My Fall Risk


If you are a married person, or a person who is in a long-term relationship, or a person who loves someone very much…


cute couple


Or even just a person who loves a good laugh at the expense of another human being…

Liar Liar Jim Carrey laughing at annoyed woman

I cannot recommend enough the experience of being The Driver for someone who is having an outpatient procedure requiring general anesthesia.


I know, I know… you need me to back up.



Remember that thing where Husband was swallowing his own bloods?  Well, we finally* got his follow-up here in St Louis done and the follow-up endoscopy.


You don’t care about the endoscopy, so I won’t bore you with it.  He’s fine.  I mean, he’s got terrible acid reflux (which he refuses to treat and ignores my advice about) and his allergies are causing some issues (again, the whole not listening to me thing) but he’s basically fine.

surrounded by fire "this is fine" cartoon


No, you want to know about the bit where they asked me to wake him up because they couldn’t manage it.**


ME:  (peering into his faceHEY HONEY!
HIM:  (flutters eyelids)
NURSE:  See?  We haven’t been able to—
ME:  (gets nose to nose) (bellowingYOU GOTTA WAKE UP, BABY!
HIM:  (opens eyes)
ME:  (beams)
HIM:  So… (clears throat)  Am I done?  I’m in Recovery?
ME:  Nooooo… we’re just getting started.  They’re gonna let me put the tube in!
HIM:  (wide-eyed)  Oh, you’ll love that!
ME:  Right?
HIM:  (laughs)
NURSE:  Would you like some juice?  We have apple, cranberry, orange…
HIM:  (to me)  Can I have acids again?
ME:  (nods)
HIM:  (drunkenly)  Then I want orange juice, bitches!  I’ve been dreaming about…
ME:  (raises eyebrow at nurse)
NURSE:  (to Him)  Okay… We just need you to roll over on your back while I unhook—
HIM:  Oooh!  I can roll over!
ME:  … Yuh.
HIM:  It’s like… I’m in sooooo much less pain than I usually am!
ME:  (exchanges look with Nurse)  Welll…  I’m not sure you’re actually in less pain.  They didn’t really give you anything… I mean, that’s probably not what’s going on.  But you for sure care about it a lot less.
HIM:  (nods somberly)
NURSE:  So if you could just roll over…
HIM:  But what if I don’t want to roll over?
ME:  (eyeroll)
HIM:  What if I’m comfortable right where I am?
NURSE:  (slack stare at me)  Well… we need you on your back so you can sit up a bit and drink your juice.
ME:  Remember?
NURSE:  Yes, we have apple, cranberry, orange—
ME:  Oh, God…
NURSE:  (bustles off to get orange juice)
ME:  (smacks him)  Roll over.
HIM:  (rolls onto back)  I can roll over!
ME:  Yes, I know.
HIM:  I just hurt so much less!
ME:  Yes, I know.  This is why they prescribed Vicodin for when your pain gets bad.  And this (gestures) is why I tell you to fucking take it when your pain gets bad.  But you don’t, because you’re convinced that if you take even one you’ll become addicted and die like Prince.
HIM:  —
ME:  And I keep telling you: Baby, we don’t even have an elevator.
ME:  …
HIM:  (happily sips juice box)
ME:  Yes, I really do.
HIM:  We could have levels.
ME:  (eyeroll)  And I thought I was bad coming out of anesthesia.  (to Nurse)  Is this a thing, do people just default to their most basic self when they’re waking up?
NURSE:  (diplomatically)  It… hits everyone differently.
HIM:  She wakes up mad.
NURSE:  Oh dear…
ME:  (nodding)  I come up and literally my first memory is mid-swing.
NURSE:  (shocked)
ME:  (shrugs)
NURSE:  We see different reactions in different people, of course, but… (considers me) wow, that’s a pretty extreme reaction.  Yeah, I don’t think we’ve had that one around here.  Most people just get…
HIM:  (laughs)  “Ooh, I feel drunk, I need to punch somethin’!”
ME:  That’s how we do in my family!
HIM:  Whiskey… is a hell of a drug (giggles)
NURSE:  So as soon as he’s done with that he can get dressed and you can pull the car around.  I’ll go get the wheelchair!  (escapes)
ME:  (sighs)
HIM:  (points to wristband)  Hey, I’m a fall risk!
ME:  Yes, that’s why they’re getting the—
HIM:  But it’s winter.
ME:  …
HIM:  (laughs)
ME:  (pulls out phone)
HIM:  (still laughing)
ME:  … And then he laughed… for five… goddamned… minutes…
HIM:  (laughs while dressing)



And then—I swear I am not making this up—he laughed for FIVE GODDAMNED MINUTES.

David Tennant laughing

Exactly like this.  Every time.


I wasn’t going to post about it, honestly.  I mean, the poor man was Under The Influence, right?


But then…



ME:  Do you want some orange juice?
HIM:  Nah, I’m fine.
ME:  … Do you even remember how excited you were to get orange juice when you woke up?
HIM:  … Yes?
ME:  Do you remember what you said?
ME:  Do you remember when I woke you up and (relays most of the above)
HIM:  I don’t think that happened.
ME:  Really.
HIM:  (glances at wristband) (chuckles)
ME:  (glares)

yellow hospital wristband reads: "FALL RISK'




* Why does it take so long to get in with a specialist as a new patient?  New patients have the most urgent need of their services!  Existing patients’ care is already being managed, and they can afford, in most cases, to wait an extra week or three while their doctor sees some new people, diagnoses shit, whatever.  Specialists, start offering virtual appointments to your existing patients—they’re wasting valuable time in your schedule with “yeah, I feel about the same but should we talk about medication refills?” appointments.


** Yes, really.  The nurse came out to get me just like for every other family member, but when they brought me to his curtain it was all, “so we haven’t been able to wake him up yet… we were hoping you could give us a hand?”  “Say no more,” said I, already rolling up my sleeves to give that man a good shove.




12 comments on “My Fall Risk

  1. Victor K says:

    Hey! And I thought I was the only “angry drunk” after general anaesthetia. Nurses in the hospital were pretty surprised by it, at least.

    Not that it happens a lot, but the two out of three that I can remember at all I was spoiling for a fight.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. jen7iris says:

    My mom just had outpatient surgery the week before Christmas and they gave her a Fall Risk bracelet. She actually went in and got all prepped on the scheduled day of her surgery and got that bracelet and then they didn’t do the surgery due to a ridiculously inefficient issue (DO NOT GET ME STARTED ON THE STATE OF THE FOR PROFIT MEDICAL SYSTEM IN THEIR SMALL NC TOWN)…phew…anyway, so she had one bracelet and then the next day when she went back she got another one. We made so many fall risk jokes. She kept them so she could wear them or make others wear them when it’s funny to do so. We kept saying she couldn’t walk anywhere unless she had her fall risk bracelet.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sherry Bucalo says:

    Ok first, new patients take longer to see and that’s the reason for the long wait to get in. If you happen to go to the ER, tell the specialist office that they said you needed to be seen within a week. Works every time (course you could lie about the ER) Your welcome LOL. Years ago I worked for an oral surgeon and we had this little tiny guy (usually the bigger they are the worse the do with any meds) now we didn’t do general anesthesia but still the meds they gave make the patient think they are out and (thank God, makes them have amnesia) So anyway this 5’6″ maybe 130 lbs comes in to get a tooth out and as soon as the meds hit him he comes up swinging, docs told us girls to leave, but heck I have 3 older brothers so I baited him timed his swing ducked and his fist went through the wall and his head bounced off the wall. He was out cold. I told the doc to go ahead and pull the tooth, but they were laughing too hard so… Called his ride back and asked if she would like us to call an ambulance or did she want to try to get him in the car. Gotta say my stress level was way down for a couple of days after that LOL

    Liked by 1 person

  4. To be fair, if I made that joke stone cold sober I would also laugh for five straight minutes. While doing the wiggles fingers. (which I do instead of fingerguns for some reason and only realise half way through).

    I shiver when I come round from general anesthetic. Like, a lot. More than you’re imagining. I tell the nurse before I go under, and they’re like, “oh that’s pretty normal,” but that’s because they’re not imagining enough shivering. When it starts they get all, “um, are you sure you’re not freezing to death? You kind of seem like you’re freezing to death.”

    Liked by 1 person

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