Not Humane???

I think I succeeded in pissing off almost the entire local medical community today. Why? I was simply trying to get one of my patient’s needs met – – that’s all. I’m a bit unforgiving when it comes to doctor’s who don’t seem to listen. I had a patient for the past month. She died today. She died miserably, in pain and suffering – – and she really didn’t need to. We did everything we could – – that is to say, everything within the confines of our limitations. She was an elderly lady with breast cancer that had metastized […]

Painfully Honest

I’m on call this weekend. ALL weekend long, as a matter of fact. Generally, the RN Case Managers are on call about 5 times per month. Not a bad deal, really. However, with this move coming up – I needed the extra cash in my pocket to pay for all the extra expenses that come along with moving. Since we get paid $300.00 per day for being on call – I picked up extra days this month. LOTS of extra days. We get paid the money over and above our usual salary, and we get paid $300 whether we actually […]

Assisted Suicide

Mike killed himself over the weekend. 54 years old – an AML (Acute Myelogenous Leukemia) patient of mine. Well, he wasn’t a patient of mine for very long – – just 3 days. He was quite a cranky guy – with an opinion on absolutely everything. He was crusty and grumpy – but loveable. One of the very first things he ever said to me was, “I hope you aren’t going to be bringing any social worker into my house. I don’t want no fucking social workers here – they are useless.” I never did bring that social worker in. […]

Ego Stroking

Wednesday. Middle of the week. Almost done. Hey if it brings me one more day closer to my vacation in Lake Tahoe – I’m all for it! That woman from the other Hospice agency is calling me again. She is very persistent. I had an interview scheduled with her just after the New Year – which I cancelled after giving it much thought. I called her and told her I wasn’t interested in making a change in my life right now and didn’t want to waste her time with the interview, knowing that I wasn’t really interested in moving from […]

Morality Moment

Today, I had another one of those mortality moments. These moments seem to happen quite often in this job of mine – I suppose I should just get used to it. Not that I don’t accept and have come to grips with my own mortality – because I have. It’s not so much my death I worry about – – what I worry about is the effect it will have on my children. I sat with M. today for about 2 hours at her bedside as she completed her long battle with cancer. It wasn’t an easy road for her, […]

Purple Mums

It was a blessing, really. Isn’t that what is always said? A blessing to be released from pain, suffering, uncertainty and fear? In my short time of knowing C. ~ I feel confident in the knowledge that I helped her with everything I could to make her comfortable and pain-free. Probably one of the most frustrating things about situations like this is not the physical pain and symptoms. But it’s the emotional and spiritual pain and demons that I’m unable to treat and make go away. I like to think – from what I could see, that C. had the […]

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