“Wherever the art of medicine is loved, there is also a love of humanity.” - Hippocrates
Week one is almost over of inpatient internal medicine and I couldn't be happier! Don't get me wrong, I have a great medical team who have all been very helpful and educational, but these long hours on my feet are not exactly what I'm looking for in the future. On a side note, I've discovered how great geriatric patients can be. I used to not like working with "old people" because they were so grouchy. But now I have a whole new perspective on these one of a kind patients.
All of the patients I have seen have made me laugh and smile; one in particular. And how could you not smile when you ask your patient what day of the week it is and she tells you it's Saturday (when really it's Wednesday), it's May (clearly not) and Mother's Day is this weekend and she can't wait to celebrate!? When I remind her in fact it is January she perks up. "What is the date?" she asks me every day. And each day I tell her. And that's when she remembers. "My birthday is coming up!" she tells me. So I ask her how old she is going to be. Most times she tells me 80, when in fact she is going to be 81. But what the heck...you're only as old as you feel right?
Although she's not as sharp as she once was, she can tell you all about her husband, how long they've been married, their kids, her family, where she lives...anything. But when I ask her when her last BM was....well, she's just not sure. And that's the way it should be. When I'm the ripe age of 80, I hope my face lights up when I talk about my 50-plus year long marriage, my children and my grandchildren like it all just happened yesterday. While BMs are important in medicine, especially geriatric medicine, it's just a minor detail in the life of this magnificent 80 year young lady. And it should stay that way.
As I left her this morning, she reminded me to never lose my smile and she told me she will pray for me. She might forget to pray for me but I'll try my hardest not to lose any teeth.
-Stay Sassy, xo