I have always prided myself on my patience.
As my dear Mum used to quote whenever my Little Sister or I grew fractious: "Patience is a virtue, Possess it if you can, Seldom
found in women / Never found in man." A somewhat sexist rhyme, that, as the Men in my Life would doubtless bitterly complain.
Patience is never more needed than in hospital which is where I found myself today.
I am currently hooked up to the second of two blood transfusions in a brand new suite called the Acute Ambulatory Area which is for people like me who like, or are able, to amble about while undergoing their treatment. Because the suite is so new, there have
been lots of dignitaries visiting to be shown around. None of them actually come to talk to us patients but perhaps they are afraid what we might say. Not that they need to fear because I am having as lovely a time as it is possible to have in the circumstances.
The staff, however, say that though they like their new home in most respects, it's a bit like moving house in that you keep forgetting where things are and fearing that they are still in packing cases somewhere.
Ah, yes, the staff. They are unfailingly wonderful, even if it has taken me the best part of the day to work out who is who. It's the uniforms that confuse me. There are students and nurses and sisters, not to mention the kind person who comes round
every so often with extremely welcome cups of coffee and the person with the mop and duster who attacks every surface with the same kind of zeal which I apply to my kitchen surfaces, now that I have cleared them. In the X Ray department which I visited this
morning (in the interests of completeness) there were three more uniforms to be seen and analysed, involving smart white jackets with rather fancy epaulettes. I wonder whether they all had a choice of the uniform for their department? Was there a strict budget?
Did some get a job lot from Uniforms R Us while others went bespoke?
The patients here in ACA come and go throughout the day as they are allocated beds in the main wards or sent home. Moreover, each and every
one appears to have a different doctor (or two) which means there are a great many doctors wafting about the place. They are all in civvies, so it isn't immediately obvious whether they are patients, patients' family members or medical staff. I assume, when
they sit themselves down at one of the two computer screens in the suite, that they are medical staff. Or else very nosey patients.
Nosiness. It's a problem in the ACA. As regular readers know, I am an avid
eavesdropper, mostly in support of good blog material for your delectation and delight. I am quite sure I have occasionally made your day by recounting particularly riveting conversations on the Pulse bus - or so I like to think though you may, of course,
beg to differ. Here in hospital where the screens shield you from sight but not from sound, one feels honour bound to zone out from intimate conversations about health matters going on around. If only because you hope nobody will be listening in on your own
I didn't expect to be here. I hoped I would be spending this morning at an important meeting and this afternoon on the beach with Young Faris and his parents. But I have been very well looked
after and it hasn't been at all boring, not for one like me who loves watching what's going on (even if I must close my ears on occasions.) Mr B came in with me first thing, to provide much needed moral support while the Middle of the Darling Daughters turned
up in the mid afternoon to treat me to coffee and Jaffa cakes and conversation. She says it's quite good to sit and relax in the ambulatory area with me rather than trying to stop Faris chasing after the sea-gulls on the beach.
A kind gent pushing a trolley has just turned up offering leek and potato soup - one of my favourites. Southern Fried Chicken is on its way. Mr B will Wish He Was Here. In a little more than an hour I should be able to amble off to reception and await
arrival of my Chariot with the Middle of the Darling Daughters at the wheel.
Welcoming as the Acute Ambulatory Area undoubtedly is, it will be SO good to be home.