Note For Anyone Writing About Me

Guide to Writing About Me

I am an Autistic person,not a person with autism. I am also not Aspergers. The diagnosis isn't even in the DSM anymore, and yes, I agree with the consolidation of all autistic spectrum stuff under one umbrella. I have other issues with the DSM.

I don't like Autism Speaks. I'm Disabled, not differently abled, and I am an Autistic activist. Self-advocate is true, but incomplete.

Citing My Posts

MLA: Zisk, Alyssa Hillary. "Post Title." Yes, That Too. Day Month Year of post. Web. Day Month Year of retrieval.

APA: Zisk, A. H. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from

Monday, July 29, 2013

I can wheel myself in the hospital

Trigger Warning: hospitals, injuries (again, no -isms involved in the injuries themselves,) menstruation, misogyny (against teenage girls, specifically)

I'm still doing the hospital stories thing. This one is the broken leg that never made it onto my medical record. And yes, I'm sure I broke it. There's still a dent in my shin. Second one here, about a pig bite, first one here about a thing I can't actually spell. You can thank Corbett for this series, and my knee for an unplanned fourth edition to come. (Please don't actually thank my knee. Corbett is cool, though.)
I was at a swim meet. I was that kid where if someone was feeling sick and didn't want to swim their event, I was willing to do it for them. (They had to get permission from a coach first, which didn't happen much.) So there was this one time that a person was trying to get out of the 200 meter individual medley. Apparently very few people want it. The coach said she didn't have to swim it if she could find someone else to, which is how I wound up in it. I was the slowest, as per usual in all my events, but I finished. I then swam the 50 meter freestyle right after.
It was hot. I was tired. It was past my normal bedtime. I was hungry. I was probably dehydrated. Then I got the hiccups. I passed out, and came to in the pool. I hit my leg on the way down, which is how I focally fractured my shin. Except I didn't know I'd done that yet.
I go to the hospital, of course. I brought my homework to try to do in the waiting room. I made some progress, so it wasn't a complete waste.
First thing is at check-in, they try to give me pain meds. (What is it with these people and painkillers? I get needing to offer it at least once every time because they don't know I hate them yet, but "I don't use painkillers" means exactly that and they should accept it the first time I say it.) I tell them I don't use painkillers. They say it's just Motrin. That's great, I still don't use them. I don't recall specifying that it is only prescription painkillers I don't use (Yes, I know, it's also an anti-inflammatory. When they're trying to give it to me because it reduces pain, it's a painkiller.) But I think this is another case of them not being used to stubborn 16 year olds who will challenge them and don't want to medicate everything.
I also rolled my eyes at them several times over the pregnancy test they wanted. (They asked when my most recent period was first, which I answered with "right now." That does seem to be the answer most of the time I wind up needing an X-ray...) It took them forever to actually do the test, too. Like, we're on the way out and they're surprised we're not going to wait for the results. Not that results take long, but no. Time to go home.
And of course, the wheelchair. The wheelchair and my stubbornness with that is the reason Corbett thought this would be a good thing to write about. While I was waiting for the X-ray and they thought I might have a broken leg (I did, but it was a focal fracture and they wound up missing it because those often don't show up on X-rays and you don't exactly expect a person with a broken shin to refuse pain meds or be able to walk so that was that,) they stuck me in a wheelchair. It made sense to do that, and I wasn't arguing. What I did argue with was letting the hospital people push the wheelchair. I actually grabbed the wheels and held them stationary every time they tried, while telling them that I've got it. They kept trying. My eventual tactic was to start wheeling before they got to me and stay a few steps ahead. They were scared I was going to hit something, but for a high school athlete in a sport that uses the arms fairly heavily? A manual wheelchair really isn't that hard to control. Besides, I don't think that's what they were really scared of. Patients are supposed to be quiet and not have autonomy and do whatever they're told, and here I was moving independently and demanding that I continue to do so.
Patients aren't supposed to challenge doctors. Doctors are supposed to be all-knowing. A patient does not have autonomy or independence. A patient is essentially a passive object. That night, I ignored all those things- I challenged them on the pain meds, I challenged them on the wheelchair, I moved around on my own no matter how many times they tried to push the wheelchair for me. I called them out on the idea that a teenage girl who passes out is probably pregnant and lying about her sexual activity out of fear of her parents (I'm gray-ace, for pete's sake, and I don't have a sex drive. Besides, I had my period that night. Isn't a heavy period also a thing that can cause people to pass out? Yeah, I thought so, and mine are. They have been for as long as I've had one.) And no, I did not take the Motrin.

1 comment:

  1. Your voice is important, and I am glad you make yourself heard! Thank you.


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