April 26, 2022

ER 10.20, Abby Normal: Real Live Doctors

Posted in TV tagged , , at 4:59 pm by Jenn

Julianne Nicholson, who plays Jordan, is also very good in “Mare of Easttown”

Summary: Weaver is meeting with Brooks in her office to discuss the visitation offer on the table for Henry. She’s justifiably upset that she’ll only get to see her son two weekends a month until custody is decided. Brooks warns her not to violate the order. Florina will be there to pick up Henry at noon, and Weaver needs to hand him over. Brooks agrees that this is a horrible arrangement, but until the trial is over, there’s nothing he can do.

At the airport to pick up Kem, Carter smiles at a little girl running to meet her dad. His face lights up even more when he sees Kem after weeks apart. At County, Neela’s made herself at home in the neuro lab and seems to know what Colin and Yuri are doing even better than they do. Abby’s still in her psych rotation, and she’s squeezing in some study time so she can retake her boards. Nelson advises her to choose TB whenever it’s an answer option.

Abby runs a group-therapy session, welcoming a new patient, George the flasher. One patient is missing and the others inform Abby that he killed himself. You’d think Nelson would have mentioned that to Abby ahead of time. The patients assure Abby that it had nothing to do with her. The rest of them really enjoy her sessions.

Monday: Weaver is in the middle of booking a flight when Elizabeth brings over some hand-me-downs. She notices Weaver’s suitcase, so Weaver says she’s taking Henry to see a friend in Seattle. Elizabeth asks if traveling to Seattle requires a passport now. Weaver says she lost her license and needed another ID. Elizabeth warns her not to do anything she’ll regret.

Abby does a psych consult on one of Morris’ patients, a guy who was found walking down Michigan Avenue with a sword. Um, he was practicing for the Battle Royale. Mind your own business. He only hurt a guinea pig. Jordan is brought into the ER with another seizure (well, a “seizure”). Abby stops Chen from giving her medication and tells her and Morris that Jordan has a conversion disorder. She wouldn’t meet with psych, so she’s not receiving treatment.

Her husband, Nick, tells Abby that she’s been having multiple “seizures” a day. Abby says she needs to see a psychiatrist. Nick asks to talk to “a real live doctor,” but she says any other doctor will say the same thing – Jordan won’t get better if she doesn’t talk to a psychiatrist. Nick doesn’t really respond, so Abby calls Nelson.

Elizabeth asks Abby if she’s talked to Weaver lately. She’s worried that Weaver is going to run away with Henry. She thinks Abby should talk to her about it. Abby says she’s sympathetic but not a close enough friend to talk Weaver out of it if that’s what she’s decided to do. Elizabeth implies that Weaver doesn’t have any closer friends.

Sam and Luka make small talk in the lounge, with Steve still the elephant in the room. She tells Luka he should be leaving soon, and also, they’re not sleeping together. Luka doesn’t have a response to that. Carter takes Kem to their new home, that brownstone he bought, which he’s fixed up pretty well. He’s gotten started on the nursery.

Weaver takes Henry to work with her since Florina will be picking him up there. Abby offers to come get her when Florina arrives, but Weaver doesn’t want to keep her from her work. She admits that she’s not sure she can hand her son over to someone else. Abby assures her that Henry will end up living with her permanently.

Nelson and Abby try to convince Jordan that her condition is psychological, not neurological. They want to admit her to the psych ward until they figure out what’s going on. Jordan’s understandably worried about that, but Abby notes that she could accidentally hurt her baby, Caroline, if she goes home without any treatment or explanation of what’s going on with her. Jordan and Nick agree that she should stay.

Nelson praises Abby for having the perception of a psychiatrist, the bedside manner of an ER doctor, and the sympathy of a nurse. Abby jokes that she has the whole package, minus the board certification. Florina arrives and asks Abby if she’s going to get Henry for her. Someone told her to look for Abby, and Florina thought it was because Weaver wanted to avoid her.

Abby tells Florina to stay in the waiting area while she goes to the lounge. Weaver and Henry aren’t there. The guy with Florina (who I assume is her lawyer) warns that if Weaver doesn’t give them Henry by the appointed time, she’ll be violating a court order. Abby really doesn’t care and even tells the guy to shut up. She heads outside and finds Weaver in the ambulance bay, showing no intentions of running away. She reluctantly gives Henry to Florina, who doesn’t say anything to her.

Wednesday: Carter and Kem have set up a lot of the nursery but will need to find room for the crib the ER staff sent them (though they already have one). Kem’s a little freaked out about having a boy, and about having a baby in general after so little time together. Carter’s pretty calm, saying they chose to have a baby together because they thought it was right. He invites her to meet Jack that night.

Ken and Abby meet with Jordan and Nick to discuss how their marriage is after having a baby. Ken asks if Jordan is worried about how her condition affects her ability to take care of her daughter. Jordan gets defensive when he implies that she might not want to get better. Abby gently says that some patients feel safer in a hospital environment. Jordan insists that’s not her and accuses Abby of believing that she’s faking her condition.

Later, Ken tells Abby that Jordan can have outpatient therapy, but if she doesn’t improve, he’ll have to file a report with the state saying she’s not a safe caregiver. Abby knows that’ll make things worse. She doesn’t think Jordan is abusive. Ken says he would do the same if she had, say, epilepsy and wasn’t being treated. Abby promises not to release Jordan until her condition is under control and she’s not a danger to Caroline.

Kem and Carter go to the Carter mansion, where she meets Jack for the first time. He’s friendly but not very warm since they’re about to attend a Carter Foundation meeting. There, Carter announces that he’s donating the mansion to Northwestern for use as a conference center and housing. The foundation was supposed to be for the arts, so this is a big departure from what Millicent and John I intended. The board isn’t happy.

After the meeting, Jack asks if Carter’s making all these changes in his life because he’s using drugs again. Carter just laughs him off. Jack turns down Kem’s invitation to have lunch with them. Carter reminds Jack that Millicent left him money and the house because she trusted his judgment in their use. Jack doesn’t think she would be pleased with what Carter’s doing with them. He says goodbye to Kem, adding that he’s looking forward to getting a wedding announcement from her and Carter.

Jordan and Nick’s neighbor brings Caroline by to see them while Abby’s trying to ignore George, who’s annoyed that a vending machine ate his money. George, buddy, be glad you’re not in jail for flashing teen girls. Jordan has a “seizure” while holding Caroline, and Nick decides she’s not getting better, so he should take her home. Abby and Nelson think that since her last “seizure” occurred when Nick was visiting, he might be the stressor triggering her condition. But he was there yesterday and she was fine, so Abby disagrees. She thinks Caroline is the trigger. Jordan tearfully tells Abby that she just wants it to stop.

Neela treats a teen named Elgin who burned his hands working at a burger place. Pratt, who knows him, comes by to say hi and Haleh shows him that Elgin’s blood pressure is really high. Pratt asks if Elgin is on drugs, but Elgin insists that he doesn’t use. Pratt doesn’t believe him and tells Neela to order a tox screen. She has to go back to the neuro lab, though, to do something with a mouse brain. Glamorous!

Luka runs into Sam and they make more awkward small talk. He’s still avoiding her because of Steve. Neela finds Yuri and Colin experimenting with ketamine, but not on a mouse – Yuri took it himself. They’ve been doing this for a while, hopefully not while they’re supposed to be working. Abby has a session with Jordan, trying to get her to talk about anything she’s keeping buried that might be causing her condition. Jordan won’t open up because Abby won’t share her own secrets.

Abby gives in and shares her struggles to follow through in her life. She always looks for an excuse to stop when things get hard because it’s easier to give up than risk being disappointed. This applies to relationship, family, and career. Jordan thinks Abby’s family must be proud that she’s in med school. It’s her turn to talk, but she won’t, so Abby calls it a day.

Jordan stops her by revealing that she had a baby eight years ago, before she met Nick. Charlie died of SIDS when he was two months old. Abby asks why Jordan never mentioned her son before – obviously it’s relevant information. Jordan disagrees, thinking that was just something horrible that happened to her years ago and isn’t related to her psychological disorder. Oh, Jordan.

Yuri is high and declaring his love for Neela. His heart rate starts rising so Neela makes him lie down on the floor. He has some sort of minor heart condition, and the ketamine has kicked it into overdrive, so Neela and Colin take him to the ER. Colin wants to keep the situation quiet since no one’s supposed to know about this side project. Pratt helps Neela stabilize Yuri in the middle of the ER, with no time to get him to a real bed. Yuri declines to be admitted and monitored so there won’t be a record of what happened.

Elgin’s tox screen was negative, and it doesn’t sound like Pratt found an explanation for his high blood pressure. Elgin tells him and Neela that he and his mother work different shifts to trade off caring for his four younger siblings. The kids’ fathers are no help. Elgin’s blood pressure is still high, but Pratt thinks he just gets nervous around doctors.

Neela’s concerned, but Pratt doesn’t care about her opinion since she’s spending more time in the lab than in the ER. Pratt brings up Gallant, thinking Neela should feel worse about how that whole situation turned out. His friend took a hit and Neela’s being wishy-washy about what she wants her specialty to be. If she doesn’t want to be a trauma doctor, fine, but she needs to decide because right now she’s just “taking up space.”

Monday (these time stamps are dumb): Abby meets with Jordan in her room, wanting to talk more about Charlie. She didn’t have any counseling after his death, and Abby doesn’t think she’ll get past it if she doesn’t talk to someone. She says Jordan’s mind is playing tricks on her, and there’s more going on than Jordan realizes. Abby offers her some medication that will help her open up about Charlie so Abby can determine if there’s something else Jordan has buried about him.

Yuri’s in trooooooooouble. Colin thinks their experiments are getting them closer to a breakthrough that will help them understand…something about the brain. Neela promises that she didn’t rat them out, and she doesn’t think anyone in the ER did, either. She likes the lab; she’s more comfortable there than in the ER.

Nelson won’t agree to the therapy Abby wants to try with Jordan since it’s not standard. Abby insists that something else has to be going on with Jordan. Nelson worries that giving her the drug will ruin the bond Abby’s developed with her patient. Plus, if she gets the dose wrong, there are serious risks. Abby has covered all her bases but Nelson still won’t give her permission. Abby reveals that she got another doctor to approve the treatment. She’s willing to go to great lengths to keep Jordan from losing Caroline.

Nelson, Ken, and Nick observe as Abby talks to Jordan while she’s on the medication, which basically sedates her while making her more open to talking. Abby asks Jordan about when she realized something was wrong with Charlie. Jordan says she’d had a fight with Charlie’s father, Jake, and he berated her for being terrible at everything, including parenting. He was abusive, and when Charlie started crying, Jordan worried that Jake would hurt him. Abby determines that Jordan accidentally smothered the baby to keep him quiet, and she’s afraid of hurting Caroline.

Elizabeth leaves a message for Weaver, who listens as she records it but won’t pick up the phone and talk to her. Elizabeth is really worried about her and offers her support. It’s a huge change from how much she used to despise Weaver. Back at County, Ken is pleased with Jordan’s treatment but has a new issue to deal with now – Jordan killed her first child. Abby insists that it won’t happen again, but the family will still be monitored until Jordan proves that she’s not a danger to Caroline.

Nelson has more praise for Abby, since she was able to get to the truth, no matter how depressing it was. He offers to help her study for her boards. She’s on her way to take them right now, though, so the next time we see Abby, she might be an honest-to-goodness, board-certified, “real live doctor.” And we’ll get to move on to a plotline that doesn’t involve dead babies! Yay! (Sob.)

Thoughts: Mark and Weaver didn’t get along but I bet he would be happy that Elizabeth gave her Ella’s old baby stuff. Bygones.

I can’t imagine having a baby with someone whose family I’ve never met. I also can’t imagine being Jack and not meeting my grandchild’s mother until she’s almost full-term.

I looked up amytal, the drug Abby gives Jordan, and the two most common result categories were for addiction and truth serum. So let’s keep that away from Yuri and Colin.

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