Friday, April 24, 2015


Recently I took care of an absolutely ancient woman who was sharper than I am on any given day (no matter how much coffee I drink). She was hilarious, witty, and pretty much the embodiment of everything I want to be as a cantankerous old lady. She also had a daughter present who was up there in years but wasn't mentally aging nearly as well as the old lady.

The daughter spent a large portion of the ER visit asking the staff questions for which she was unable to comprehend the answers to, trying to figure out the desk phone to set up a ride home, getting lost in the ER while trying to find the bathroom directly across the hall, and stopping any wandering resident she saw to warn them about spending too much time in the hospital away from their families. It was clear the patient was trying to rein her in, but as the patient was ancient and not very mobile it wasn't working too well.

At one point the daughter comes out to the desk and is sort of conversing with myself and another nurse. It was a very circuitous and slightly frustrating discussion, but we were trying hard to help the lady out. Suddenly we hear the callbell phone start dinging, and the other nurse picks up the phone at the desk. On the other end, as she told me later, she hears this: "Is my kid bothering you again? Tell her to shut her damn mouth and leave y'all alone! Get her on in here, I need my foot rubbed!"

The patient stayed on the phone until she heard her daughter shuffling back to the room, and then goes "you're welcome!" and hung up the callbell phone.

I love crotchety old people.


knittynurse said...

That is absolutely awesome and totally how I want to be when I am ancient!

Lynda Halliger Otvos (Lynda M O) said...

Hysterical, and so real too. I love yo ur stories of old people, I hope I get to be one someday !~!

Liz Harris said...

This sounds like what would happen if I were ever hospitalized. My youngest daughter "knows it all" but can't understand a thing that isn't about her.

Fortunately for the local hospital staff she's not on my ICE (In case of emergency) list.

Unknown said...

I just snarfed my coffee. Love it. Got cursed out (F word every 5 minutes) by a very sharp and alert 102 year old a few weeks ago. The only 102 year old I've met with a mouth worse than a trucker.