Sunday, July 1, 2012

I Did a Scary Thing

I assisted at work! Well, kind of. Let me explain. Dave and I are working at my father-in-laws oral surgery practice this summer. His brother Matt is also a doctor there so it's been really fun. Everyone that works there is super nice and I probably don't have to mention how fun it is to work with Dave, but that's awesome too. When else will I ever get to work with my husband? I tried to convince him to be a middle school teacher with me but he said no for some reason.

Anyway, I was really grateful for the opportunity this summer to work there, but also really nervous. I HATE GROSS BODILY THINGS. I didn't want to admit that to Dave's family because I thought they would think I was a wimp and I was grateful for the job so I accepted but Dave will tell you I was so worried about this summer going into it.

I have discovered, though, that I can handle blood and...mouth smells....and...gums better than I thought I could. I spend most of my time scrubbing the instruments, cleaning the rooms after surgery and exams and putting the tools and things away after they get sterilized and other jobs like that. So I have seen more than my fair share of bloody stuff and the other day, while digging through a trash bag trying to find the four baby teeth that I was not supposed to throw away (we give baby teeth back to the patients with a letter from the tooth fairy) I realized that though this should freak me out, it wasn't. I even have started to learn how to do things like draw drugs for patients and monitor heart rates and IVs during surgery. It's been really fun and I've learned a lot.

However, I still had one hurdle left to jump. I get really freaked out when I look in someone's mouth during surgery. I can handle blood but the idea of open wounds scares the heck out of me. I've been getting better though. On Friday, I was working in the Cedar City office and one of the assistants comes and asks me if I want to try assisting on the next surgery. I looked at her like she was crazy. The assistants do a LOT. They are really skilled and know exactly what took the doctor is going to need and have it ready for him. Dave knows how to do it but I never even considered learning because it takes a lot of knowledge and I just...hate needles and scalpels!

But I figured, what the heck, if I never tried I'll never know if I can even do this, and I like trying something just to say I did it. Sherrie, the assistant that suggested it, asked Dave's dad if he was ok with it and apparently he said "oh, she won't do it, she hates bloody stuff" but when I said I could handle it he agreed to it. Sherrie and Wendy, another Cedar assistant were in the room gloved up and everything and they coached me through the entire thing. I did have to sit down once though, which was embarrassing and unfortunate but once the room stopped spinning I got back up and kept going. I definitely didn't do that great of a job and without the other assistants there it would have been a disaster but I can say that I did it! I really never thought I would be able to something like that. I felt so empowered! Sherrie texted Dave the above picture (he was working in St. George, where we usually work--I was just filling in that day) and he couldn't believe it. When I got back to St. George everyone thought it was staged because they know I'm a wussy teacher and not a brave surgical assistant by nature!