Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Happy Birthday Dad!

Happy Birthday, Dad! (and incidentally my mom in-law too).
It was a special treat to have been able to celebrate his birthday with him this year. After all, being so far away, the last time I got to do this was in 2001. It's interesting though how you appreciate your parents even more now that you're a father. Even simple things like some fatherly advice on how to hold your baby, or feed her. To the more serious things like college education funds, or life insurance to protect your family. It's in many ways a new dynamic to our relationship.
The most special thing though, and this touches me at a very very deep level, is seeing my parents play the role of grandparents to our little Alli. It becomes all so real, not just on the 2-dimensional computer monitor when videoconferencing. And, what really tugs at my heart is watching them hold her, and play with her, and say the same (Hokkien) phrases that they did when we were growing up.
Maybe it's a weird thing to say, but calling this place home now, it's still important for me to think that my child will hopefully retain some of the Malaysian Chinese roots and culture. For I know there will be some things I went through that she will never experience. Like what it feels to be camping in Taman Negara, and wading in a freshwater stream. Or hearing the familiar toots of the Chinese breadman as he made his night rounds on his motorcycle. Or how to make little spinners with a flattened bottle cap and some string. You know, simple things like that. But, at least, to have her learn even simple phrases, like 'nen-nen' (milk), 'chiak pang' (eat rice), 'ah kong' and 'ah ma'. So, having my parents here, and seeing them just surround her with all these traditions, warms my heart immensely.
Dad leaves for Malaysia after a 3 month stay here (mom will stay a couple more months to help with Alli). It's been a swell few months, and I'm sure we'll all miss him, even Alli. The next time he sees her, she'll probably be 1 and half, and running around.

Friday, September 24, 2010

I saw Mrs. K today for follow up of her prolactinoma.
She was doing well, clinically and probably biochemically (still awaiting test results) from the Bromocriptine I started her on.
And then it hit me. It was exactly 3 months ago, when I last saw her, that Kristin called and told me she was in labor, 2 hours away. It was my first visit with this patient, and she understood why I was ansy and nervous when evaluating her. And she understood why at the end of the visit as she was about to check out, I grabbed my bag and literally ran to the carpark to rush to see Kristin.
How time flies: now my baby is 3 months old!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

I had fun at one of my patient's expense today. I shouldn't have, but I couldn't resist. And we go back enough that I was comfortable doing it.
Mrs. Y came for her 3 month follow up of her diabetes. As pump patients go, she's one of my more reliable patients. She also has Graves' for which I put her on Methimazole not too long ago.
As my nurse took her vital signs, I walked up to her back silently.
And as she got on our digital weighing scale, I quietly put my right foot on the scale.
She almost choked when the scale read 180 lbs for the slender Mrs. Y.
She blurted out,
"I knew Dr. V said I might gain some weight when he put me on the thyroid medication, but I didn't expect SO much!".
It was then that my nurse and I started laughing, that she knew what was going on.
138 lbs after all.
We had a good laugh (Mrs. Y too). One of the perks of the job; some patients you get to know well enough that it gets fun.
Before she left, she promised to get back at me. And knowing her sense of humor, I'm pretty sure her threat of revenge will not go forgotten!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Que Sera Sera

In a moment of creative brilliance ('creative' to be very subjective), Dr. Vagus presents his version of Que Sera Sera:
(yes, I know it doesn't rhyme. There's a reason I didn't do poetry)
When I was a med student,
I asked my intern, what would life be?
Will it be cushy, will it be sweet?
Here's what he said to me:
Que Sera Sera,
It's more fun when you're an MD,
You get your own pager now,
You make some money.
When I was just a resident,
I asked my fellow, what would life be?
Will it be cushy, will it be sweet?
Here's what he said to me:
Que Sera Sera,
You finally know some things,
And it's nice to get more sleep,
No overnight calls.
When I was just a fellow,
I asked my consultant, what would life be?
Will it be cushy, will it be sweet?
Here's what he said to me:
Que Sera Sera,
Life finally gets easier,
You make fellows do your work,
And take your pager calls.
Now that I'm a consultant,
After 12 long years, of training
I realize something, to my chagrin:
Those bastards lied to me!
It does not get easier,
I still get paged every night.
And I bring home loads of work,
Should have dropped out of school.

Feel free to sing along....

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Alli in a Monkey Suit

Yea, I know it's still a month + to Halloween, but we couldn't resist...

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

This was a doozy of a consult.
It was a 'I have an urgent consult, can you please see ASAP?' type deal, coming from a cardiologist friend.
Mr. Y ate at The Machine Shed the other day. He reported having 4 slices of french toast with syrup, 2 beers, 2 shots of Jack and then was called to have his appointment with cardiology for pre-angio work up for ischemia. Why he had alcohol in the morning, before a doctor's visit when he was supposed to be NPO, I don't know.
His glucose after that was found to be 580 mg/dL while his triglycerides 850 mg/dL; naturally his angiogram was cancelled and he was routed my way.
I asked him why. He said he was splurging as he felt he could die from the angiogram anyhow. "I might as well enjoy life...!"

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Alli Starts Daycare!

I dropped Allison off at daycare for the first time today. And I have to say I was unprepared for what I had to go through.
Fatherhood seems to have done some things to me. Dropping her off was gut-wrenching. Bluntly put, I started crying. Seriously. To make it worse, as I was leaving I ran into my nurse practitioner who was dropping off her baby. I just muttered a "see you at clinic" and ran into my car. I'm sure she saw my red and swollen eyes but because I was her boss she didn't say anything.

At least it was just across the hospital and so I was able to see her over lunch.

For those of you who have sent kids off to college, I imagine it was 100x worse!