Anyway, it seems that in my trauma bay I see more than my fair share of people who are either unwilling or unable to learn from what they've done wrong so that they don't do it again. Everyone makes misteaks (myself included, naturally), but unlike many of my patients I try to refrain from making the same misteak twice. This is a lesson that I beat into my children (NOT LITERALLY) on a daily basis. After all, I tell them, if you don't learn from your mistakes, then what the hell is the point of making mistakes. Right? Of course right.
I have to assume that Lacey (not her real name™) didn't have such caring and knowledgeable parents.
Lacey was brought to me in a bit of a heap one fine late evening, the police trailing just behind. That is, as you have probably guessed, never a good sign. When she was wheeled into the trauma bay, she was completely unresponsive, unable even to open her eyes. When I see such a patient, I think of the three Most Likely Possibilities:
- She has a severe brain injury,
- She is drunk (or otherwise intoxicated) as hell,
- She is faking to avoid talking to the police.
Wait, you . . . what? Of course you did. Somehow, that made total and complete sense.
Unfortunately for the general public, the police left without arresting her. I have no idea why and no reasonable suspicion other than that the officer got bored of waiting for Lacey to wake up. So instead of going to jail for endangering every single person around her, Lacey got away with it. Again. She woke up, got dressed, asked me for a prescription for narcotics (HA!), and went home.
I can guarantee that she learned absolutely nothing from this episode, and I can further guarantee with near 100% precision that I will see her again. Probably soon.