Thursday, November 06, 2008

Multitasking at its Best

Today, I had another obstetrician appointment. Dr. Liske sometimes seems to have a huge backlog of patients and other days, she seems to be completely on-time. I wondered how this huge discrepancy could arise from week to week. She always seemed so professional yet efficient during my appointments, I didn't see her wasting a lot of time. Why then, could she get six patients behind some days?

Well today was one of those days where there are too many patients for the number of seats in the waiting room. And just as I sensed my turn was approaching, about fifteen minutes after my scheduled appointment, I saw Dr. Liske snatch up her red jacket (that matched her Crocs), throw it on overtop of her scrubs and breeze out of the office with a quick but gentle mention to her secretary, "I'll be right back."

The secretary exclaimed to the other secretary, "I hate it when this happens." Then she looked at me apologetically and said, "Do you mind waiting a little while? Dr. Liske has to deliver someone."

My eyebrows went up. Surely this would take longer than "a little while". But I had taken the Burlington city bus to the Appleby GO train station, ridden the GO for fifteen minutes, then walked for 20 minutes with a severely over-loaded bladder to get here and I wasn't going to go through that again on another day, so I opted to stay.

Twenty minutes later, the secretary looked up and said to me, "She's back....and Melissa, you're up next." I stood, not having seen the doctor actually re-enter the office. And sure enough the secretary suddenly said, "Oh don't stand in the doorway, she's about to come through...."

I stepped to one side and turned around and Dr. Liske swept in like an autumn breeze, already removing her jacket, and smiling at me as she walked she said, "Okay, Melissa. Here I am. I'm sorry about the delay."

I was baffled that that was how long it takes the good doctor to:

a) race across the parking lot to the hospital (it's a ten minute walk for me door-to-door)
b) get to the proper birthing suite
c) get scrubbed up
d) tell the lady to push, push, push
e) make the catch
f) stitch where necessary
g) deliver the placenta (if you don't know about that stage of labour, you need to read more books)
h) race back across the parking lot to the office building and climb the stairs to the front door

It gave new meaning to the word "multitasking". I remember thinking some days that I was just racing around without a moment to think or breathe. Well, suddenly all those feelings seemed trivial compared to this woman's typical day.

Dr. Liske was at my side in moments while I stood on the scale. "Again, sorry about that," she said. "Oh goodness, don't worry. Don't rush," I said, "Is everyone alright? Mum and baby?"

The doctor smiled at me as we entered her office, "Babies. It was twins."


Anonymous said...

Oh My God. What an amazing woman. -- Alison

Anonymous said...

see ... like i said, you barely need the doctor .. be nice to the nurses!!!!!!!!!!!!

delirious said...


Anonymous said...

hilarious story. the funniest shit happens to you.

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