“I thought about running directly into traffic,” says Dr. Jane Smith of her state of mind after seeing 22 walk-in patients in 90 minutes. “That’s technically only 4 minutes per patient. But then I thought I’d have some fun.”
Smith instead dismantled her office. Colorful postcards from previous trips to New Zealand, Zambia and the South Pacific went down first, followed by whimsical Peanuts and Calvin & Hobbes cartoons. Family photos went next.
“I needed to feel exactly like I was walking out of this wretched clinic one last time,” explains Smith. “I wanted every detail to feel as real as possible for me.”
The Enya CDs she used to calm herself when kids were screaming non stop at the scale, her phone was ringing and medical assistants lining up out the door like magpies was broken over one knee and flung in the trash.
“I can’t believe I bought Ariel stickers when I started working at this God-forsaken place,” Smith states, as she rips them to shreds and tosses them in the wastepaper basket. “I was such a naive fool. Damn you, little Mermaid! Did you know that in the real story, she kills herself by sublimating into sea foam? So, the ocean is essentially her tears of sadness. Boom!”
“This is what being nice for years on end does to a person,” she continues, punching a stuffed Tigger in the gut repeatedly. “I do this so I don’t say what I really want to say.”
“I wanted to go all Office Space on the goddamn photocopier, but I figure the office ladies will need that come Monday, and that’s not a nice thing to do to them.”
When asked, Smith also admitted to fantasies about calling unruly kindergarteners on their lousy behavior whilst getting shots.
“No Brayden, no! You are NOT a good boy. You kicked a pregnant nurse in the stomach, which means you kicked a baby. You’re a BAD boy, and you don’t get a lollipop!” Smith never said but wanted to about 900 times.
“Since I’m always the last person to leave this place at night, it’s easy to rehearse my darkest dreams,” says the pediatrician. “I have a safe place to let the rage escape.”