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Journal entry...

Wednesday, April 30, 2014
This morning I had an experience which took me near to tears. Let me start off with this, I have been doing rounds at a local hospital and then go straight over to the Family Med clinic.  Monday morning I met a patient's wife who was very kind, but rather in denial.  I spoke to the wife due to the fact that her husband had taken an Ativan at 3 in the morning and wouldn't stir. She told me about her husband, currently 52 yo who was diagnosed with colon cancer 13 years ago.  He has a history of battling this awful disease with intermittent chemo and radiation therapy. However, the disease had metastasis to his liver, gallbladder and lungs within the last year. He had lost so much weight, a term we call cachexia (a stage far worse than anorexia) and energy.  By Tuesday, he had lost all will to eat, it was so bad he denied the strength to suck from a straw. 

The wife, Tuesday morning was grieving terribly.  She vented to me for almost a half hour.  I sat there and listened to her express fear, concerns and loss of hope for her husband. I mentioned to her that I had worked with many cancer stricken patients through my previous employment and training. I expressed hope for her and asked her about faith in a supreme being.  I usually don't bring up religion, but this happen to be a catholicism based hospital with nuns walking around. Furthermore, she expressed her love for our savior and His resurrection. It was a rather peaceful moment. 

Here it is Wednesday morning, I decided not to visit her first for I kept waking her up each previous morning and I know she hadn't slept well.  However, as I was leaving the floor, literally, as I walked around the corner to go down the steps I hear my name.  I roundabout to see the wife running towards me. With tears in her eyes, she expressed her appreciation for my willingness to listen and thanked me for being apart of her husband's care team. 

It truly made my day. It wasn't from any medicine or procedure I had prescribed, but a willingness to listen and provide spiritual hope. 

As you may tell I finished my Psych rotation.  Proud to say, 'I made it through.' Too many tells to tale.  One patient was continually telling us that while she slept men were breaking in through the ceiling and raping her.  She would state that she could smell their semen on her. Now keep in mind she was in isolation. One morning, I kindly told her that it wasn't semen, but that she hadn't showered in four days. Furthermore, if she didn't like you she would cast you off in the name of god.  And she loved to 'speak in tongues,' which was really a bunch of gibberish sounds. 

 One patient knowing he had C-diff, smeared his feces on the wall. A few 50 year olds who had wasted their life away on drugs and alcohol and had no do desire to clean up. And some sad cases, twenty year olds who had been sexually and physically abused by family members, which pushed them into disorders. Behavioral med, I believe is best described as working with patients that have true chemical imbalances, others who haven't learned to make correct choices and others who just don't know where to find answers.  


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