A guide to dressing for the ER

I seem to need to check in at the ER on a fairly regular basis. Yesterday, I woke up with what had felt like a bruise the day before but became a painfully swollen thigh overnight. Because I am recently and anxiously off my bloodthinners, I needed a doctor to tell me my symptoms were not those of a blood clot. So off to the hospital we traipsed.

I’m first to admit I’m a bit overwhelmed when I’m headed to the hospital. I’ve learned to dress in comfortable clothes that I can easily whisk on or off as needed. I sorted out the yoga pants that would accommodate the swollen leg, the t-shirt, and the hoodie fairly easily. I didn’t think much about the undergarments (they were clean), although I know some people do. But I was very negligent in picking socks. I was wearing my runners so I randomly chose short old sport socks.

Feet of person wearing dirty sport socks.

Are these lesbo socks?

I should probably explain that, although I generally take considerable pride in my appearance, my sports sock collection is old. Savers of the earth that we are, we don’t wash with bleach, and so my formerly white socks are, indeed, formerly white. Add to this the shedding dog and let’s just say these socks, although very clean, looked filthy. In fact, J. was utterly mortified when I removed my shoes to hop up on the bed. If I recall correctly, her words were: “How could you wear lesbian socks?” I can’t tell you what a lesbian sock is, however; you’ll have to ask J. for the definition.

To be fair, I was a bit mortified by my socks as well. Since the doctor had not yet come in, I begged J. to switch socks with me. (The ability to share clothes is one of many benefits of a same-sex relationship.) Ever the devoted and self-sacrificing partner that she is, J. did indeed agree to switch socks with me. She then proceeded to keep her lesbo-socked feet well hidden under the bed for the rest of our stay.

We remained at the hospital for many hours and left with more questions than answers, thanks to a kind, caring ER doc who concluded: “You are complex.” Because I was not in any immediate danger, this doctor eventually sent me home to follow up with Dr. Blood and Dr. Liver. I’ll admit I shed a few tears out of fear of what this swelling, and some new abnormal blood tests, might indicate. And, because of my vanity, I worried I might now have to deal with a third-trimester leg in addition to my pregnant-looking belly. I see Dr. Blood on Tuesday and hope to have more answers by the end of the week.

Very dirty sport socks

Lesbo socks, for sure.

When I’m scared, I often distract myself by finding something to laugh about. Yesterday it was socks, the previous ER visit, the fellow who chose to groom his toenails in the waiting room. (I am not making this up.)

Laughing about my lesbo socks helped me through an otherwise gruelling and stressful day. If I can’t find the humour myself, I can trust J. to find us both something to chuckle over. I don’t know what I’d do without her (and her socks).


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