The only good thing about this step in going home was that I placed close to the bathroom. I know in most cases this is not the prime real estate one desires – but in hospital when you can barely move it becomes an asset. Maybe there were two good things the other two ladies in the room were very pleasant.
I realized that I was not in Kansas anymore, when I was told that the catheter would be removed and I would be learning to transfer from bed to wheel chair to bathroom. After the “removal” a bed pan was slid under me and I was told it would remain there until I went. If I didn’t go the alternative did not sound very pleasant. Luckily for me I was able to will all functions quite quickly – unlike my unfortunate roommate who would be left on the bed pan for up to 1 hour at a time. My heart went out to her – I had my sister (bless her…) –who saved me from that.
What I want to share with others;
If you can’t be there during meal time, make sure there is someone there – especially if your loved one can’t feed themselves. Pop in at different times – this way your pattern is not learned. When your loved one says something’s not right have it checked out. I recall how uncomfortable my neck collar felt – I told my sister I didn’t think it was on right, she probably thought I just wanted it off – it wasn’t my favourite accessory! When a doctor came in I had him check it and sure enough it had been put on wrong.
If you or your loved-one, want to have someone stay with throughout the night – don’t ask the nurses, they tell you about visiting hours. Speak with a hospital supervisor or doctor. Provided you are not chatting during lights out or keep the light on disturbing other patients in the room – your request should be authorized.
Send your loved one flowers or something they enjoy, once they are in a Ward unit! Especially if they have come from CCU or ICU, where nothing is permitted due to germs. I was extremely cheered up when I started to receive flowers or cards- more than visits. In a ward anyone can show up to visit your loved one - my sister was great at setting up a visiting schedule - but people still showed up unannounced - which either tired me, cut into a scheduled visit that was cheering me up or completely frustrated me because - I couldn't express I didn't want a particular person to visit. Remember when you can't get out of bed you are at the mercy of others.
Next Monday is the final step before I went home…