Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Boss, the pain, the pain!

I find tattoos interesting. I don't have any of my own, though I did have the kids convinced, at one point, that I had one on my butt. But nope, no skin art at our house.

I've seen a lot of tattoos over the years, especially when I worked in the hospital. Took care of a girl in preterm labor once, and when I rolled her over to give her a shot, there was the Rolling Stones tongue, staring back at me. Kinda surreal, getting ready to deliver a baby and having that big tongue there, but I've seen weirder things.

Like the girl who was in active labor when I first started attending deliveries. Went back to take care of the baby when it was born. One of our residents was with me. Ilya just happened to be Russian. We were hanging out, getting equipment ready for the big event. Every once in a while, we'd look over to see how things were going, and this patient inevitably would be pushing, causing her huge dragon tattoo to lunge out at the doctor like it was going to eat her head. It was truly the most bizarre thing I'd ever seen in a delivery. Ilya looks at me, and in a thick Russian accent says, "remind me to tell my wife not to get a tattoo on her belly." No problem, big guy.

And then there was the guy I took care of in ICU. He was on the losing end of a motorcyle/car accident, and was in a coma. My friend was in giving him a bath, and suddenly pokes her head out of the curtain. "You HAVE to see this," she says, to the respiratory therapist and me. RT heads in, figuring something's wrong with the patient's ventilator.

Nope, not even close.

Here laid Mr Patient on his bed, hooked up to eleventy thousand tubes, and when Mel pulled down the sheet, there it was: KISS ME, tattooed very nicely, right on the end of his ego. RT (a male) says simply "more of a man than I am," and wanders back out.

I will likely go to my grave wondering how much alcohol was involved when that tattoo was done, but I am always interested in seeing if anyone can oneup that one, but I've never seen one.

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