On the final leg of our epic journey home, I was forced to answer the dreaded call for A Doctor On The Plane. And I do mean forced, because TrophyHusband, being a much more generous soul than I, volunteered me. (He's a physician too, but since the problem wasn't related to his rather specialized field, I was offered up.) I was the appropriate person, since the patient was a little old Puerto Rican lady having an anxiety attack, nearly indistinguishable from dozens of my own patients. She had some cardiac risk factors, which made the situation a little more worrisome, but she refused aspirin and nitroglycerine anyway. She did allow me to take her blood pressure, reassure her, and administer a chill pill. And my payment for my noble effort? A bag full of all the leftover granola bars the attendants could find. (Well, that and a bag full of the leftover beer.) No free tickets.
It was very odd to try to be the doctor while wearing dirty slides that displayed my chipped and peeling pedicure, grubby drooping jeans, and a T-shirt with toddler smearings on the shoulders. Although I'm a fairly sloppy dresser in private life, I tend to dress rather formally when I see patients—starched white coat, nice shirt, etc. I feel a twinge of disapproval when I see doctors wearing jeans on weekends or students or residents not wearing ties. I realize that this is rather old-fashioned of me, and perhaps ridiculous, but I think that at least some of my patients expect their doctor to look the part, and it seems disrespectful to do otherwise. On the other hand, my white coat does present a barrier of sorts between me and the patient.
What does your doctor wear? Do you think it matters?
Speaking of attire or lack thereof, and not in support of any worthy cause (the way Orange's rack display was, for instance), here is a gratuitous cheesecake shot of me with AngelBaby in the swimming pool:
It's the picture that I will look at in twenty years and think, you know, I wasn't too bad.