I remeber back to nursing school
. I was assigned to a sweet older man who was in the hospital for one particular illness. His wife passed away while he was in the hospital, and he had heart attack when he heard the news. He was moved to the telemetry floor where I was assigned to him. An EEG was scheduled for him that day, and I was able to go with him and observe. The tech, meaning well, asked him how he was holding up. He answered "Oh you know, we don't live forever. I'll go on." and he began to tear up (luckily I had a little pack of tissues in my pocket). I was the only one able to see these tears as the techs were behind him. Later that day, my instructor gave me the OK to sit and watch TV with him while I charted my care plan so as to keep him company. He looked over at me during a commercial and asked "What do I do now?" I replied "What do you mean? I don't believe you have any appointments scheduled until about 4pm..."
"No..." he said, "I don't want to go back home. My wife isn't there. My kids live far away. What do I do?" Not knowing how far I could discuss the situation, being a student, I told him what assisted living facilities were all about and that I would make sure his case manager knew that he'd like to discuss his options.
Every chance I got, I walked past the case manager's desk. Never did I see her. I ended up leaving a note on her desk and asking my instructor to keep an eye out for her after telling her about my conversation with the patient. My instuctor said she would certainly relay the message if I didn't get the chance. I only hope it didn't slip through the cracks.
I've since forgotten this gentleman's name, but I will NEVER forget his face and those tears have been forever burned in my memory. I say a little prayer to myself when I think of him. It was such an honor to be near him during such a pivotal time in his life.
Kudos to you, and just know that you aren't the only one who feels like this! ((Hugs))