Obese lady

  1. I just have to share this...

    I had a severe morbidly obese lady a few days ago. When I started the shift she was listless and had flat affect, pretty much no response to me. She had been a walkie/talkie before entering for surgery

    I spent the day turning her, talking to her, making her bend her knees, move her arms while helping me move her (I had been told she was pretty much dead-weight, no assistance whatsoever, so encouraging her to get more active). I talked to her, teased her, hugged her (I am not usually a touchy-feely person; having my personal body space invaded really disturbs me usually). She became tearful around midday, apologizing for being such a bother, etc. I told her nothing doing, she was doing the best she could and moving even a little would help her in getting stronger. Toward afternoon, she was smiling for me and even laughed once.

    Her laughter brightened my day. And it almost made me cry. Sometimes those patients that seem not to give a darn are the ones in the most need of encouragement, even when they become snarly </3
    Last edit by Joe V on Feb 29, '12 : Reason: spacing
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  2. 27 Comments

  3. by   Esme12
    Thank you for taking the time to find out why she was withdrawn and difficult. Patients know how the staff feel and they hear much more than you think about that fat, lazy,obese, patient who refuses to help herself and if they ever got like that themselves they'd kill themselves, sew their mouths shut, never eat again and how disgusting it is.....

    Thanks again for seeing through the patient and saw the human being ashamed, alone, and in pain...Well done.
  4. by   JustBeachyNurse
    You saw your patient not her disease process, as a result you saw first hand what a positive impact you made in her day/life. If she was a flat affect and barely moving when you started, I can only imagine what may have been said by others not thinking (or probably caring) what she heard. Kudos to you
  5. by   CapeCodMermaid
    Sometimes a few kind words or a moment of unspoken understanding does more good than all the medication in the cart. We had a morbidly obese woman who was not doing anything for herself. She had a bad case of the I Can'ts. She said she couldn't exercise or even help herself. She would push herself back in the wheelchair and say she couldn't do anything. I explained to her that even the act of sitting upright and changing position in the wheelchair engaged a variety of muscle groups. She started changing position 10 times an hour....eventually lost more than 80 pounds and was able to go home.Thanks for sharing your story. We are all more than our disease processes or body weight.
  6. by   GitanoRN
    unquestionably, she was blessed to had you as her nurse, because you went beyond her facade and illness, therefore, you made her come out of her shell. i have always said that it only takes a minute of our time, to touch someone's heart. i salute you for going the extra mile aloha~
  7. by   PetsToPeople
    You are an awesome nurse!
  8. by   Miller86
    You're a good and kind nurse. I hope you always stay that way. Your post was so refreshing to read. Made me smile at such an act of kindness that some tend to forget on those aweful shifts.
  9. by   rninme
    You are a ROCK STAR!!!
  10. by   aileenve
    Thank you for giving your time and compassion to some one who probably has never had a kind word from health care workers, I have seen and heard many nurses say terrible things about "fat, lazy patients" not to mention the ones who get angry if they are assigned to the morbidly obese. This is the one acceptable prejudice...
  11. by   VivaLasViejas
    I hope that if I ever need nursing care someday, I'll have someone like you who will make the effort to look past the fat and see the woman inside, who's lived a (hopefully) long and meaningful life, raised a family, been somebody. Bless you for your wisdom and compassion.
  12. by   TammyG77
    I agree with all the positive comments!! Way to go!!
  13. by   maelstrom143
    Thanks everyone. I guess I felt I had to post because we all do hear the comments, see the attitudes, and sometimes may even agree with some of them, especially if the day is long/hard and stressful. It is just that I see them laying there and it breaks my heart cause oftentimes they have given up, on themselves and others, and it just makes me want to cry some days. It just felt like something I had to get off my chest, cause even now I am still thinking about that lady and hoping she will fight to get better. I just had the most horrible foreboding when I took care of her that day that she might not make it out of rehab once she discharged from the acute care setting. She just seemed to have given up. I pray I am wrong.
  14. by   nuangel1
    great job.kindness and understanding go a long way

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