A Good Reason to Stay Hydrated

Well the really lovely weather left us as quickly as it came, and currently it’s a weird combination of windy, sunny and rainy. I can’t complain as such, there are some great rainbows when it’s like this. This might be a death blog, but I’m British therefore I still must refer to the weather a lot and rainbows are just pretty.

Fancy Double Rainbow

I’m not certain I’ve mentioned it before, but we have another hospital mortuary that we cover as part of the same NHS trust. The other one is smaller, there are no post-mortems or community deaths there and it is only open for regular hours in the afternoon. Recently I joined a rota where we cover for week long stints and this week just so happened to be my first week. I was a little apprehensive of being there on my own but the afternoon flies by because it’s quite busy and it’s good for gaining confidence in doing tasks. People seem to think that being on your own in a mortuary is the worst thing because you are alone with the people there. Hardly, I think the worst thing is being ridiculously busy with the phone ringing, doorbells going off and not being able to cover it all!

My confidence levels with completing the evisceration have come along leaps and bounds too. Maybe that’s why I had a small accident this week. Every single APT I have spoken to has a story about hurting themselves at some point in their career, and numerous other stories about colleagues injuring themselves. Probably not unlike when I was an archaeologist and everyone had a story about hurting themselves somehow. I was lucky that the worst that ever happened back then to me was a severe case of sunstroke in all honesty. Comes with the territory of a physical job as such but that doesn’t mean I take it less seriously I must assure you!

I slipped during evisceration and managed to cut a very tiny slash into my glove, and my second layer of glove and right through to my top knuckle of my index finger. Teensy cut, a bit like a paper cut. It doesn’t hurt, but I had to follow the protocol of what you do when you hurt yourself which is wash and bleed repeatedly, bandage, report the incident and then get myself up to Occupational Health for an appointment. They advised that they take bloods and then again at six weeks for comparison, they also gave me a booster for my vaccinations. I had heard the common phrase in hospitals of ‘needlestick injury’ before from my induction trainings and I knew these were taken very seriously. My cut is technically not one of these but is treated exactly the same. It’s great to know that in the event of something a lot more serious I would be covered by this and seen as quickly. In hindsight, I can only say it was a mistake and I will be more vigilant in future. Please let me also assure you that though there are stories, incidents are few and far between and this is not on everyday occurrence!

My plaster collection is coming along nicely

The title this time around refers to when they tried to take blood from me. Apparently, as I was told, a glass of water and one cup of coffee is not enough to be hydrated by mid morning. They couldn’t find a vein in my arm and had to go in the back of my hand. They also notified me this will bruise nicely although nothing has appeared as yet and it just aches quite a bit.

I shall leave you midweek with a recommendation- Monday night I went to see a Funzing talk by Sarah Wise on Grave robbing and grave robbers in London. It was fascinating and such great value for money! After having a look at some of the upcoming talks, if you are in the city or able to get there I cannot recommend them any more highly.

Thank you for reading, and I’ll update you at the weekend after a very exciting cemetery visit.

MG x

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