump away from Cook County Jail—probably wouldn’t be my first choice.
But it’s a perfectly fine hospital, and if you have nothing to do for four hours except lay back and suck up a couple of IVs, I promise you won’t be bored.
Example. About five minutes into my “spa treatment” a guy named Frank was wheeled into the curtained area next to me. Frank was involved in a car accident on the West side somewhere. Frank was not happy.
Frank: “I’m going to kill that Mexican mother fucker!”
Cop: “Frank, 14,000 Chicago cops now know you’ve been in an accident with (the Mexican mother fucker.) If anything happens to him, we’re coming for you Frank.”
Frank: “But I just got my car outta the shop.” I thought he was going to start crying.
Cop: “Frank, you’re acting like a baby.”
Doctor: “Frank, do you have any medical problems?”
Frank: “No. . . Yeah, I get migraines. . I was shot in the head in 02.”
As for me, I was pretty much on my own. I got up a few times to hit the ladies room with my IV bag in tow, sporting a lovely Oscars-inspired hospital gown and yoga pants I hastily picked up off my bedroom floor after talking to Matilde. I was smoking hot. I owned that ER.
Once I was all juiced up, a doctor popped his head in between the curtains and nearly gave me a heart attack. “How are we feeling?” He asked, grabbing my wrist to check my pulse. It was night and day. I guess there was something to that whole hydration thing.
“Um much better.”
“Ready to go?”
With that I was sprung. I got dressed, got a high-five from a University of Chicago resident on my way out, and was home watching soaps by 1 p.m.