Friday 26 October 2018

Getting Better

When you have been in hospital for a month you learn a lot about the other patients and about the NHS staff. Here are some examples. The nurse who is always smiling, always ready with a joke and comforting words. When I comment on this I learn that her husband died when he returned to their African home to get work and rebuild a future for his wife and two sons to return to. The low paid Serco worker who gives me an early morning cup of tea, whose half-day is seven and a half hours and full day is eleven and a half. The nurse who wakes me every morning to do the daily ECG. She is always singing and when I ask her why she is so cheerful answers, 'what choice do we have?' The doctor who is part of the Consultant morning visit team who sees I am upset by the news I am given and who returns to my bedside after they have moved on to offer me reassurance. The patient who, uninvited, sits beside me to tell me about his army days in Malaya. Can't stand his Empire memories, but when he turns to his love of gardening he becomes human again. Mohammed who keeps me awake all night with his involuntary dream-screams. The next morning he apologises and we go together to the nurses desk to ask for a solution to help both of us. He is moved to his own room. A dear man and I hope he recovers because he has been too ill. As for me I'm now getting better

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