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Author Topic: Looks Can Be Deceiving
snopes
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I woke up at 7A.M, the ninth day of my hospital stay, to see the night nurse writing the day's shift information on the chalk board across from my bed.

Tracy would be the nurse's assistant for the day. I looked to see who would be my nurse and saw the name Lady Di. "Great, just what I need!", I thought. "Some Queen Latifah wanna be with probably more ego than actual nursing experience.

I was definitely not in a good mood. Recovering from emergency abdominal surgery had been a nightmare in itself. The daily injections to keep my blood from clotting and the twice daily finger pricks to check on what suspiciously appeared to be an acute diabetic condition had me at the end of my rope.

I had not eaten since days before the surgery, nothing, not even as much as a sip of water. With tubes in every orifice of my body I looked like death warmed over.

My lips were dry and cracking from lack of moisture and my hair - well let's just say the matted mess was in dire need of a Clairol makeover.

The only good thing I could deduce from this dilemma was that I had lost ten pounds, and even that didn't seem to make much difference now -not with the six inch scar running up my middle.

Every day was a stifling repeat of the one before. At least this day I had something to look forward to. I was curious to meet the royal R.N dubbed Lady Di.

Tracy, my aide, came in to get me ready for my morning bath. She helped to sit me in the bedside chair, placed the tray table in front of me with all the necessary toiletries, then left to help the nurse with a patient next door.

I may as well have had both my hands tied together, what with the tube down my nose and IV's in both hands. I sat there wondering how I was suppose to manage to soap up without getting tangled up in a mess of tubes and cords that were now an external part of me.

The water in the basin was nearly ice cold when an elderly woman poked her head in to see how I was doing. She took one look and correctly guessed that I was in desperate need of an extra pair of hands. She ran fresh, hot water and began the chore of helping me to clean up.

A friendly woman, I was having a hard time trying to place her. She didn't wear the customary smock that the nurses' aides wore. She certainly was not dressed like a nurse. Her scruffy shoes, baggy clothes and tousled hair had me thinking cleaning lady, but they too wore special uniforms identifying their position.

She took a bottle of shampoo out of her pants pocket and began to lather my messy mane with a scent that smelled like floral paradise.

Out of the other pocket she took out body lotion, smoothing it onto my skin until I felt like sweet smelling silk from head to toe.

I still looked a little more than under the weather but my inner spirit was slowly beginning to shine.

I felt more fresh and alive than I had felt in a long time.

She made my bed, cleared everything away, and set up my bedside table so all my essentials were within easy reach. She told me she'd be back in a little while to check on me. That was the first day, since my medical ordeal began, that I truly felt like smiling. I looked into the mirror almost feeling human again, and knowing I owed it all to this mystery woman who whipped me into a better frame of mind with a little TLC.

Tracy returned, apologizing for being gone so long. She immediately noticed I was coiffed and chipper. I tried to describe the wingless angel who hovered around me like a mother hen, giving me a much needed lift with her loving touch of human kindness.

Tracy knew right away who I was talking about.

"Oh that's Diane, she's always helping out whenever she has the chance," Tracy said matter of factly.

That's when I found out that this kind and gentle woman was actually Lady Di, the R.N on duty that day.

I also found out it was the nursing staff who gave her the nick name, Lady Di.

Though she didn't resemble an R.N in appearance, she sure taught me that judging a book by its cover can, often times, be deceiving.

I often think of her, especially when I'm tempted to judge someone solely on looks. Thanks to her I now know better.

I never did find out why hospital staff named her Lady Di but, if you ask me, I think it may be because she treats her patients like royalty; going beyond the call of duty to make a difference in the lives of those who are fortunate enough to cross her path.

There are angels among us, they are blessings in disguise.

The sight of their earthly presence shines a light on blinded eyes.

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tribrats
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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I would think that after 9 days in the hospital with no food or water and so many tubes you couldn't move, you would lose more than just 10 lbs.

ETA: I was out of the hospital and moving around after only 3 days with no tubes after my near-fatal labor and a 8" c-section incision.

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strange_little_girl
The First USA Noel


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I dont think a grubby looking woman wearing street clothes is the best person to be washing someone with tubes coming out of every orifice. Mind you, the nursing care sounds generally poor where she is if she has already got matted hair and nothing to keep her lips from cracking.

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DawnStorm
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by snopes:
The daily injections to keep my blood from clotting

You mean to tell me that one of those tubes doesn't contain heparin, an anti-coagulant? [Eek!]

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Leashes?! We don't need no stinking leashes!!

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Bettie Page Turner
Happy Holly Days


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A nurse's view of this glurge:

1. 9 days in the hospital? Wow! Either this person has wonderful insurance, they are almost dead (not likely, as they are complaining...a sure sign of a patient getting better [Wink] ), or the case managers haven't lit a fire under the doc's butt to get this patient out. The hospital's ALOS must be crappy!

2. An older nurse is not likely to show up for work without a crisp uniform and proper nametag/ID...even less likely to walk into her pt's room and deliver care without introducing herself.

3. I find it sad that (what should be) basic, good nursing care is regarded as special and rare in this story. Unfortunately, I know why this is so. Don't get me started on the need for mandated staffing ratios... [flame]

4. The person writing this glurge has obviously never tried to wash a patient's hair in the hospital. It's quite a chore, just due to the lack of proper equipment. We usually use the waterless shampoo on those who cannot shower or bend over at the sink.

ETA- Dawn, most patients would not get IV anticoagulants unless being treated for an actual clot, certain heart conditions, or stroke. Postop clot prophylaxis is usually subcutaneous injections of Lovenox or heparin, or coumadin tablets. Of course the best prevention is getting out of the bed and walking...and it can be done with the tubes. Just takes some planning and extra help.

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You fail to consider, for such is the tyranny of fashion, that the swan is not a slim animal... -Jincy Kornhauser, Melinda Falling

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Senior
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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Last summer, when I had a bowel resection, I was up and walking the day after surgery. There I was, pushing my IV drip and morphine on demand machine (sorry, don't know the official name) down the hall, with a nurse making sure I remained vertical. I took a shower two days later, my drip site encased in plastic. Two days after that, as soon as I had my first bowel movement, I was out of the hospital.

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Four Kitties
Layaway in a Manger


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Sounds an awful lot like a C-section recovery to me!

Are you sure, Peter? [Wink]

Four Kitties

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TrishDaDish
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
I looked to see who would be my nurse and saw the name Lady Di.
Reminds me of an old joke from the 80's:

A woman looked at me, pointed, and said, "Lady Di."

"Oh!" I said, "You think I look like Lady Di?"

No, what she said was, "Lady, die."

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DawnStorm
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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I used to work at the naval hospital in Bethesda and I saw all types of patients up and about, some on their own, others with medical assistance. They may've been accompanied by IV drips, oxygen, or a walking cast, but they were up.

Bettie Page Turner--thanks for letting me know about when to use heparin. I had a DVT back in '98 and while I didn't have tubes coming out of everywhere, I did have a heparin IV. Yeah that was fun. [Razz] (stupid Pill, and this is what I get for trying to control my cycle!)

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Leashes?! We don't need no stinking leashes!!

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Senior
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by Four Kitties:
Sounds an awful lot like a C-section recovery to me!

Are you sure, Peter? [Wink]

Four Kitties

There are certain similarities between a bowel resection and a C-section. The names, for one. The scars, for another.

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Ad astra per asparagus.

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Jacob's Child
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quote:
Originally posted by Bettie Page Turner:
A nurse's view of this glurge:

1. 9 days in the hospital? Wow! Either this person has wonderful insurance, they are almost dead (not likely, as they are complaining...a sure sign of a patient getting better [Wink] ), or the case managers haven't lit a fire under the doc's butt to get this patient out. The hospital's ALOS must be crappy!

This glurge doesn't say which country it comes from. In Canada, all this stuff is covered (in Ontario by OHIP). It might be from another country which has universal healthcare. I realize the Internet seems US-centric, but you can't assume this came from the US without any attributions/details.

A close friend of mine had a heart blockage, and was in hospital for over a month, all covered by OHIP. He's doing great now, though he hates having to go to the gym daily. He is now in much better shape than he's been for years, though. [Smile]

Judy

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Real Hair
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I want to know what the hell Queen Latifa ever did to her. Did that strike anyone else as a little racist?
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Shadowduck
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quote:
Originally posted by Real Hair:
I want to know what the hell Queen Latifa ever did to her. Did that strike anyone else as a little racist?

Odd, yes, but not necessarily racist. Maybe the author just dislikes Queen Latifa for some reason...

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But of course, I could be wrong.

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Mosherette
Deck the Malls


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Why does the name "Lady Di" make this person think of Queen Latifah anyway? They don't exactly resemble each other, do they?

Or am I missing something?

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Silence should never under any circumstances be construed as agreement. A lot of the time, it's simply a reflection that someone just said something so stupid that no response could possibly do it justice. - Ramblin' Dave

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KennRice
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
Originally posted by Real Hair:
I want to know what the hell Queen Latifa ever did to her. Did that strike anyone else as a little racist?

I took the remark as a comment on a perceived ego problem.

Ken

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jtelson
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
Why does the name "Lady Di" make this person think of Queen Latifah anyway? They don't exactly resemble each other, do they?

Or am I missing something?

Lady Di does sound like a name someone in the music biz would use.

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"Eternal pain and damnation await those who question the unconditional love of God."-Bill Hicks (1961-1994)

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MaoTheCat
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Yeah, I think perhaps it's a reference to the titles being used, Queen and Lady being varying forms of nobility. It's like having an honour for free [Big Grin] That's probably what the remark can be attributed to, not racism or even contempt for Queen Latifah, I believe it's directed at what is initially perceived as pretensiousness. The patient actually thinks that the woman's name (Whether given or assumed) IS "Lady Di" rather than a nickname.
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