Saturday, December 14, 2013

Silent Night


Another day off yesterday gave me an opportunity to do something I had been wanting to do since Wednesday, but didn't have the ability to because I had no idea when I was going back to work.  And that was spend the night with my mom in the hospital.

After the surgery on Wednesday, my mom was placed in the Critical Care Unit just to monitor that she was recovering OK.  Guests and visitation hours were limited, so I knew that staying with her while she was there would be difficult.  

Then, I received a phone call yesterday morning that changed everything.  My mother crying.  Uncontrollably.  She was in pain, and no way to let anyone know.  She had been left, for 20 minutes, in pain and alone with no one paying her any notice.  

Furious is an understatement to the way I was feeling.  I was 45 minutes away.  I couldn't do anything but talk her through her panic, try and calm her nerves, and beg her to let me call someone to complain.  But, she wouldn't let me.  It wouldn't be so bad if it was the first time it had happened, and that something was going on that caused the nurse to leave for so long.  This was the second time it happened, the first being the day after she had the surgery.

The nurse she was assigned that day was rude, impatient, and seemed like she wanted nothing more than to be out of the room as quick as she came in.  Twice she left my mom sitting in pain and in tears for more than 20 minutes.  

The first time my mom called, the day after her surgery, she told me how she had pushed the call button as her pain had gotten to the level where more pain medicine was needed.  The nurse was in the hallway having a conversation RIGHT OUTSIDE my mom's room.  For 20 minutes, the nurse completely ignored the call button as my mom's pain got worse and worse.  My mom started crying, and when the nurse finally came in, she got short with my mom and told her that there was more important people on the hallway that needed her attention first.  Thankfully, my mom called her out on watching her chit chat for 20 minutes in the hallway, which apparently sent a little fear in to the nurse because she apologized.

The second time was yesterday.  I was sitting at home, and my mom called crying hysterically.  She told me how she had gone to the bathroom and then had just been left there.  Being that she had tubes and pipes coming out her, she couldn't just get herself back in to bed.  Once again, the nurse left her sitting in pain and discomfort.  

I didn't know what to do.  I was 45 minutes away and all I could do was talk her through and panic and try and calm her down.  I offered to start calling the hospital, to find someone to complain to, but my mom wouldn't let me.  The nurse walked in a few minutes later.

When I did make it to the hospital, I asked my mom how it had gone after the incident.  I was told that the nurse's way of dealing with my mom in tears was to totally ignore it.  Didn't ask my mom why she was crying, didn't ask what she could do to make my mom feel better, just unhooked the tubes, gave my mom a shot, and walked out of the room.

I couldn't have been more happy than when the nurse finally came in to tell us that my mom was being moved to a different unit.

From the moment we arrived in the new unit, the nurses have treated my mom exactly how she deserves to be treated.  They have checked on her regularly, asked her if there's anything they can do for her, given her pain medicine ON TIME, and have even been extremely accomodating to me.

When Mom's nurse found out I was planning on spending the night, he immediately got me a cot to sleep on.  No sleeping in a recliner for me!  The cot was actually really comfortable.

During the night, my mom slept peacefully.  I slept peacefully.  All was calm.  All was bright.

This morning, I woke up refreshed and relaxed.  Which is very surprising after spending the night in a hospital.  I ate breakfast with my mom, drank some coffee, and have been sitting with my mom while writing this blog.  

I plan on staying with her until early this afternoon, when my dad and brother will come up and relieve me of my duties.  Not that I consider it much of a "duty".  It's not very often that I get to spend some quality alone time with mom, so I'm happy about it... even under the present circumstances.  

Right now, I'm going to do a bit of crocheting while my mom naps in the chair.  The weather outside is cold and frightful, so I'm perfectly content just hanging out in her room watching some TV and relaxing.  

That's it from me, today....

Have a great Saturday, everyone!


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