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Sunday, November 8, 2015

Across the hall


The nurse began to close the door.

“But those two patients…”

I didn’t mind them, and enjoyed the bustle I could not see.

Two patients yelled constantly. As it was the orthopedic floor, I’m sure most had good reason to make noise. I learned, as I left, one was mentally challenged and one suffered dementia.

I sorted them into two souls early. One called constantly, with a tinge of terror, “Help me.” She was the background.”

The other’s words seemed to change, but I was a day sorting them out to follow her chant. She incessantly called,

Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help! Help!”

                                                            (What she wanted.)

“Here! Here! Here! Here! Here! Here! Here! Here! Here! Here! Here! Here! Here!”

                                                            (Where she was.)

“Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed! Bed!”

                                                            (Her specific location.)

“Amen.”

I doubt any nurse had leisure to sort out that. I pointed out the word we were hearing as I was being discharged—here, here, here. As we went down the hall to the nurse station the word became bed, bed, bed. As I finished signing and was scanned out came the “Amen,” then silence—for a bit.

And I came home.


33 comments:

  1. No!!!!! So sorry to read about your broken arm. Linda@Wetcreek Blog

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  2. That happened when my husband was in the hospital. Someone kept yelling help or they are killing me. It was nerve rattling. TBI or dementia. Hope you are better today.

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  3. My heart is aching for these two women, especially the one who can only say "help me."

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  4. I am sorry to hear that you broke your arm.
    Poor devils, the two of them...

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  5. I'm afraid I'd have had to close the door (and remove my hearing aids)... don't think I could handle listening to their pain without trying to do something. (and knowing that nothing could be done)

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  6. How glad I am you could come home. I saw many patients like those while visiting my mother. The nursing staff rarely had time to attend to them, and they made my heart ache.

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  7. Guess I missed the post about the broken arm. I was reading this post and said to myself, I don't understand. What happened? Then I went back and read your last post. Gosh, Joanne, you do so much. How will you handle it all with a broken arm? I guess the kids will pitch in and help out. I'm sure they do anyway, but now even more so...

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  8. So heart-breaking that they were having problems understanding the situation they were in. It seems as if they wished for someone to know that they needed help. For people in situations like that it would be nice if someone they fell confident with to be able to sit with them.

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  9. That would keep you from feeling sorry for yourself...wait, who am I talking about, heal soon!

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  10. Hari Om
    Ah the background muzak of the medical mayhem... hope that arm behaves and heals well... Huggies, YAM xx

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  11. Every time I visit my mom I hear similar calls and shouts from the dementia patients "help me please, help me please" as they sit in their wheel chairs and watch people in the hallway.

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  12. Heart wrenching though it may be,the two ladies were in hospital receiving care,not prone on the floor at home calling words that no one would hear.
    Jane x

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  13. Oh, that sounds kind of depressing. I hope your arm has now been treated and you can now think you're on the mend.

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  14. Oh dear, for a moment I thought you'd checked into an old folk's home. Heal quickly, hospitals are not good places to b.

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  15. Heartbreaking. My dad called for help a lot in his final hospital stay. He was so helpless (paralyzed completely on one side of his body, weak, unable to understand) and none of the staff had the time to sit and calm him down. I'd go out for an hour, come back and he'd be as upset as if I was gone for days. But when there's only one person doing heavy-duty patient sitting, what can you do? Ah, it still makes me weep.

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  16. I'm sure the nurses/aides have to tune out the "help mes" if they were to get any work done, but it must be hard to do so. I hope your stay in the hospital was a short one and that you heal amazingly quick!

    betty

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  17. Poor souls. I have heard people screaming " help" in a hospital and they are usually ignored by the staff. I know the nurses can't help them, because their demands are constant, but it is sad that they are so frightened and know not why.

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  18. oh dear reminds me of taking care of my father inlaw and once when he was hospitalized and the nurses saying "we didn't think he could walk" why not, he walked when he came in. "we didn't think he talked" why not, he talked when he came in. So glad you are discharged hospitals are not a place to get well.

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  19. I was once in a two person room at the hospital. My roommate had hallucinations...she kept screaming about the cockroaches climbing the walls. I kept scanning the walls until I figured out what was going on with her. The staff finally moved her down the hall to her own room, but I could still hear her!

    Hope you have an uneventful recovery! Take care!

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  20. That's so sad, to hear those poor women.

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  21. All I can say Joanne is that nurses deserve every single penny they earn and more besides for their care, their patience and their stickability. Hope that arm isn;t giving you too much pain.

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  22. we may be living longer as a species but we are not living well. some of us anyway. so sad when the body outlasts the brain.

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  23. I'm so glad you are home. Heal quickly.

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  24. Dear Joanne, so sorry to learn that you broke your arm. That must have been--and maybe still is--quite painful. I'm glad you're home from the hospital. Recovering at home surrounded by all that feels so cosy makes such a difference. Take care . . . and be careful. Peace.

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  25. Oh my, did not know you had a problem, get better.

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  26. I remember hearing all of those same voices when I worked at the nursing home. Hope you heal quickly!!

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  27. Oh dear I hope unlike me it's not your right arm, it is so difficult. You have my full sympathies I know what you're going through. Take care my thoughts and prayers are with you. Chris xx
    PS You get surprisingly better at typing with just one hand after a while and I don't think I will ever get used to using a mouse with my right hand again!

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  28. It's a busy job, they do so much pity doctors didn't do more lower jobs but you know their time is very valuable not all but some.
    Merle..............

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  29. So sorry, Joanne! And I'm glad you're home now. It sounds as though you couldn't have gotten much rest in the hospital.

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  30. Oh, dear. So sorry. Well, a good excuse to get waited on, I think.....

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