It's another busy day for Christina Hawthorne, R.N. at Richmond Trinity Hospital.
In the main storyline a mother and her young son come in after a car accident.
The son, Sang, appears fine with just scrapes and bruises but the mother has a minor splenic injury and also has an odd unrelated spinal injury resulting in partial paralysis. Christina assures Sang his mom will be fine but then she crashes. He's sad because she was mad at him while she was driving.
Christina wants to keep Sang out of the clutches of foster care so she claims to the social worker that he still has medical issues- and Bobbie backs her up. Instead, she has him hang out with her throughout the day. But halfway through the day he himself crashes in the cafeteria and Christina doesn't know why.
When they later want to take Sang for exploratory surgery Christina makes the doctor pause and play 20 questions with her. They run over all of the reasons they came in and Christina keeps asking "what can paralyze two peole and leave no trace?" The doctor has an epiphany, the two patients have a rare disorder having to do with low potassium that sometimes affects Asians. With a slow drip, Sang is good
Armed with this knowledge, Christina runs into OR to stop the mom's operation. Wakefield is mad at her for once again thinking she knows better. She says the patients are not guinea pigs, he points out she's not a doctor. He, of course, than does what she told him to do and saves the mother's life without surgery..
Of course this is not the only thing on her plate. Her mother-in-law Amanda comes to visit wondering why she hasn't seen her granddaughter and asks if she can see Camille after her weekend trip. Christina knows nothing of this class trip to D.C. of which Amanda speaks and it doesn't matter because she's grounded. Amanda and Camille come to plead her case- this may be her only chance to take a class trip to D.C. with a black president, her dad would've wanted it- but that's just when Sang crashes.
Later, in her office, Christina lays down the law saying Amanda should act like a grandma- buy gifts, smell like Easter- and Camille should act like a daughter- follow Christina's rules and then bitch about it to her to her friends. It turns out that Christina checked up on the trip and it was fake. Camille was trying to sneak off to New York with her bad influence friend "psycho Suzanne." Camille apologizes to her grandmother for involving her in the deception, Christina says she's in the dog house indefinitely, Amanda realizes that Christina has a tough job on her hands but points out that she does not smell like Easter.
Christina was also checking up on her old friend David, the one with cancer who threw himself off the building a few weeks back when he was distraught over his lymphoma. But miraculously his cancer appears to be gone. Dr. Wakefield has trouble believing this, however, and keeps running tests that are worrying David. Christina tells Wakefield to accept that he did good work, a miracle has happened, and to let David be transferred to ortho rehab like the hospital wants. When he doesn't do that Christina spills the beans and David is thrilled he's going to live. Wakefield isn't so happy about this but, again, points out that Christina was once again, right and he hates it when that happens. He says he's transferring David to rehab in the morning. He points out she won't always be right. She asks if he's sure.
There are three B-stories tonight.
In the first, most trifling, Ray is still trying to get a date with Candy but continues to be thwarted. While taking care of a patient in a crowded room he overhears two guys talking about a rumor they heard about a nurse who provides happy endings. Throughout the episode the horniest of the patients keeps needling Ray to tell him who the nurse is and then implies that even if it's him, a male nurse, he wants the hook-up. This upsets Ray who goes to Candy and warns her to stop giving that extra service to all the servicemen who come in.
She sincerely calls them heroes and gives an impassioned speech, one of the better written ones on this show, about what they go through and wonders what the problem is with giving them some and that Ray makes it sound dirty. He tells her that if these guys heard this rumor others will also including Christina and then her career, and thus her ability to service the servicemen, will be at risk. She agrees he's right and hugs him long and hard. Ray says if she get the urge there's always him. She calls him disgusting but he protests that he meant to talk.
The second involves Bobbie and a young female patient who comes in complaining of a urinary tract infection. It turns out her real problem is an injured right arm that will require amputation, which of course the girl, Lucy, doesn't want. She wants hyperbaric treatment and debreadment. Her doctor nixes this saying the infection is so bad that that treatment would just be postponing the inevitable. Bobbie wants to do what Lucy wants and asks for a vascular consult. The doctor turns her down. Bobbie calls for the consult anyway.
The vascular doc agrees to start the treatment Lucy wants when the original doctor arrives quite angry. He tells her the infection will get in her bones and kill her.
Later this doctor and Wakefield call Christina and Bobbie to task about ordering consults which is not their jobs. Christina acquiesces to this dressing down and reminds Bobbie that only patients can ask for second opinions. Bobbie is justifiably annoyed Christina didn't have her back since she helped her out with Sang. Christina pleads that was a different situation since it concerned a child. She also points out that Bobbie is in a unique position to help this girl accept the amputation. Bobbie doesn't want to be the poster child for amputees. Christina says she will find someone else to help Lucy then.
Bobbie overhears the social worker Madeline trying to help Lucy come to terms. Lucy's not having any of what she calls "BS." Bobbie comes in and shows Lucy her prosthetic leg. She says she won't tell Lucy that she won't have phantom pain, little kids stare at her, and men look at her differently but it won't kill her to lose the arm, but delaying surgery will. Lucy apologizes but says she can't be a freak like Bobbie.
On her way to her vascular consult Bobbie catches up with Lucy again. She says she doesn't miss her leg and is not sure she'd have it back if she could because she became a nurse because she lost her leg so oddly she's grateful that it put her on this path in life. She tells Lucy she could keep the arm out of fear, but then she'll die. She tells her to let it go and live the life she's supposed to.
In the third story, nurse naif Kelly goes through that old TV trope about getting lost in the bowels of the hospital on a mission to get some gelfoam for a patient. She ends up getting trapped with pneumonia patient Mr. Fleming who is prone to running around in his open-backed hospital gown and saying "mommy."
In the dank basement room Kelly confesses to Mr. Fleming how terrible she is at her job after only two months. She freaks about how hard it is and how the nurses are often worried about her. Fleming takes off again leading Kelly to the cafeteria. She finally brings the gel foam to a room and it's empty. Terrified her patient died, she is told by the nurse who sent her on the wild goose chase in the first place that the patient went home and it turns out that they had gelfoam in storage room after all.
|Season 1, Episode 4|
|Air date||July 7, 2009|
|Written by||Glen Mazzara|
|Directed by||Andy Wolk|
"The Sense of Belonging
|Jada Pinkett Smith||...||Christina Hawthorne|
|David Julian Hirsh||...||Ray Stein|
|Christina Moore||...||Candy Sullivan|
|Suleka Mathew||...||Bobbie Jackson|
|Hannah Hodson||...||Camille Hawthorne|
|Michael Vartan||...||Dr. Tom Wakefield|
|Vanessa Lengies||...||Kelly Epson|
|Shanna Collins||...||Lucy Meyers|
|Barbara Eve Harris||...||Karen|
|Richard Marcus||...||Mr. Fleming|
|D.B. Woodside||...||David Gendler|
|Joanna Cassidy||...||Amanda Hawthorne|