‘Who says you cannot wear native on a weekday?’
I came to work on a Tuesday, looking all Friday. ‘Ahhh, Doctor!you wore native!’ the front desk lady said with all smiles, ‘Noooo! It is suit I wore!’ I responded and went into the office. I settled down and started listening to the radio, I was in the middle of that when a lady came in with her test results. She had seen the Doctor on duty some days ago complaining of discharge and itching but couldn’t do the test that day. As I looked at the results, I noticed she was in a low mood, not saying anything and always looking down. I tried to find out if there was a problem, but she said she was fine. I explained the test results to her, counseled her and prescribed drugs. She stood up quietly and left the office. I can bet she didn’t utter up to 10 words while she was in.
Next patient came in, a mother with her daughter, daughter had been having recurrent headaches, weakness and fainting spells according to mother. Immediately they came in, mother went on a talking spree! Downloading the history of the symptoms and giving me the life history of her daughter while I and the daughter remained quiet all through. She finally finished (like 5minutes later) and was waiting for me to respond. ‘Ma, give me your hospital number’ I said. ‘Oh’ she responded and called out the number. I inputted it into the system and finally asked, ‘What brought you to the hospital today?’. She went on again and at some point, I actually wanted to tell her to allow her daughter to talk but so that it will not be translated as ‘shut-up’, (this is Nigeria people) I allowed her complete it before I turned to the daughter and asked, ‘tell me exactly what’s wrong with you’. This cutely shy SS3 boarder tried to explain what was going on with her but not without the mother interjecting all over the place. I thought about asking her to wait outside cos it felt like the daughter wasn’t free to express herself but with the way she was, she might have created a scene so I thought against it. It was becoming tiring and at some point I said to her, ‘ma, please can you allow me treat your child?’. After trying to get all the necessary info from daughter and of course, mother (the history dey complicated die, mothers can add spice to any gist ehnnnn), I was left even more confused, ‘wetin dey do this babe’ I wondered. An idea came… I sent them to go and do RBS (Random Blood Sugar) in the lab and come back with the results ‘so we can know what were dealing with and treat appropriately’ I said loool. Don’t get me wrong guys, I think I know what I was doing…or not, I needed breathing space (the mother had sapped all my energies with her endless talk) and I needed to consult with ‘higher powers’ *winks. As soon as they left, I began my consultation with the higher powers (I had to be very fast lest they nab me, my bride price will just drop!), higher powers being ‘the guide’ and ‘Prof. Ojini’s headache note’. I quickly went through the notes, jotting all I could & all I had missed out from the history… After some minutes, I heard movements towards my door and I quickly adjusted and entered ‘Doctor’s mode’ loool. ‘Oh, you are back! Have you done the test?’ I asked, ‘She has taken her blood sample’ mother replied. I went back to the history and asked all the questions I had previously not asked. All the answers were pointing towards a migraine. All through this, mother and daughter were going back and forth about ‘ I don’t want drugs/injections, I’m fine- you need the drugs, you are not feeling well, Doctor will give you drugs’. After inputting all the necessary info into the system, I finally faced them. I counseled the daughter about the importance of eating well and taking her drugs especially as she will be writing crucial exams this year(mum had complained earlier about her daughter poor eating habits, the girl lepa gan!). I could see the disappointment on her face and the triumph on her mother’s face when I said she will be given drugs. I pitied the girl, ‘she must have been taken drugs all her life’ I thought. I even thought about scrapping the drugs , ‘if I try it,the mother will just run mad loool’ I said in my mind, someone that was pushing me to add one drug that Oga always gave her daughter for a low PVC PCV (Aso rock takeover has been on my mind no ves, please get your PCV sorry! PVC and vote right!) I just ignored her. After what seemed like forever, they finally left, mother happy she had gotten her wishes, daughter sad she didn’t have her way. ‘What a mother!’ I thought and smiled.
Next patient who came in was the one who had come yesterday (remember the ‘not agile with his concubines’ man looooool) and today he came in with his daughter! Loooool. Adorable, beautiful and sharp 5year old girl who you won’t believe is 5 when you hear her speak! She came in coughing and while I exchanged pleasantries with the father, she kept coughing and then the father coughed and she said, ‘like father like daughter!’. I burst into uncontrollable laughter, her father joined. I laughed till I started feeling pains in my tummy. All through the laughter, she just kept quiet. After we were done laughing, I asked her, ‘how long have you been coughing?’, she told me all about the cough and I assured her she would be fine. All through the consultation, she was gisting with me (children love to talk!) about school, who did what to her, who am I etc. someone listening from outside wouldn’t believe it’s a 5year old talking and she had this efik/Ibibio accent that made her sound funny. After I was done with her, I reviewed the father to know if he was getting better (which he was),prescribed drugs and they left. As I was getting ready to leave for home, a mother came in with her son who had cotton wool soaked with blood on the right index finger. This boy came and was already moving all over the place, ‘this one must be a stubborn lad’ I thought before I asked the mother, looking at her tiredly ‘what happened to him?’. ‘Door jammed his hand’ she replied. ‘OK boy, let me see your finger’ I said as I moved close to him, he was becoming restless and I assured him I was going to be gentle. I took a look at it, ‘not so bad’ I thought and explained to the mother what would be done for him. After documenting, I directed them to the nurses.
As they left the office, I followed them bumper to bumper! Lol