My job as a Respiratory Therapist is at the head of the patient’s bed. That’s where I was last night, at the head of a very sick patient’s bed. Then I got a call to go to another very sick patient’s bed. Well, to get out of the current room, I had to navigate a plethora of machines. For example, life support machines, X-ray machine, EKG machine, ultrasound machine, IV pumps, blood warmer, and patient warmer. I also had to navigate a spider web of wires, tubes and lines. Chest tube, monitor wires, life support tubing, suction tube, IV lines, etc. Then there was the stepping stool, the TRASH CANS, and the Doctor. The Doctor was at the patient’s bedside talking to the family on the other side of the patient’s bed.
I tried to squeeze between the Doctor and the trash cans when I felt a slight tug on my right tennis shoe. I knew immediately that I had gotten tangled in one of the many IV lines. I froze instantly, and lost my balance. I started falling. I had to catch myself, because if I fell, I would pull out the patient’s much-needed IV lines. Not only would pulling out the IV line be detrimental to the patient, it would be detrimental to me. (Have you ever pissed off a nurse? Just pull out her patient’s IV and see what happens. The entire Gracie Clan would run in fear.) The only thing I could grab to stop the fall was the Doctor. So I did. I grabbed him with both hands. My left hand grabbed his left bicep. It was right there in easy reach. But my right hand went behind him and landed on his right butt cheek.
Yeah, I grabbed the Doctor’s butt. I didn’t just grab it, I palmed it like a NBA player palms a basketball when he’s going in for a slam dunk at the last second of a championship game. Then I froze. Mortified. My right foot still tangled in the IV line. Handful of Doctor butt. Face red. If I let go I still fall and pull out the IV line, and piss off the nurse. I don’t want to piss off the nurse. So, I continue to hold the Doctor’s butt.
Mean while, said Doctor had been explaining the patient’s situation to the family. At the time of said butt grab, he stopped mid sentence and uttered a “DOH”. My reply, “I’m so sorry I grabbed your butt.” Then I start trying to shake the IV off of my tennis shoe. You know how a dog shakes his leg when you scratch him just right? Yeah, that was me shaking my leg like a dog in the midst of the best scratching session ever while holding onto the Doctor’s butt. I managed to escape the IV, but not the mortification. Thank goodness the Doctor’s I work with have a sense of humor. Or maybe not. I don’t think I’m ever gonna live that one down. Yeah, I’m gonna be hearing butt grabbing jokes for a very, very long time.