My fancy long name is Polysomnographic Technologist. And yes, I do make people call me that, because I took a pretty damn hard test to earn that title. It's supposed to be pretty difficult and has like a 60% pass rate, and I kicked its ass on the first try, so I know what I'm doing. If you ever have the pleasure of having a sleep study done by me, you can rest assured (get it?) that you're in very capable hands. Pinky promise.
Basically my job is to either, observe people sleeping, or set them up on a CPAP machine if they have sleep apnea. It's a pretty neat-o job, that I like and I'm good at, which is a pretty rare find these days. But we're not here to talk about me doing well at something, we're here to talk about when I make an ass out of myself, because that makes for a good story.
Last night, when discussing what exactly would be going down with a parent of a patient, she asked me to hand her something that was to my left. Since I'm a child, I made an 'L' with both hands, and headed in the direction of the hand that looked best. Yeah, Tina, go ahead and slap that 'L' on your forehead and kill yourself.
Is this the only time I've been embarrassed in front of a patient? I'm sorry, have we met? Do you know what it feels like to have somebody compliment your perfume because it smells like food? Twice? I do. Guess what, buddy? I'm not wearing perfume, but I did just eat some spaghetti.
Since I'm frequently discussing different types of health issues, medications, etc. with patients, I will usually confuse the word 'but' and 'butt'.
Patient: "Allergies are horrible. They mess with my ears, throat, nose, but...."
Me: "Your butt?!"
Patient: "....no, BUT not today."
Another patient after a twenty minute conversation with me, smiled, looked at me, and said 'Your boyfriend is a special kind of tolerant, isn't he?" Ummm, if by 'tolerant' you mean 'lucky' then yes, he's a special kind of tolerant.
Pediatric patients are always my favorite, they're sweet, funny, and 95% of the time they listen much better than adults. One particularly adorable kiddo called me old, slow, dumb, and insulted my kicks all in one sentence. Did it make me cry? A little. Will this boy make an excellent high school girl? Absolutely.
And usually at least once a night I trip and fall over EKG wires, or almost strangle myself with EEG wires in front of a patient. Yet, they always trust me. Why? Because I make sure to use big words while all of this is going down.
I'd like to blame it on the weird night schedule, but I once called my mom and asked her what a 'Florida ounce' was and if shampoo bottles in Georgia said 'GA ounce'. Let that sink in.
Moral of the story? I might look stupid the whole time but trust me, I know what I'm doing.