Sunday, December 5, 2010

2 Advent

My favorite thing about finishing a wards month is being back at church. Today, the second Sunday in Advent, I served as subdeacon. After the service, we gathered to celebrate the recent ordination of a member of our parish, and to decorate gingerbread houses. Sam took to the task with enthusiasm and his house is now proudly displayed on our dining room table.

In unrelated house news, our house buying situation remains maddenly up-in-the-air. It appears we'll close a day or two after my three weeks of vacation end, just days into my ICU rotation. Ugh. But at least some needed repairs are moving forward relatively swiftly; the house is tented for termites as I type; tomorrow the roofers arrive, weather and G-d willing.

The upside of the delayed closing, of course, is that I'll get a real vacation this month. Sam and I plan to spend a few days in Seattle watching on with excitement as my sister chooses the dress she'll be married in come June. Otherwise, we'll be at home. We'll nap/park/library when it suits us, maybe do some holiday baking should the mood strike ... and that's about all I have "planned".


The break also affords me the chance to reflect on my first month as wards resident. The job entails running a general medicine wards team, responsible for supervision and teaching for two interns and two medical students. I, in turn, was supervised by an attending physician, but that person was only in the hospital intermittently, and generally left diagnostic and treatment decisions to me. It marked a big change from internship for me, and I'll freely admit that I was nervous about the new responsibility. But the month went well: we took good care of our patients, my team and I. We learned from them and from each other. We even had some fun.

One call, the night float intern poked her head into our team room. She had an EKG in her hand and a worried look on her face. "I need a little help," she said and handed me the EKG: wide complex tachycardia. I was out of my chair before she could describe the patient. Together, we pushed adenosine, called a code, prepared for cardioversion, and sent the patient, a cachectic woman with lung cancer, to the ICU. A few hours later, I found a little note taped to my keyboard: Thanks for the back-up.

Ahhh. This job is starting to get good.