Some days are harder than others.

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So, having got to work – I was instructed by my matron that I had to attend, and the delightful £35 taxi I took got me there only and hour and a bit late – I met a very nice Physiotherapist who offered to give me a lift home; I thought she was only offering a lift to a_nearby_town, but she actually brought me home; wouldn’t stay for tea, wouldn’t take money for petrol. *so nice*.

And in most regards, actually my day wasn’t too bad. I didn’t work quite so hard as I might, mostly because I was thinking about the job offer – which turned into a full time 9 month contract in the ED. So I’m off there – I did have some nerves about breaking it to my Matron that I was leaving, she looked a bit stressed but also said ‘well, you did say you wanted to go there’ and then said ‘wouldn’t you like to work in A&E here’ but it transpired there are no jobs there. She was pleased that I want to stay on the staff bank there though.

Anyhow. The day was hard because we have this particular patient; he’s been with us a while and if you describe him to anyone you’d be imagining the worst patient you could. Deaf, blind (both happening late in life so he’s not really got coping skills for either issue), demenia, aggressive, incontinent, swears at you… But y’know what, he’s everyone’s favourite. He is just such a character, and for all his “It’s bloody cold in here! Why don’t you close the fucking window…”‘s and strings of loud burps, he’s actually kinda sweet.

And we do our best to look after him.

Yesterday I took him down for an ultrasound scan; he’d previously swung for the assistant down there – but with someone he knows there to reassure him and *shout* what’s going on very loudly (normally it’s fairly patronising to shout at someone who’s deaf, but for him it actually works pretty well) – anyhow, we got through it with him mostly complaining about the gel being cold and nothing much else to upset the staff there… But what the scan revealed wasn’t good; and you could see it in the ward when I came back and told some of the other nurses looking after him. The doctors, the nurses, everyone’s reaction was one of real sadness. The nature of looking after older people is, I suppose, that a lot of them will die; and a lot of them are at that stage where lots of things start to go wrong in their bodies.

But somehow, it often seems to be the ones we’ve had for a long time (which is, to be fair, probably because they’ve got something wrong with them, but it takes a while to find out what, and that’s why they never quite make it home) and are thus quite attached to, that seem to have the really nasty illnesses…

So that, that sucked.


Kate is lord and mistress of all she surveys at