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Rated: ASR · Short Story · Other · #1853523
Phoenix has his ECT treatment...
Phoenix woke up around 0800 that morning.  He did not have to be at the hospital until 1000.  Unable to eat or drink anything, he took his heart rate medication with a tiny sip of water as he was told to by the nurse and then brushed his teeth.  He had bedhead, but that would have to do because he could not have wet hair for the procedure.  He laid down in bed and thought for an hour or so.  His thoughts were not of the anxious sort, but they were of the procedure and how it would go.  His spouse took him over to the hospital when it was time and he checked in at Admissions.  They all knew Phoenix by now, and he got a warm greeting.  The lady he was working with even gave him a pen.  "Lord knows, you've paid for it."  The hospital pens, though cheap and bought in bulk, worked extremely well.  He went down to Outpatient Surgery and checked in there as well.  His spouse had to park some distance away and eventually showed up to wait with Phoenix.  Soon, they took Phoenix to a room and, after giving them a weight of 94.4 kg and a urine sample, Phoenix was hooked up to the IV.  The blood pressure and pulse oximetry and temperature were all part of the process as well.  Phoenix and his spouse visited to pass the time.  Phoenix's spouse had to go to work, though, and left the cell phone number to be reached at in Phoenix's lap, where he would keep it throughout the procedure.

Finally, the nurse from the Recovery Room came down to get Phoenix.  She wheeled his bed to the elevator, down the hallways, and into the Nemo Room, where they performed the ECT treatments.  For some reason, Phoenix was nervous, and his left foot was shaking.  He could not help it and he could not make it stop.  A surprise walked in the door - not his doctor, but the doctor that took care of him when his doctor was not available.  Phoenix greeted him and asked if his doctor was back yet.  "Well, we're all holding our breath wondering if he's going to make it through the day.  Forty hours on a plane..."  Wow, Phoenix thought.  Where on earth did he go?  Poor fellow.  Phoenix was glad that he was back safe, though, and glad that this other doctor was doing the procedure since his doctor was in such rough shape.  The nurse and the anesthesiologist and the psychiatrist were all there.  The nurse put a mask on Phoenix's nose and mouth and the psychiatrist told him to breath in deeply, all the way in and all the way out.  The psychiatrist announced that he was ready and soon, the anesthesiologist was injecting the anesthesia.  It stung as it entered Phoenix's wrist through his IV.  This was his favorite part of the entire procedure itself.  Such a calm feeling before passing out, like holding your breath, but he was breathing pure oxygen instead, which gave somewhat of a high.

Phoenix awoke after the procedure feeling groggy and confused.  As he became more alert, he recognized where he was and what had happened.  He still could not tell anyone the date or anything for important facts, but he was becoming more coherent by the moment.  His spouse arrived, saying the cell phone's voice mail function had to be reset, as it did not even ring when the hospital called.  After a sufficient amount of time had passed to allow Phoenix to regain enough function to walk, the nurse took out the IV and called the volunteer wheelchair service.  Phoenix's spouse pulled up close to the building and Phoenix carefully got in the van from the wheelchair, thanking the volunteer.  The two of them went for lunch and then home so that Phoenix could rest.  It was 1350 in the afternoon.

Phoenix's spouse had to go back to work and asked if he would be okay by himself.  Phoenix replied that he would and bade his spouse goodbye.  At 1405, Phoenix texted his friend to let her know he was done and that his spouse was at work.  "You're alone?  You shouldn't be alone."  Phoenix asked her if she wanted to come over.  "Sure.  I'll come babysit."  Phoenix laughed.  His friend was there soon and brought him some tea.  She brought her cross-stitching and they visited for a while before Phoenix decided to play his guitar.  This was the first time his friend had seen his new guitar.  Phoenix also gave her the arrangement of "Clocks" by Cold Play that he had found online for her to learn on the piano.  She was impressed and thanked him.  He played it for her on the guitar, which she also thought was impressive.  After a while, she came over and pressed her hand against his cheek.  She was freezing!  Phoenix's apartment was always freezing.  The warmest it ever got was 65 degrees.  They decided to cook some off-brand macaroni and cheese, which turned out to be good.  With perfect timing, Phoenix's spouse got home from work, so Phoenix and his friend left to do a few errands and then go to coffee.  It was his friend's sister's birthday, so they went to Hastings for a gift card and an anime season, Albertson's for a gift bag, her house to give it all to her sister.  It turned out well.  After his friend combed the dog outside to get some of the loose hair off of him, the two of them went to the coffee shop and found one of their favorite tables free.  Perfect!  Phoenix studied his guitar music while his friend studied homework and then cross-stitched.  "You know, you could bring your guitar here."  Phoenix said he might once he gets better.  They laughed.  After several hours, it was time for Phoenix to rest, and his friend took him home.  It had been a good day.
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