Yes, it was...it was a cold, crappy rainy day here in lovely Ohio - it is days like today that drove all the west coast girls back to the nest. I wished to be one of you today!!! These are the days I usually HATE taking Chel out - dealing with 70 lbs of wet dog is no fun. However, unbeknown st to me, there is a maze of underground tunnels that connect several of the hospital buildings. My volunteer coordinator shared that with us today, saving me from having to walk in 40 degree rainy weather. I appreciated that greatly because I did not have to bundle up like the nook of the north and deal with wet dog.
Tonight, she was absolutely awesome. It started off well when we did not have to walk in the rain and just got better from there. Apparently, it was just not a good day at Dodd. There were several new admissions and one patient had just gotten some bad news (I never did find out what). Upon my arrival, we found all Chelsie's favorite nurses to be there - Clara, Angie, Kori and Gabby, just to name a few. Angie said I needed to go to 4147, they were pretty upset in there (the room with the bad news) and went to see if they wanted us to come in. Unfortunately, the wife was allergic to dogs, so we did not go in there. Tonight, she was very therapeutic for the nursing staff.
We finally made our way down to the end of the hall, and came across a very nice man who had been there for 5 hrs. He loved dogs, and had 2 great Pyrenees. We talked for probably 15 minutes - he had a stroke 17 mos ago, they did not know why and he had some mobility issues with his legs. Apparently he had passed out in the shower and could not walk when he came to. He had lost his wife three years ago to breast cancer, however, despite all of this, he had a great attitude and was a pleasure to talk to. He is not sure how long he is going to be there, so we will definitely look to visit him again if he is.
One very nice thing that happened tonight is that one patient who had been in isolation for our last few visits was finally in the clear!!! He had looked at Chelsie from his bed, and was very sad he could not pet her. After seeing her twice and just not being able to wait to get his hands on her, he could finally touch her tonight. When I found out he was out of iso, his was the first room I stopped at. He was eating dinner, so I told him we would come back. When we did, he was just thrilled and loved on her for about 15 minutes. A bunch of nurses walked by and saw Chel giving him kisses, and just smiled - they knew how much he wanted to see her.
One other patient we have seen in the past few weeks I don't think I have talked about was a blind lady. As many of you know, I have a very close friend who is visually impaired, and I affectionately refer to her as "The Blind Lady". We have seen this lady twice now - tonight was the last time we will see her, she is going home on Thursday, which is always good news. At one point, she used a dog, but has not in several years. She was very happy to see Chel, and loved on her also - all this love for the dog, what about the mama???? We talked at length tonight about blindness in general. I told her Sharon and I always joke about writing a book - "What the Blind Wished the Sighted Knew About Blindness". I told her some of the dumb things I have said to Sharon, and she laughed. For example:
Computer Use - when watching Sharon try to navigate Microsoft Word using shift+ keys
Nicole - why don't you use the mouse to do that?
Sharon - because I can't see the pointer. (duh)
Sock sorter - as a person who once had sight, sometimes she describes things I am not sure of.
Sharon - I need a sock sorter.
Nicole - Where do you buy one of those?
Sharon - It's you.
Nicole - Oh.
These are some of the funnier exchanges we have had.
It was also a rough night for a patient we have seen the last few nights. She is a lady who has had a rough like - has had portions of both legs amputated and has had a stroke. She shares a room with the lady who has the other Chelsie. She was asleep tonight when we got there, but the other Chelsie's mom told me she had not had a good day, they found a blood clot in her neck. The other Chelsie is coming to visit tomorrow, and apparently this kind lady shares her Chelsie with her roomie. She said the other lady was very down tonight. She sort of woke up but was out of it, so we will see her next week.
We were definitely exhausted tonight when we left. Mom had to go back to work today, and she is very tired from that experience. My day started off with a conference call where some signals were crossed and I looked like a yak, which was an outstanding welcome back present. Thankfully, the day got better, but after that and then going to Dodd, I am exhausted. It will be an early night to bed in this household. Hopefully, Chelsie will be a willing cuddle participant.
We hope this finds everyone well. Take care and until next week.....
Nicole and The Chelsie Belle