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Saturday, May 17, 2014

Helen - The Mary Poppins of ER Nurses

Today's nurse was one I hadn't seen before.  She blew in on a gust of wind and, with great authority and emphasis, declared that "this boy needs to get on a schedule!" before we'd even introduced ourselves.

Nathan looked a little shell-shocked, to be honest, but it roused me out of a bit of a waiting-induced stupor.  I obediently answered a hail of questions as Nurse Helen quickly got a thorough overview of Nathan and our situation, and then whisked out her dry erase marker with which she started  scribbling furiously on our room's whiteboard.

"We'll start with the most important stuff" she announced, putting down times for medication and cecostomy flushes and other set-in-stone items.  Then, with great gusto, she began throwing out suggestions for times for all sorts of things. . ."when do you think he should shower?  Morning or night?  And what about schoolwork?  Better in the afternoon?"

She kept scribbling until the board was filled up with times for exercises, meals, reading and writing, waking and sleeping. She then turned and, putting one hand on her hip, nodded her head toward the board.  "How's that look to you, mom?  Did I miss anything?"

"Nope," I replied.  She didn't miss a thing.

Miss Helen then turned on one heel and surveyed the room with a critical eye, noting several issues she intended to sort out, toot sweet.  She then asked us if we had any other needs or concerns and we mentioned a few things as politely as we could.

Within a half hour, every single thing that we mentioned or she noted was done.

After our newly scheduled walk (this time outside!  I've only been able to take him around the large ER up until now!), we returned to a freshly cleaned, newly reorganized, far more functional room.  Nathan's records had been updated, signs about things he can and can't have had been posted (that had been a bit of an issue!), and a crisp new printed schedule hung right there on the wall.

I'm thinking of asking Miss Helen if she moonlights in the private sector.


  1. Everybody sing: "In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun..."
    Spit spot now-- spit spot!

  2. Having met Nurse Helen today, she most certainly was very reminiscent of Ms. Poppins!

  3. She has been a hoot. . .and incredibly efficient. You should have seen Nathan and me trailing after her on our afternoon "constitutional" outside. . .we were half running to keep up with her pace. She's very nice, but all efficiency and purpose, too. Love her


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