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Driving the nurse crazy
With his leg in a makeshift cast for the bus ride home from the skiing trip, Teddy wasn’t used to the extra attention he was receiving. Classmates he had never talked to before were walking to the back of the bus and asking how his leg was.
Truth be told, it wasn’t a big deal. Two of his friends had seen him wipe out on the largest slope and later said he must have broken something with all the cartwheels and somersaults he performed before coming to a resting place. His friends did note that he didn’t stick the landing so they had to deduct points for that.
The Ski Patrol came, examined him, and towed him down the rest of the mountain in a gurney-sled, being careful not to move his right leg.
Now, though, with only a half hour left on the bus ride, he was starting to get nervous. The medical professionals at the ski mountain had recommended he go to the hospital right away for x-rays when he got home. When he heard that initially, his muscles tensed because he knew his mother couldn’t afford additional expenses, if that’s what this would take.
At this point in the trip, Teddy knew nothing was broken, but he had come too far to turn back. He would get an x-ray only if his mother insisted.
When the bus arrived home, his mother was waiting for him. He hobbled off the back of the bus with the help of two of his buddies, and his mother helped him into the back of her car. On the way to the emergency room, she asked him a lot of questions about the trip and his fall on the mountain.
She reassured him that her medical insurance, while minimal, would cover a trip to the ER. Even as she said it, Teddy knew that the extra expense would come out of her pocket. It was the way she said it. But she insisted he go there, so twenty minutes later, she was helping him through the ER admissions entrance.
While Teddy waited for his mom to fill out the paperwork, he closed his eyes and dozed off. She had asked him if he wanted some gum, but he was already snoring away. All the commotion and the drama of the day had worn him out. His mom had completed the paperwork and was discussing the situation with a nurse and Admissions.
The nurse said, “Ma’am, from what I can tell and this is before we’ve even examined him, I think Teddy will just need an x-ray just to be sure. Probably a sprain or a strain. Nothing serious. If something were broken, he’d be in much more pain than he’s in now. If it’s only an x-ray, then your insurance will cover it. If not, we can make provisions for…for someone in your situation. He just needs to get the care he needs.”
“Thank you. Thank you so much. I don’t know how to thank you.”
“Teddy, Teddy, wake up,” the nurse said. “You can come back with me. And Mom, you can come back with him too, but only if you spit out the gum you’ve been cracking so loud for the last five minutes. It’s about to drive me crazy.”
“Oh, I didn’t realize…” Teddy’s mom said before wrapping the gum in the wrapper it had come in and tossing it in the trash. “I guess I was a little bit nervous.”
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