Hey Can We Turn Off The Heart Monitor While I Do This Surgery, It’s Making Me Really Nervous

Do you mind unplugging that boop-boop-boop thingy? Yes, I know what it’s called and what it does but right now it’s doing nothing but make me nervous and, you know, monitor the patient’s heart rate or whatever. 

Regardless of the patient’s vitals during this major surgery, I’ve got butterflies in my tummy, I’m really sweaty, and my mouth is dry. In my professional medical opinion, my mouth is way drier than it should be. I suppose the sweat pouring out of me drained all the moisture from my mouth—I don’t really know how that part of the body works. 

What I do know is that none of the parts of the patient’s body will work in a medical event called “immediate death” if we don’t silence the distractions from my work environment immediately. Her precious life—which is being oh-so EMPHATICALLY monitored—is in my clammy, pale, trembling hands.

I tried imagining her naked but since she’s already naked and I’m not singing Ladies Who Lunch at the high school talent show, it didn’t work though I will say that when I imagined an already-naked person naked, she was very naked. But I remained very nervous. So I imagined her clothed and that made it difficult to locate the parts of her body I’m supposed to be operating on which transformed my general anxiety into a profound disquiet.

Finally, silence! Thank you! And while you’re at it, shut off that beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep machine. I feel fine, it’s just a tad dramatic for my taste.

~Robert Criss

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