Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Hospital Bath

When Miles is in the hospital I still do a lot for him. The nurses don’t know how best to feed him, pick him up and really what to do for him. They ask me lots of questions about Miles the entire time we’re at the hospital. I don’t mind it. I don’t know any different. I’m the one that gives him all his medications, except for the ones that go in the IV. I’m the one that gives him a bath. I brush his teeth and hair. I’m usually the one to change his diapers. If he needs to be suctioned then I just turn on the machine and do it. If I had to call the nurse every time he had to be suctioned then I’m be waiting on a nurse all day.
Well, for the last two days there have been students on the floor that only have a year left before they graduate as an RN. The same two students have been working with Miles. One is a male and one is a female. The male is the main student assigned to Miles. He’s been the fortunate soul that gets to do all the dirty jobs to “help with his training.” He’s been the one giving Miles enemas, taking out the catheter and changing the poopy diapers after the enema.
Well, I happened to mention while him and his teacher was in the room that I was about to give Miles a bath. His teacher said, “Oh, Anthony will do that.” I told her that I usually do that and that I didn’t mind. His teacher said, “Oh no, let Anthony.” Anthony being the very kind student he is said, “Yes, please allow me. That is unless you prefer me not to.” I figured if the poor guy could do an enema then he could give Miles a bath.
Anthony went to gather supplies and he brought his girl helper along with him. I sat back and observed. Usually when I do it I’m given a pink bucket, some rags, a trial size bottle of Johnson and Johnson’s baby wash and a tiny bottle of lotion. Well, Anthony had the hook up. He brought in the economy size of J&J’s body wash and the equally large size of lotion. They were brand new bottles. He got the pink tub about a third of the way full then tried to open the body wash. It was new so it had the protective seal still on it. He worked and worked and he could not get the little plastic protective label off. I tried not to giggle. He was really man handling the bottle, but to no avail. Without a word about his trouble he ended up unscrewing the bottle with the protective seal still on it. He opened it up and pulled out the pump. As he’s waving the pump around and dripping soap every where he tells me quietly, “I didn’t feel like messing with the plastic.” I didn’t reply. I was afraid I would crack up. His lovely assistant was oblivious to it all. She was busy playing with Miles.
Well, Anthony began to pour soap in the bath. I guess the steady flow of soap wasn’t good enough for him because he began to shake and jerk the bottle so more soap would come out. He was shaking the soap like it was a Ketchep bottle. More and more soap went into the three cups of water. I just stared and began writing this post in my head. More and more soap. As I watched him pour about a cup of soap into three cups of water I knew I would be rewashing Miles hair as soon as they left. There was no way that he was going to be able to get all that soap out of Miles’ thick hair.
When he was satisfied with his three to one ratio he began to wash Miles with the rag. He did a fine job. He was very detailed. So detailed in fact that this sponge bath lasted about 50 minutes. I couldn’t believe it. It went on and on. Nothing freaky was going on. I’m not implying that in any way. The guy was just set on doing a good job. Indeed if Miles had been inspected by the professor after the sponge bath there would not have been any dirt he missed.
After the bath Anthony was generous with the lotion. He spared no expense.
The kid smells great.
Right before the lotion began I got a call on the hospital phone. That was the first time the hospital phone had rang. Everyone else has called my cell phone. Well, I answer the phone and it’s Kathy Hawk. I only tell you who it was because you know her. She was saying the sweetest things and I was having hard time not divulging too much information when the students were in the room. She was saying some pretty personal things, and I was having a hard time responding. I couldn’t tell her that I would call her back because she’s so busy that if you get her on the phone then you just need to take advantage of it then.
So, I was trying to keep my composer while talking on the phone while Anthony began trying to put on the clean sheets. Towards the end of the conversation I began to wonder why he was still trying to make the bed. It was taking forever. When I got off the phone I saw that the girl student was holding Miles in a sitting position in the bed while Anthony was trying to work around her and Miles. He was getting no where. Somehow they were trying to strip the bed and make the bed all without moving Miles’ bottom off the bed. Anthony would get one side done and the other would pop off. He was slightly out of breath at this point. He had been hard at work for over an hour. Miles is totally exhausted at this point. The girl has him sitting up, and Miles is snoring he’s so tired. She’s hunched over the bed trying to hold Miles up while Anthony was reaching over her, beside her and underneath her while he wrestled the sheets and all the wires.
I said, “Uh, why don’t I hold him while you get done?”
“No, that’s okay. Don’t worry about it.”
I look at them huffing and puffing and I say to the girl, “I’ll pick him up, you manage the wires, and then you (Anthony) can finish making the bed.”
We got that all going and Anthony says, “Man, that’s better.” He rapidly finished the bed.
While I was holding Miles he gave me a slight grin. I think he was letting me know that he thought the whole thing was silly too.
Ya know…I haven’t seen Anthony in a while. I wonder what lovely tasks he’s been up to.

4 comments:

anniepooinclyde said...

OK. I JUST LOVE YOUR BLOG'S. I AM READING YOUR BLOG AND I CAN SEE THE ENTIRE STORY AT THE HOSPITAL PLAYING OUT AS YOU ARE TELLING IT. AND IM LAUGHING AT YOUR STORY AS IM READING IT. YOU HAVE SUCH WONDERFUL STORIES. AMD IM SURE MILES WILL BE HOME VERY SOON. IF GOD CAN GROW BACK A HALF OF MY THYROID, THERE ARE NO LIMITS FOR HIM. YOU ARE IN MY PRAYERS.

Start World Hunger said...

guys are so funny sometimes. when they get their mind set on something or a certain way of doing something-it's hard to convince them otherwise. that's hilarious. i'm glad anthony cared so much for miles, though. he seems to be a nice guy. our prayers are with you. know that we think and pray for you often. we love you.

JesusFreak said...

You should have asked Anthony if it was some kind of April Fool's joke.

trish said...

That is great! I am glad you not only have a gift of observation, but of description as well. I love you!