Friday, September 5, 2008

Serious and slightly depressing, or, Life in general

So, I have no idea how to handle a certain situation I have been facing weekly, if not daily. This morning's ride in the elevator up to my hospital floor illustrates perfectly, I believe.

Entering the elevator with only a few other people, I smile at the 50-60 yr old woman, holding two cups of coffee. Saying hello, I ask, "How are you?"

Turns out that trivialities like that, when wearing a white coat, are not taken as such. The woman replied, "Well, they're taking my grand-daughter off of everything today, and they're just going to let her go."

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What do you do? I mean, what in the world is there to do?


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I said, "Oh, I'm so sorry." and I was.

I felt bad for her and her family.

I also felt bad that I'd asked the question, and I also felt bad that I was wearing the white coat.

Why the animosity towards the white coat? Not only because it is the fomite from hell, but because it made her want to share about the little baby, who was about to die.

And "they" were the ones doing it.

And "they" wear white coats too.

Just like me.

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On a related note, is there a good way to walk out of a dieing person's room and say, "Have a good day"?




I realize this is disjointed. I should rework this instead of posting it immediately. But I'd rather not dwell on this anymore than I already have. I'll attempt humor again in the next post.

4 comments:

Barb @ getupandplay said...

That sucks, dude.

Maybe a different valediction? Thank you? Talk with you soon? Let us know if you need anything?

merilee said...

Oh Bryce,
You know, sometimes someone just needs to say something out loud, and the white coat also symbolizes a safe person to say it to. A little like a clerical collar. They assume you deal with it a lot, that you have an understanding of thier pain without dwelling on it.
You said the perfect thing. I'm sorry is just right.
You are loved!

Ann-Marie said...

I think Merilee is right. You were safe to talk to, and sincere in your question. I remember when my friend, Zach, was at the end of his life...his mom and I had a conversation about how we need to come up with different salutations. We so automatically greet people with "how are you?", when really-it's not always appropriate.

I'm grateful for people like you and Dad and Geo who want to make peoples lives better. What you are doing makes a difference. Love you.

peetie said...

So, my writing ability has failed. Or you have chosen to ignore part of what I was trying to say, probably because you're my sisters. And because I suck at writing. And I didn't edit this very well.

One of the major emotions was that I was bugged me she had even told me about the grandbaby. I didn't want to know about the child's fate. I wanted t pretend they didn't exist. And I realized that. And that made me feel worse.