Monday, June 25, 2012

Burned Out Nurse?

The hospice social worker and nurse came out to talk to us.

The social worker was great and described their services very clearly. But the nurse sort of freaked me out.

She was loud and brusque and very businesslike. When I looked into her eyes I didn't get any feeling of warmth or friendliness or emotional connection at all.

I was in a huge dilemma. My nurse friends had all led me to expect a warm caring person with whom I would establish a relationship and come to lean on in this difficult time.

So I am sitting there wondering how the heck to handle this. Rules of politeness say I cannot say, "I don't like you," but choosing my hospice nurse is too important to mess up.

I really feel like I no longer have to do things I do not want to do, deal with people I do not want to deal with... because I have limited time left.

So I apologized but made it clear that I felt no rapport with her and did not expect that to change. I said it was an intangible thing, nothing she said or did in particular.

The social worker said she could send another nurse. Then they left, and Lou stayed outside for a couple minutes talking to them. I wondered if he was having to apologize for my behavior...

But when he came back in, his first words were to say that he completely agreed with me and that I was really brave to express that.

We decided that if the next nurse is also unfriendly, we will call Duke Hospice instead.

The next nurse comes today at 2:00pm.

(My parents suggested that maybe this nurse is just burned out.)

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone


Carol Quast said...

I am so proud of you for doing that! You deserve only the most wonderful, caring people around you. Love, Carol

Anonymous said...

Good for you...the best care ever is all you should get and expect!!

Hooray for Lou too! A strong advocate is very helpful while you
are adjusting to life on lifes terms.

Love you,
Kirkland Kathy :~)

Anonymous said...

Excellent way to begin your relationship with these important folks coming into your life. They can do their best for you when you are open. After all, this is about what you need rather than a judgment of the nurse. Thanks for telling us about your experience. We all need to learn these kinds of coping skills.

Love, Jeannie

Anonymous said...

Hugs Karen, I am SO proud of you for standing up for your rights! It is so important to have a nurse that will be as important as any good friend in your lifetime. You have the right to expect excellence......and the right to demand it.
You go girl! My hero!
Love to you and Lou. Aunt Peggy

Jenn said...

Karen, I am so proud of you for this decision--you were absolutely, positively justified in speaking up. Our experience with hospice was amazing, and yours should be nothing less.

Anonymous said...

You go Karen. And a high five for Lou! This is so very important. You continue to teach us all.....

Anonymous said...

Good girl Karen and to Lou too...only positive energy to surround you...Love, Mrs. S. xxoo