Tuesday, January 15, 2013

THE BIRTH OF A BEDSORE: PART ONE

How I adored Vivie! Our love affair began when I was still a hospitality aide, emptying the laundry bins for the GNAs, one of whom I would soon be.

One of my most important evening tasks, and one that was required by law, was offering an evening snack to the patients. I didn't get a lot of takers since most of the old folks had their supper and wanted to head straight for bed.

But I asked anyway: "Would you like some juice? Would you like some ice cream? How about a sandwich?"

Faith, who was an old hand at the hospitality aide business and who trained me, told me not to ask Vivie if she wanted a snack. "She never wants anything," Faith told me.

But disobedient soul that I am, I asked Vivie anyway. Faith was right. Vivie always shook her head and waved me away.

But with persistence I had a Vivie breakthrough. Each evening a woman and her young daughter, perhaps the daughter was four or five, would come in to put Vivie to bed.

Just before Halloween, the little girl was wearing her Halloween costume. She was dressed as a princess.

"Your Highness," I cried, as I entered Vivie's room, "I didn't realize you are a princess."

Then I curtsied.

The little girl giggled and Vivie giggled. After that, Vivie smiled when she saw me, though she continued to wave me away.

One night I got to Vivie's room with my snack cart just after the woman had gotten Vivie into bed, wearing a fresh snap-up-the-front smock and with a hairnet on her dark hair to keep her permed, dyed curls in place.

"Would you like a snack?" I inquired as usual.

"Why do you ask me?" Vivie spluttered. "You know I never want anything."

"I ask because I care," I said.

"Oh, oh," Vivie responded, making her usual spluttering noises as she searched for the right word. "Oh, I just love you."

I hugged her and kissed her cheek.

I knew I had a new friend.

27 comments:

  1. What a lovely story. Sometimes it takes a little persistence to reach a heart, but it's so worth it, as you have wonderfully shown.

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    1. I think persistence is one of my better attributes -- except when I persist in doing something and I should have stopped long ago.

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  2. Another interesting story, now I'm waiting for part II :)

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    1. Thanks, Alex. Is your life calming down at all? I think about you all the time, and I pray for you.

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  3. Such a heart warming story. Small things and perseverance can make such a difference.

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    1. I know it's a cliche, but little things mean a lot, especially when one lives a very confining life. Most of the residents rarely left the facility.

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  4. You ARE putting these in a book, aren't you?

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    1. Yes, Mama. These are my rough drafts for the book. It keeps me going. I won't include everything here and after a while I'll delete these posts so everyone will have a reason to buy the book. Right? My first choice to be my publisher -- Wayman. I think you should write a book. Write a memoir or just put together a bunch of funny stories. You would cheer up a lot of people. I'd like to know what your childhood was like. From whence sprang the heart of a comedienne?

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  5. Even if the answer is always no it is still nice to be asked

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    1. And you never know when the answer might change to yes.

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  6. I'm wearing a snap front smock and a hairnet. I'd like my chocolatemilk and graham crackers now pls.

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    1. I'm sorry but you have reached a wrong number. We are no longer in business.

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  7. It's the little touches of humanity like these that are most important in the world. Beautiful.

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  8. Aww, that's sweet. You can charm your way to anyone's heart!

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    1. No. Later on you'll hear about some patients who tried to beat me up.

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  9. For that story...I think I love you too! You should never give up trying :)

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    1. Thank you, Lyndylou. I don't like to be a quitter.

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    1. I agree. Let's all start nagging her to write a book. Maybe it could be called "The Birth of a Fishducky: To Lunacy and Back."

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  11. Replies
    1. Ah, but never big enough. We always have room to grow.

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  12. Hi Janie .. waiting for part 3 now - a sad tale ... and one I can relate to ... thankfully my mother never had sores ...

    I'm pleased Vivie reacted happily to you after a while ... cheers Hilary

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