Why Nurses Should Rule The World, Part 13

, , , , , | Healthy | September 29, 2019

My mother has Alzheimer’s and lives in a care facility. Not long ago, she was taken ill and they sent her to the local emergency room for some tests as a safety precaution because she can’t communicate and so it was unclear exactly what was wrong with her.

Mum’s husband and a carer went with her from the home and I joined them in the hospital. Understandably, my poor mother, who had no idea what was going on — even though we tried our best to explain — was confused, upset, and maybe even a little frightened.

The nurse taking care of Mum wasn’t unkind as such, but she was brisk and abrupt, and she made little to no effort to try and reassure Mum or interact with her. Again, understandably, Mum became ever more flustered and upset despite our best efforts to keep her calm and reassure her ourselves.

Then, the shift changed, and a new nurse was assigned to take care of Mum. She interacted with Mum; she spoke to her, touched her, calmed her, and reassured her far more than Mum’s husband, the carer, or I had managed to achieve. She even had Mum cooperating.

When Mum was finally released, I went and thanked that nurse for helping a frightened and confused woman feel calm and safe. The nurse was totally shocked that I thanked her. Later, my sister, who’s also a nurse, told me that while people are quick to complain, they rarely say thank you. Nurses do a very hard job, working with people who are ill, frightened, confused, and many other things besides. They’re not perfect, but on the whole, most of them do an amazing job. Please don’t forget to say thank you.

Related:
Why Nurses Should Rule The World, Part 12
Why Nurses Should Rule The World, Part 11
Why Nurses Should Rule The World, Part 10

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Resting Gift Face

, , , , , | Hopeless | September 27, 2019

(I am a fairly anxious teenager, working the till at a charity shop as a volunteer. The charity in question is a very big, well-known one. A man enters the shop and comes straight towards the counter. He’s got a very stern expression, and I’m concerned he’s here to make a complaint while my manager has stepped out.)

Customer: *sharply* “What do you do?”

Me: “Uh, the charity or me personally?”

Customer: “The charity.”

(I’m a little taken aback by his abruptness, and not sure how best to explain the work we do, because it has quite a broad scope, but I do my best:)

Me: “Well, we work with impoverished communities overseas to provide aid, like building wells and schools and, um, also medical care and education. We cover quite a lot of areas, really, but the aim is, I suppose, to help those communities become able to help themselves…”

(I go on in this vein for a while; I’m aware that I’m rambling, but the guy keeps frowning at me expectantly, so I keep talking. Eventually, I run out of ways to explain what we do.)

Me: “Did you have any other questions, sir?”

(Without another word, he pulls out a chequebook and writes a £50 cheque!)

Customer: “What name do I make this out to? Just [Charity]?”

Me: “Yes, sir! Thank you so much!”

(I guess he just had an angry face; he very patiently filled out a form so we could claim back gift aid for his donation, and then he walked out of the shop without another word. Despite his abrupt behaviour, he ended up making my day!)

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“Building” Great Impressions

, , , , , | Hopeless | September 25, 2019

Years ago, when I was working in a Victorian-era house that had been converted into a museum, I would frequently be the only staff member present. As it was in a fairly isolated location, there would be days I was the only person for miles.

On one such slow day at the beginning of the season, I was going through cleaning tasks when a whole group of stereotypical biker guys pulled in. Our grounds have a restroom and are open to the public, so they spent some time stretching their legs. I kept an eye on them, but since people often pulled in to explore the grounds without ever entering the house, I didn’t think too much about it.

Then, two of them came in, big, bearded guys in all their Harley Davidson leather. Being in the hospitality industry, I always kept a pleasant face on, but I’m a pretty small female and couldn’t help feeling a little nervous. Biker guys had never come inside before.

They asked some questions about the house, which I answered, and then I went ahead and told them about the tour options. The lead guy smiled and said, “Nah, we’re not into that. But we pull in here every year, so we wanted to give something toward your building fund. Do you have anything like that?”

I gave him a big smile back and said that as a matter of fact, we did take donations. They went outside and collected cash from the rest of their group: when I counted it up on my way to the donation box, it was over $40.

So many tourists would whine about having to pay to enter the museum at all, and yet here were these biker guys paying more than admission just because they liked to visit the grounds on their yearly trip. Biker guys are sweet teddy bears: confirmed!

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It’s Warm Inside, There’s All Kinds Of Lovely Atmosphere

, , , , , , | Hopeless | September 23, 2019

(My daughters and I are fans of the show “Red Dwarf” and meeting the cast would be amazing, but times in the 90s are tough for us so conventions are beyond us. One of the actors from the show, Craig Charles, is doing a reading from one of his books in a major book store in our city, so I have the idea of taking the daughter that likes it the most.)

Me: “Hi, Mr. Charles! Could my bairn have your autograph, please?”

(Craig, noticing my daughter is around five years old, asks if she knows who he is.)

Daughter: *quite clearly* “Yeah! Smeghead!”

Craig: “That’s ‘Mister Smeghead, sir’!”

(He signed her book, “Craig Charles, SMEGHEAD!”)

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We’re Always Mobile Enough To Make Someone’s Day Better

, , , , , , | Right Working | September 20, 2019

(I am working a late shift at the grocery store and I have not been having a great day. I am tired, and hungry from not eating lunch, but I am still putting my best foot forward. I see an older gentleman roll up in one of our mobility scooters.)

Me: “Sir, are you ready to check out?”

Customer: “Why, yes!”

Me: *mustering what energy I can* “Well, come on down, sir! Don’t be shy! I’ll get you taken care of on the express lane!”

Customer: “All righty!”

Me: “Would you mind if I unload your basket for you, sir?”

Customer: “I’d love that! I can’t do it myself.”

(I smile as I unload his cart.)

Customer: “I can tell you’ve had a busy day, but I want you to know that I grew up with the founder of [Grocery Chain], and he would be very proud to see one of his employees treat someone so well. I know he’s not around anymore, but in his stead, I’ll say, ‘I’m proud of you.’”

Me: “That means a lot, sir.”

(I shut down my lane and followed him out to his car, loaded his groceries, and wished him well. He turned my day around!)

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