Goshen News, Goshen, IN


March 23, 2014

WHOLE FAMILY: Being the patient is humbling, educational

Being the patient is humbling, educational

Super cliché, I know: The nurse as the patient. But I can’t help but write about it. It’s too ripe with comment, critique, color and ... cliché, I guess.

Yep, so I was the patient recently — still am, I suppose. You might remember I ruptured my calcaneus (“Achilles”) tendon while jumping rope? And it needed surgery to be best repaired? Well, I had that surgery March 11 and I’m mostly home and recovering.

I’ve learned gobs and gobs, and every day I get something new to consider. Here’s a potpourri selection of my nurse-as-patient revelation with specific thoughts to nurses.

• No matter how much worse it could be, if your injury or sickness is bad for you, it’s bad for you. I’m not wallowing in self-pity, but neither was I comforted, at least initially, by the words, “Well, it could be worse.” My tendon was snapped, leaving me hobbled; that was bad enough. Nurse: Allow your patients a few minutes to be angry about their circumstances. It’s OK to agree with them when they sullenly say, “This sucks” before you try to comfort them.

• Varied and eccentric worries might plague you, things others might find odd. My thoughts before surgery day? What underwear do I wear? What if I say something crazy while doped up? What about the no-coffee headache I’m sure to have? Will they laugh at my flabby body while I’m under? Should I shave my legs before I go in? What if I die? Will I know I have died? Nurse: Don’t assume you know what concerns your patient. Ask. Share some of the odd (to you) concerns so they know they’re not alone in their thoughts and that you get it.

• In many situations, the main thing is NOT the main thing. Sickness and injury birth dozens of offspring troubles. My heel itself doesn’t hurt a bit; my heel is no problem. What’s awful is the loss of income for at least six weeks because I can’t work, the extra time and tremendous effort it takes to do the simplest errand, the displeasure of a dirty house because I can’t easily clean well, the mild depression that wants to settle in at least once a day, the enormous financial burden. Nurse: Think about your patient as mother, father, student, worker — whatever he or she is. How does the illness/issue affect those roles? So much is touched by even a seemingly benign procedure or condition; don’t forget that.

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    July 23, 2014

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  • GROUNDS FOR INSANITY: Schrock boys could add some excitement to White House EDITOR’S NOTE: Rhonda’s Schrock’s column normally appears on Mondays, but was moved this week due to fair coverage.What a wonderful time of year. As I write, a summer rain is falling. Instead of bundling up in layers, tripling my normal circumference

    July 20, 2014

  • Puppy in perilfrom parvo Dear Dr. Weldy’s: My neighbor’s puppy is sick with parvovirus. Are my dogs at risk? What can you tell me about this illness?Dear reader: If your dogs are current on vaccines, they are at very little risk of contracting this virus. Parvovirus is a com

    July 20, 2014

  • SHADES OF GREEN: Educating future leaders in environmental issues is important Thinking about my future year at Goshen Middle School, I found this essay I wrote in 2009 that I will read often while working with my 12-year-old students.***I’ve had many mentors who have led me down my path of education. Ones who have inspired; on

    July 20, 2014

  • GN140720 whole family 01 A special memory on graduation day Today I get “pinned,” a nursing-school version of a graduation ceremony during which we say a pledge to take good care of people and grin goofy-like — I’m sure I will — as our favorite faculty gift us roses, handshakes, and a little gold broach.Oh, a

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • 'Staycation' a simple, but fun alternative One of the column topics that I get a lot of comments, compliments and feedback on is when I write about my vacation adventures (or should I say, misadventures?).Since I took a spring vacation this year and didn’t have any other plans to travel, I de

    July 19, 2014

  • Calls aboutlarge, green June bugs increasing The caller was a bit frantic as she described huge bugs flying all around her backyard, seemingly chasing her around as she tried to investigate what was going on near her garden. She described them as shiny green, and shaped somewhat like a Japanese

    July 18, 2014

  • GN140718 dirt on gardening grubs DIRT ON GARDENING: Grubs, left untreated, will continue to cause damage Bugs are a gardener’s worst nightmare — or seemingly so. Every year we are confronted with these pesky critters that enjoy eating the leaves and vegetation of our prized landscapes and vegetable gardens — sometimes even the vegetables themselves.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo


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Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

Yes, I work at eating healthy and exercising
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Changing my diet and exercise frequency is a work in progress
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