19 May 2010


My first day back since I don't like to say, and
I had a hospice case in a homeless shelter...
The smell of filth and poverty... the sights and sounds....
All around was insanity, TB, HIV, and VRSA - 
which makes MRSA look "little" by comparison.

Bugs, heat, compassion...

Then the toilet overflowed into the room.
All over the place...actually everywhere!

I know I have taken a major wrong turn somewhere back.
I know exactly where, too.
But I feel I can't fix it.

No lunch, besides.

A group of patients met me at my truck, and were talking amongst themselves.
They needed me to answer a question. Super urgent debate!
Since I am a Nurse. How they knew this, I don't know;
I'm wearing street clothes.

They ask "Can you have flesh AND skin?"
I didn't want a riot, so I put it back to the "lead" guy....
"I dunno.....what do YOU think?"
('Cus his answer is what I'm going to say, no matter what!)
He says "Uh... um.... well.... yeah!"
"Yay - Then I say yeah!
Of COUSE you can have flesh AND skin!"

The group went off, almost dancing, singing about flesh and skin and flesh.
A pound of flesh.

Mc D on the way home - no bun...angus day

And yes! You can have flesh AND skin, for sure; I know this!
Don't we all know this one!


  1. You must have 'that' look about you. You can always fix things. Look at me! I'm fixing me, slowly but surely.

  2. (((( hugs))))

    thought you may have needed that after your day

  3. I interact with a lot of homeless people that have mental health issues! It can be so hard but so rewarding. You did a good thing today even though i'm sure it took a lot out of you. Now take care of you.

  4. Momma always told me there'd be days like these...

  5. I think this must of been a rough time, most of us never have experienced what you have described.....stay safe my friend.....:-) Hugs

  6. Whoah, what a day. And I think I have it rough some times. You were present and did what you do because you care. Take good care of you, Anne. Be safe. Big hug. Big, big hug.

    My son has been out doing homeless ministry. He and his friend ride their bikes all over Houston and spend time with anyone that needs it. He's had some days that are scary and some that are awesome. As a mom, it makes me proud and a little worried.

  7. I'm not bragging, or complaining....
    It's just an actual glimpse into my sometimes not so boring so-called life.

  8. My dear Anne H, I know that you bring a big dollop of dignity and compassion to your patients in the hour of their need. Thank you for aiding the scared, the challenged, and the dying.

    I am so sorry about the overflowing toilets. Goodness sakes.

  9. A friend of mine is a paramedic and to say he's 'disenchanted' with it after nearly a decade in the service is an understatement. He's told me that the longest time it's recommended for anyone to do this kind of work is 10 years or it ends up completely screwing you up...

    Of course, amongst the hoax calls, calls people who are drunk - not dead! - (which account for a large percentage of his patients, to my amazement) and people who call an ambulance because they've busted a fingernail (in the UK, if you say you need an ambulance, they have to send one - and there are no recriminations for timewasting) there is the odd patient who makes his day - and says "thank you"!

    Hope all is well. :o)

  10. Maybe that's why Nurses change around so much....
    I did Pediatrics for years, Med-Surg for years...Psych for years....
    Now Hospice for years...

    Not many of my people say thank you (but it is always implied.)

  11. We need MORE people like you. Smile!

  12. O god. I just graduated with my BS in nursing, and just got my RN license. Haven't started working. Haven't even looked yet. Am scared. I'm 54. Still overweight but working that out. Thanks for a great reminder of why I want to be a damn good nurse. We can do this.

  13. Oh, yes, you can certainly have both... I can attest to that one!

  14. You have a very tough job I think so it makes sense that you would be away from the job for an extended period of time.

  15. {{{{{{hugs}}}}}}}

    isn't skin what's covering your flesh?

    Anne.. thanks for a glimpse into your day.

    {{{{{{{{{{{more hugs}}}}}}}}}}}

  16. Jeez, nothing like easing back into the work routine! Oy, what a day-- and no lunch on top of it :-(

    Very smart waiting for the lead guy to answer his own question.

    Hope today is MUCH easier Anne,

  17. Wishing you an easier day, I know you are a great help to those you meet. take care, think of you often.

  18. You walk a rough walk. It may be shadow to you, but you leave light behind you.

    Yeah, I know. It's something I've learned since taking that journey to better health - always find the positive and don't let go. Never.

    You change lives. For the better. I admire that.

    Hugs to you! My mom's a nurse. Retired now. I know it's not easy.

  19. Yes you can have flesh and skin! I've got lots of both. Hugs to you Anne and thanks for the work you do. Sorry about the overflowing toilet - yuk.

  20. Wow, what a day you had. Glad you're safe and you are a very smart lady...and it sounds like a very talented one as well. It takes a special person to do that kind of work. :)

  21. Thanks, Kim -
    Me - It appears I'm not so smart.... or talented....
    but that's ok - today, that is....
    Just for today, that's ok.

  22. That sounds like a heck of a craptastic day. Thank you for doing the wonderful job you do.

  23. It sounds like quite a day. Sending you some gentle energy...:-)

  24. Um, I wouldn't have thought to throw the question back to that guy...no tellin what your quick thinking saved you from. So, you are smart. I probably would have said something to get myself killed. I'll be sending positive thoughts your way. It sounds like you had another fun day according to your most recent post. Chin up, and go shoppin for some new clothes...shopping therapy always makes me feel better. lol

  25. The bunless burger is alas a staple. The cheapness/convenience is something I have to make the effort to avoid as I'll do it any night I'm tired lol


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