Friday, 25 October 2013

Shoulders

And suddenly, without realising, without wanting, without warning, we have become a community. Complete strangers (except for Rosie*), nodding to each other at first, smiling, gentle waves. Then the odd few words, longer conversations, and eventually we are all on first name terms. All thrown together with one thing in common, our Mothers. And Hospital. That's two things.

Twice a day we meet on the stairs or on one of the long corridors and discuss how each of our loved ones is or isn't making progress. We have become a support group for each other, brothers and sisters in arms. Some of the others live quite a distance away and can only make one trip a day. I'm fortunate to live close to the hospital and can spend quite a bit of time there.

I have become the darling of the Acute Stroke Unit, the older ladies seem to love me, true, they have all suffered a stroke recently, (except Ma), still, despite the bald head, tattoos and hard-man strut (hahaha) the ladies all want a piece of me. I'm as yet not quite sure which piece. Nancy, from Co. Clare has taken quite the shine to me and waves frantically from her bed at the end of the ward as soon as she sees me.

Ma is still waiting to get her pacemaker. She picked up another infection in hospital which is causing the delay. The mood can be very low at times. But yesterday she had me in tears of laughter telling me of an incident earlier that morning. She had just come back from the X-Ray dept where they were checking her leg for possible causes of the infection. As she sat back on her bed a young doctor came to examine her foot. She said he seemed to be getting quite flustered and was saying stuff like "When did this lesion appear? No, this one here, this new strange lump on your foot?" Now, ma is quite blind and couldn't see what he was talking about and started to get upset. The doc hurried off and returned with a nurse and both of them again examined her foot. After a few minutes the nurse says "Sarah, have you been eating chocolates?" Yes, says the Ma, Maltesers. One of the chocolates had ended up in her slipper and had melted onto her foot!

(*Rosie's Ma is one of the other patients. I dated Rosie when we were about 14 or 15 yrs old and didn't think she'd remember me as I used to have quite the head of curls back then, but she did.)

17 comments:

  1. Ah yes, I've been part of that "Club", when Dad had Chemo treatments. We "support people" not only spoke to each other, we started speaking to each other's "patients", which was usually a parent. Biggest shock I ever got was when a patient's name was called, the Dad stayed still and his big strapping son stood up and walked down the hall. Looking back I realized how many times just seeing someone who smiled in understanding got me through the worst times. And of COURSE they're delighted to see you. If they ever find out you sing.....

    Now, I didn't mean to laugh at Ma, but it brought back a forgotten memory of the Aunt (Dad's old maid sister) I took care of who was in the nursing home. Seems an Aide came in at about 5 a.m. to check on Auntie and came running out of the room, yelling for a doctor. After it was all over, everyone got a good laugh but, seems Auntie was covered in glowing orange, green and blue spots! Turns out my Chocoholic Aunt (who use to give us M&M candies as a kid, thus hooking us too) had been given some Halloween M&Ms that glowed in the dark! Yep, she fell asleep while eating them, they spilled all over her and the rest was a history often repeated as legend at the Home. :)

    Hugs and love to Ma....extra large hug for YOU!

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    1. It's many the laugh I've had this week on that story, the lads in the pub think I'm making it up! :¬)

      xxx

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  2. I sometimes wonder how many people understand just how broad your shoulders are Mairtín. It's very easy of me (and half of Ireland come to that) to poke fun in your direction due to your easy going nature. Very few people outside of a close-knit circle are aware of the real you. For the record, you are a loyal husband, a fantastic father and a loving son. I'm proud to have you as my smaller, somewhat clumsier brother. You have the respect of the 'fellas' in Glasgow, you definitely have the respect of me. That goes without saying.

    Sadly, Jonjo, the landlord of the Calton, who has no respect, has paid me to find you in regard to a bar tab that remains unpaid. We'll get to that in due course. Tis the Friday. Pint so?

    Tell your ma I was asking for her, okay big man?

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    1. You flatter me Jimmy. I'm tall 'cos I stand on the shoulders of a giant. Thanks for being such a good teacher. :¬)

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    2. Hmmm... perhaps you should have paid more attention when it came to the lesson about the art of carrying a tray of drinks a few metres across an empty bar room floor then, eh?

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    3. You're never gonna let that one go are ya? Are ya???

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  3. Never mind that bar tab. I've got you covered. Anything for a pal. Good that you bumped into Rosie. Show her what she missed out on. I'll bet she wept into her pillow that night. Okay. Steady as she goes...

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    1. Sweet Jeebus my friend, do you KNOW how big that tab is??? :¬)

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  4. you are a star, bubba! give ya mama a big kiss from me! ;~) xoxoxoxo

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    1. A star? A minor planet maybe. :¬)

      xoxoxoxox

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  6. I bet the ladies on the ward are expecting one of your fine tunes!
    Sx

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  7. Och! The only tunes he has about him are the cherry menthol ones in the red packets.

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    1. Excuse my large friend Ms S. He wouldn't know music if it hit him in his good one.

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  8. Of course you're the darling of all the old ladies! I would expect nothing less of you, my friend. :-)

    I've been told by patients that they feel 100% better after they get their pacemaker, so hopefully that will be the case with your Ma. Give her a hug from me, tell her it's from that Canadian nurse that you know, and that it contains lots of healing just for her.

    And the hug you get back from her contains lots of love just for you. Part of that comes from her and part comes from me. You're an angel. Even if you don't know it. xoxoxoxoxo

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    1. Pon; Aw, thanks my friend! :¬)

      xxx

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