Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Patience of Being a Patient

Being a "patient" has many challenges, mostly related to patience, with self, for others, and sometimes for the self. it is an especially challenging experience for everyone directly involved in the "recovery process" both for those of able body and not so able. Sounds like we are cleaning up after a "natural" disaster, and in many ways the very first weeks of recuperation requiring a lot of cleanup, especially, for those mobile helpers that have to bear so much burden. Without Larry's indefatigable help, albeit, occasionally grumpy, I would not be in as good of shape and out of a bad slump.

It is hard to realize, unless you have the experience of being laid up, how much we take for granted that we do for ourselves each and every day, from the simplest of reaching for a glass of water, throwing something into the garbage can, being able to walk into your bedroom to grab a sweater when you are chilled. I bet that we perform those mindless acts without thought over one thousand times a day. You only realize how much you do those things we you are "laid up" and having to rely quite heavily on someone else to essentially throw out your dirty tissues, and be your arms, legs, etc.

This is a really big challenge to negotiate between partners and loved ones, between laid up one and non-laid up ones. Patients (at least me) go through this difficult convoluted process of deciding what is too embarrassing to ask for. And, at the same time, they are stuck in bed screaming inside wanting to just be able to get up and pick up something. There is this terrible balance between being patient for things, able to request something, and not over requesting."Honey, can you get me a glass of water?... Oh, and I need a straw... Can, I have some crackers with that?.. Oh, can you reach for me that blanket?...I need more ice in the ice machine, the foot pumps stopped working..." It goes on and on, then there is the gratuitous stuff, like staplers, and highlighters, and magazines.

No comments:

Twitter Updates