So here's a funny story I remembered today when something I said did not communicate well to my patient. (not uncommon)
It is my VERY FIRST day in the hospital as a nursing student. First day EVER with a patient. White scrubs, hair pulled back in the poofy one clip at the top of head, the appropriate amount of makeup, pretending that the stethoscope slung around my neck doesn't feel like a ball and chain.
This VERY FIRST patient of mine had the misfortune of having her hand caught in a machine at the meat grinding plant where she worked. (Did I mention this might give some of you the heebies? I always forget about that. Sorry.)
This might give some of you the heebies.
So, she got her hand severed just at the base of the fingers and they had re-enastemosed the fingers (put them back on. guess I'll never forget that word.) and were actually using leeches to get the old blood out. (not the funny part of the story, but it's always been interesting to me that my VERY FIRST patient received leech therapy. No. I'm not that old.)
So this woman can't do much with her hand, and looking back now, though I wouldn't have seen it then, she was not really too interested in trying to do much at all. (she must have asked 3 times for a bed bath. I mean, who really wants a bed bath? Ug!)
So (and I'm really digressing tonight, arent' I?) I set her breakfast tray on her bedside table, adjust the height and slide it in front of her with a warm smile- opening the shades to let a little sunshine in to the murky morning dimness of the room. I turn to walk out, and she calls out-
"Can you butter my biscuit for me?"
"Oh! Of course!" I reply blithely. "I'm so sorry!"
As I am splitting this Quality Brand Biscuit to prepare it for the butter, it starts to crumble. I make do as best I can, spread some Quality Brand Margarine over the pieces, put the knife down, and say to her:
"I hope you can enjoy the shattered remains of your biscuit."
Who on earth (I know you are asking) says "shattered remains of a biscuit???"
And to a woman who has had a bad encounter with a meat grinder???
Well, my dears, apparently me.