October 17, 2008

The Nun's Rash

Yesterday afternoon, I took a break from visiting Cameron in the NICU and went to see the folks at the Dermatology clinic at Penn. My appointment was at 2pm, which, in hospital time, meant 4:15pm.

Knowing that I had some time to kill in the waiting room made my decision of where to sit very easy. Specifically, I bypassed the long row of empty chairs near the television set and magazine rack and parked myself instead in a chair located directly behind four nuns with New Jersey accents. All of the women were in their late sixties at least, and were dressed in matching black clerical garb. Sitting next to one another, the women were virtually indistinguishable, except that one of them had a rash between her legs which she kept itching.

When I approached, the three unafflicted nuns were trying to talk their sister into donating her body to science.
"Let the doctors take a picture of your rash for their 'book,'" said nun #1.
"They could block out your face in the picture if you asked," added nun #2.
"No," said the afflicted.
"You could help other people," nun #2 pointed out.
Nun #3 didn't say anything, but she nodded in agreement.
"I said 'No!'" shouted the afflicted.

Having myself answered the call to pose nude for the clinic's famed "Book of Rashes," (http://themeanestmom.blogspot.com/2008/04/paper-underpants.html) I wanted to offer my moral support to the nun and tell her that both the pictures and the process of taking them really weren't that bad. I kept quiet however, on account that it is unwise to lie, especially to a woman with a four-inch cross draped around her neck.

Finally the nun gave in. After signing a waiver, she was led down a long, dark hallway by a medical student with a pitchfork dangling from her back pocket. Since no one else stood up to the plate, I took it upon myself to give the poor nun her last rites.

After sending their sister off to what would surely constitute the most traumatic 10 minutes of her life, the three unafflicted nuns made themselves feel better by counting their blessings.

"I feel very fortunate that I didn't get that rash," said nun #1.
"I wouldn't want someone taking pictures of a rash between my legs," admitted nun #2.
"Me neither," said nun #2.
"I have a rash between my legs," confessed nun #3. "I've had it since May."

Before I could contract the mysterious rash, I switched seats.

P.S. Cameron is doing great. His red blood cell count has remained stable all week. Although we were hoping for some improvement, we're grateful that the numbers didn't go down. Cameron is eating about half of his feeds by mouth now and he was weaned off the nasal cannula this morning. So far, so good.

Have a great weekend. It's absolutely beautiful in Philadelphia; I hope the weather is gorgeous wherever you're at.


Carrie said...

A nun with a rash between the legs...sounds very interesting!

Glad Cameron is doing well. It will be beautiful in Cincinnati this weekend too...finally some fall weather! Enjoy!

Karen said...

Nuns with rashes between their legs? Me thinks somethings going on there.

So happy to hear Cameron is doing well. Little fighter that one is!

The weather, even here in Florida is supposed to be beautiful!

Have a great weekend!

Aunt MeMe/Mindy said...

Only you Jana, would encounter nuns with rashes between their legs! That is so funny! Thanks for the Friday morning laughs!

So glad to hear the news of Cameron! We are all praying for his recovery so that you can take that little bundle of joy home where he belongs. It is so refreshing that amongst all the chaos and frustration you and your family are going through, you still find the humor in life! What an inspiration you are! You are like my morning cup of coffee!!

Here is Northern Illinois, we are supposed to have a high of 60's on Saturday. Last night got down to 32degrees so winter is on its way! The trees are beautiful with their wonderful fall colors!

Take care of you and yours and have a great weekend!


Rachel said...

Nuns are scary, rash or no.
Glad to hear Cameron is hanging in there. The weather here in the 'Nort woods' (aka Wisconsin) is gorgeous too, the fall colors are amazing. I was born and raised here and it still takes my breath away every fall.

MommaKiss said...

Oh My Garage, you make me laugh and Laugh and LAUGH!
Glad to hear your baby boy is doing OK, too.

Liz said...

Glad you moved seats! LOL

Great news about Cameron..things will only get better! :)

Fall weather's the best, it's raining today.. the rest of the 5-day looks fab here in NC. Lovin' being able to drive through the falling leaves!

Me said...

Nuns with rashes? Very very interesting. How do you encounter these things? Thanks for sharing it though.

Its good to hear that Cameron is doing well! May you continue to see improvements.

Hope said...

I'm not going to comment on the Nun's with rashes.
But I'm so happy Cameron is doing well and holding his own. My son was a bit slow on the healing process, took his sweet time getting weaned off the ventilator, took his sweet time doing everything. It's supposed to be nice this weekend in Seattle, but it's looking a bit gray today.

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

You've made people watching and eavesdropping a fine art. I'm so impressed... really.

Candice said...

I'm guessing we can eliminate STD's right? Maybe not...

Anyway, it's great news about Cameron. I hope he's home with you all very soon. He sure is a cutie!

Anonymous said...

Maybe those nuns should start showering... How has that one lived with one since May? Good job on the seat move, dirty nuns...

Anonymous said...

ew ew ew ew.

Kristina said...

You are a seriously funny woman. I like funny women. Thanks for making everything in life laughable!

Jana said...

I can't stop thinking about the nuns either. I feel so bad for the one that had to get her pictures taken. I am still traumatized from my photo shoot; I can't imagine how violated that poor woman must feel right now.

Anonymous said...

I have suffered through a derm photoshoot as well. I specifically remember the pose where I had to bend forward over the chair so she could get pictures of the back of my leg - ugh, derm porn for sure!!! She pulls the horrid pictures out every time I go back. Hope they do not ever "fall" into the wrong hands - might scare some poor soul :)

Cameron is absolutely beautiful. I am glad to hear things are going well.

Nana's heart said...

Ok---I confess I have a rash in my "knee-pit" (not to be confused with an arm-pit)but after reading your scarey post, I'm just going to skip the dermatologist and invest in a case of anti-itch cream! Now, down to the serious stuff. How is it possible for a baby to be so seriously ill and look so absolutely, squeezably perfect? Talk about a doll!

tifferbob said...

Gotta, loves the sisters encouraging the poor afflicted nun to get the pictures. I love nuns, wanted to be one as a kid but I'm not Catholic.