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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Errant Thoughts from an ICU Waiting Room

Our family has spent an unusual amount of time in the ICU waiting room/s of St. Joseph's Hospital the last three months. My grandpa is having lots of different medical issues so we try to make sure someone is here most of the time so he doesn't feel lonely. Here are some random thoughts I've had over the last few visits.

-always bring snacks. bring something salty, sweet, crunchy, healthy etc...bring enough to share (i packed cottage cheese, string cheese, veggie straws, cucumber, carrots and almonds on monday.) there is a cafeteria downstairs but it closes kind of early and can get expensive

- don't bother bringing your cell phone, no service, EVER. unless you have verizon.

-speaking of cell phones, please be kind and courteous and take your cell conversations outside if you happen to be one of the lucky ones who has verizon. cell phone etiquette classes Tues. at 7pm

-wear deodorant- please

-bring books/quiet games/activities etc. to occupy your time. they do provide 1000 piece puzzles but after 8 hours of working on them, you realize about 8 key pieces are missing.

-don't use that pillow sitting next to you, no telling who used it first...

-wear socks.

-it looks like this hospital's ICU staff keeps the Croc's company in business

-wear layers. one minute it could be cold, the next boiling.

-try playing medical term bingo- one unit of blood, code blue, 20 cc's of saline etc...

-bring a tooth brush. for some reason you get an urge to brush your teeth while sitting around waiting.

-there are these signs that say ask me if i gel between patients. i REALLY want to work up the nerve to ask someone if they do, in fact, gel between patients

-the cafeteria has the best ice. always get an extra cup and just fill it up with ice.

-once you find the "hidden" waiting room inside the actual ICU don't tell the 30 people waiting in the other room it's here. hahaha i'm a jerk.

-don't walk in to the waiting room and change things. ex: lights. if they are off when you walk in the room, chances are whoever was in there first wants them off

-probably shouldn't listen to our conversations and you really shouldn't offer your opinion. thanks.

-get here early, best seats go first

-that's a coffee maker, not a hot chocolate maker. FYI

-knock on bathroom door BEFORE turning the nob

-if you burst into tears (which is to be expected) chances are we will look for one quick second, then get quiet for a few minutes.

-don't look into other people's rooms as you pass, you never know what you might see and you will probably regret what you see

-the lamps are nailed to the tables

-probably should keep perfume/cologne to a minimum

-talking to yourself will insure you get the whole couch to yourself

-and last but not least, i might go buy some scrubs and walk around with a clipboard just for fun, who knows maybe i'll become the next doogie howser ;).

let me end by saying, i hope you never have to be in the ICU for any length of time but if you do, some of these suggestions might come in handy.

stay tuned, next week:
Costco Parking Lot Etiquette

kind of kidding....



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