I saw Gerri today. The visit was scheduled, so I went even though she is in the hospital. As Gina needed to do some things, I drove her to her appointments and Mokuh and I went for a quick lunch. (Gerri emphatically said today that 'Bart' is a manly abbreviation in North America for Bartholomew, so that's what Mokuh should be called. Really? Manly? I couldn't get rid of Bart Simpson's image firmly stuck in my mind.)
Gina told me about the ambulance pickups of the last two days. On Sunday morning an ambulance crew of six arrived, five looked after Gerri, and one, she said, was exclusively caring for her. She was so pleased and astonished.
If you've ever cared for a person who is that ill, you'll know how very draining that is, and how it can seriously jeopardize the health of the care taker. So when she told me that one Paramedic looked at her and made sure that she was OK, it reminded me that our much maligned health care system ultimately consists of the people that work in it, and so far the ones Gerri and Gina have encountered are the very, very best!
Gerri has a private room. Close to the nurses' station. Here she sat, in front of a little table that looks like a little desk, a steam mask over her mouth and nose, reading something. She has risen again, and her indomitable spirit has once again taken charge. She had a ten-star night, she said. The steam was for her lungs, as she has a nasty lung infection. She'll be in the hospital for this week. When asked for details of her condition, she said she didn't listen much to the doctor's explanation, it doesn't matter, she gives herself up to the doctor's and nurses' care, and, she pointed out, she had three of her own nurses! The goal is to get her treatment plan (meds, etc) organized in such a way that she can go home and continue to be stable.
Gerri had no money with her for the TV lady. I had my notebook with me and could provide her with her own credit card information, just like a PA should. This whole scenario reminded me of something... Let's see: Gerri is attended hand and foot, has her own nurses, holds court behind her little desk, and carries no money... Wait, yes, so like The Queen!