I apologize that the chapters are a little short, i’m working on it.
I walked into the cafeteria during my lunch break and as I headed over to the counter my eyes roamed around for the girl from yesterday but she wasn’t there and for some reason I felt a little disappointed which was weird as well as disturbing.
I don’t know what it is about her but when our eyes locked I felt the overwhelming need to defend and protect her from the harsh realities of the world. Her warm brown eyes which were glazed with unshed tears pulled on my heartstrings and that feeling was foreign to me.
When I glanced back at her retreating form, she looked drained and not just from the previous incident but from life itself. I wanted so badly to be the one to comfort her and bring her peace that she needed.
“Hello, what can I get for you?” one of the ladies at the counter asked, batting her fake eyelashes a little too much at me.
“Hi, can I get two muffins and a bottle of coke please” I replied politely.
“I’m sorry; we do not have muffins today. Is there anything you would like” she asked with a smile.
“Oh” I didn’t really think of any other thing.
Ever since those muffins were introduced into the hospital cafeteria menu, I never bothered to order anything else. It was best thing on the menu and just didn’t know why I liked it that much.
“Uhm, do you have the chicken burger?” I asked hopefully.
“yes, we do” she said. “How many do you want?”
“Just one, please”
“Along with the coke?” she asked and I nodded
She moved away from the counter to get my order ready and I drummed my fingers on the counter as I waited for my lunch. In less than two minutes, the lady returned with my order in a tray and I handed her my ATM card. Her fingers lingered a little longer than necessary as she collected the card from me and returned it back after swiping it into the system.
I walked over to an empty table and placed my tray on it before sitting down, my eyes wandered back to the counter and I wondered how I never noticed her before yesterday. Although, I’ve been told that I could be overly focused on my small circle and never bothering to expand it by getting to know people.
I returned my attention to my chicken burger and coke; this wasn’t what I planned to have today but it will have to do till I got home. I sanitized my hand with the mini hand sanitizer I carried around before picking up my burger and taking a big bite out of it.
I walked back into the A&E (Accidents and Emergency) ward and I was directed by the head nurse for this ward to bay 3 along with two other residents. I draw open the privacy curtain to see a woman looking worriedly at her son who was lying on the bed. She rises from her sitting position immediately we walked in.
“Good Afternoon, I’m Dr. Noah and these are Dr. Cindy and Dr. Mark” I said gesticulating towards the two doctors beside me. “How can we help you?”
“Good afternoon, doctors” she replied before turning to her son. “He had been complaining of Ear pain and headache for some days now and then yesterday he started running temperature and this morning the ear was swollen” she informed us
“Okay” I said, nodding my head.
I didn’t want to jump to conclusions so I decided to do a physical exam on the ear just to be certain on my assumptions. I asked for an otoscope (a medical device used to look into the ears) which I used to inspect his ears and I noticed that his tympanic membrane (ear drum) was red, bulging and immobile which was a highly associated with acute otitis media (a painful type of ear infection which occurs in the air filled space behind the eardrum – the middle ear) along with his other symptom. It is caused by bacteria or viruses. I had an idea that it was an ear infection but I wanted to make sure which it was and the red bulging ear drum is very definitive clue.
I gently explained what her son was experiencing and that it was common in young children. I also gently explained to her that this was an accident and emergency and this was neither an accident nor an emergency and she could have simply gone to any of the clinics closest to her or better still the free clinic beside the hospital but we would still attend to her since she was already here.
I prescribed a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug to relieve the pain, decrease the inflammation and reduce the fever and also antibiotics to stop the growth of the bacteria and kill it. I told her to go to the pharmacy at the free clinic to get it so she wouldn’t have to pay elsewhere and she was very appreciative.
“Dalu o, nwa m” she said in Igbo. (Thank you, my child)
I think she forgot that I might not be able to understand her and she made to correct herself by switching to English but I stopped her by replying.
“Nsogbu adighi” I replied with a smile. (No problem)
She was taken aback a little and then she asked if I was Igbo because I didn’t look it and I explained that I had an Igbo mother. She thanked us once more before leaving to get the medication.
I turned to face the other doctors who also had surprised looks on their faces.
“I didn’t know you could speak Igbo” Dr. Cindy said and I just shrugged in response.
I excused myself leaving them stunned as they followed behind me and we moved onto the next patient and the next till my shift was over and I left for home.
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