You’re so good to me
And I know
It ain’t easy
You’re so sweet
You must taste just like sugar & tangerines…”

-The Wallflowers

And that, in a few lyrics, summed up my day with my patient – we’ll just call her Isabella.

However, she wasn’t good to me, so it wasn’t easy. But then she’d be so dang sweet. When the Ativan was working. And I totally clock watched on that, today.

My day started with a puddle of pee on the floor. This puddle, and I’m not nearly exaggerating, was about the size of Lake Erie. Give or take a few gallons. So picture if you will, I walked into a patient’s room, smiled, said, “Good morning! My name is Cassie, I’ll be your – what the?” Enter my foot into the Lake Erie of pee. Lucky for me, the doctor was feeling generous (after stepping foot in the Lake as well,) and let me put a catheter into Niagara Falls. That was my high point of the day. It all went down hill from there.

Enter Isabella.

Me: “Good morning, dear. How are you today?”

Isabella: “What kind of drug store IS this?”

Me: “Sweetheart, this is the hospital. You’re in the hospital, not the drug store. I’m your nurse, see?” I handed her my badge.

Isabella: “That doesn’t look like you.”

Me: “I cut my hair. And aged about 5 years.”

Isabella: “Hmm. This is one screwy drugstore.”

Me: “It must be CVS.”

Isabella: “I only shop at Walgreens.”

Me: “Well that makes sense!”

Isabella: “Sure does.”

I stepped into the hallway to answer a call light across the hall and she sat up to the best of her ability, grabbed the bed’s side rails and started shaking them with all her might.


About 20 minutes later, Miss Isabella joined us at the nurse’s station where all we heard all day was, “ISABELLA!” Isabella, sit back. Isabella, don’t pull at that. Isabella, put your shirt down. Isabella, Isabella, Isabella.

I sat at the nurse’s station and took a long hard look at her while she was taking her minute-long cat nap.

What am I going to be like when I’m 80? Will I be this crazy?

Then I wondered what kind of messed up, embarrassing things I’d say.

See – most confused patients who talk to themselves, talk about things they know. They don’t just sit there and make up stuff like they’re in make believe land with fairies and rainbows. Nope. They talk about their parents and laundry and welding and steel mills and dishwashers and their kids.

SOMETIMES they talk about OTHER stuff. You know. Stuff that we never needed to know about. But I never laugh or think otherwise about it, because, when I’m 80 lord knows I’ll be talking about some silly stuff.

80 Year Old Cassie: “Stop looking at me funny or you’re getting some Ativan! I’m constipated! I need prune juice! For real, Claire, no pee-pee accidents today, OK? Did you know that my husband used to love it when I’d…”

And scene.

I snapped out of my day dream to Isabella yanking at her catheter and singing an old Frank Sinatra song.

The saddest part? I was the only one who recognized it.



About Cassie

Two sisters from two misters. What could be more fun?

Posted on October 2, 2010, in Cassie and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Bluz at 80: “And then Max made the shushing sign, and young Jordan muscled his way through to score that shorthanded goal, then Max scored two goals and Mario gave The Cup to Sid. What? I was in Detroit for that Super Bowl game… I saw it myself.

    Hey nurse… you’re cute! Weren’t you on that show “Mercy?”

    • Superbowl game. HA!

      My husband will be very close to that, except he’ll say, “You know, Tupac really didn’t die. And Biggie Smalls made some freaking amazing music. CALIFORNIA LOOOOVE!”

  2. Isabella is kind of my new hero…except for the fact that she gave you hell. Too bad senility and good manners rarely go hand in hand.

    • She was something. The charge nurse called me at home last night because I forgot something and I asked, “So…how’s she doing?” And she said, “I’ve got nothing good to say about her.” And that charge nurse has the patience of a saint.

  3. I plan to be the woman in the wheelchair with rolled down knee hi stockings on and pick scuffy slippers, slowly rolling myself through the hallways drooling on my shirt and saying “Here, Kitty-Kitty!”

    You may come visit me and bring me spearmint leaves and purple hair dye.

  4. You know, I think every job has its share of crazies. Mine involve letters and calls to the editor. But at least they NEVER involve urine. *knock on wood*

  5. I’ll be honest, I HOPE I do some blogworthy shit when I’m 80. Keeps the youngsters on their toes. Wormy @ 80: “Spill a little more rum in it next time, Sparky! Can a sister get a light?” I loved this…totally hilarious!

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