Hospital Stuff-Little Things You Take For Granted!

It is often not known until once is hospitalized just how important the little things are to you. Or when you are ill. Many of you will identify with this. This will remind you and perhaps give insight to those who haven't been ill much or hospitalized before about the little things that matter. Think on this then, please...
There are little things in hospital that matter. A cup of hot tea or coffee. We do not have supplies like this in many institutions. But I have gone out of my way to get someone these when I know it is needed. A simple cup of hot beverage. How about that?
A warmed blanket. Some institutions have them on the maternity floors. A heater jammed full of warmed hospital blankets. When one is chilled, this makes a great difference. It is well worth the trip to find one and to wrap someone in its coziness. They can stop shivering and sleep a bit then.
Visitors. They are strongly discouraged after visiting hours. People just don't seem to understand that patients need to rest, to heal, to sleep. People show up in droves. Bring screaming children. Bring their colds and sniffles and illnesses. That isn't desirable. Think on it. Limit your time there. Don't overwhelm your loved ones. But occasionally we can let you in briefly. Cause we understand your hectic work hours. Or how important it is to say hi and to hug someone you love. So just be nice. And say why to us. We are not monsters. We are trying to help your loved ones. So rules can be bent a bit, but not always. Be considerate, please.
Underwear. Most of us wear underwear daily. Those in the hospital wear johnny gowns and slippers. Few can wear underwear. They don't understand why they cannot wear them to surgery even! *laughing* Surgeons and nurses have seen naked parts so often. We do not stare and make fun of people! Really. Many who have had surgery cannot wear underwear. For weeks or months even at a time. So we celebrate those who have their first Wear Underwear Day! A time of celebration. So things that are meant to be supported can be. And so that men who don't like to dangle their jewels can support them! Smiling now thinking about these First Underwear Days! Even those who have had hip surgery or knee surgery or abdominal surgery cannot wear clothes for some time. I have seen more full moons from women than men in my 21 years in healthcare!
Flowers. Magazines. Books. Laptops. Homemade cards from wee ones. Slippers. Housecoats .Photos. Some homebaked food. A bakery treat. Of course, do make sure what you are bringing is allowed! All these little things are welcome in a strange environment where time one on one is limited. And these little differences make quite a difference.
I hope this made you think a bit. About how fortunate you truly are. And how it is easy to brighten up the hard times of someone who is ill. Thank you for your time. kissesssssssssssssssssssssssssssss...And smiles!
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31 Responses Jan 29, 2013

Its the little things people tend to forget about.

This is so true. I worked in a health care facility for 16 years. We see the same residents everyday and no one comes to visit them. It's a different environment from a hospital but you see the same thing. Why can't they eat or drink this, why don't you guys do it this way or that way. Here's a ? For them why are you not taking care of them or why do you only visit once a month when you live five mins away from the facility. Most of them just want to know that they are still loved for them not what they have in the bank account. My mom had to be I'm a home cause of cancer she spent one week there and there was not one time she was left alone unless she was sleeping. She passed a week later but I enjoyed that last seven days of her life and will always treasure those moments. Health care is a hard business to be in. You cry when they cry you hurt when they hurt and laugh when they do. Thanks for sharing.

I thank you for reminding me of when I had to leave the underwear for surgery it made me laugh and realize we take so much for granted in life's little hiccups.

The little story about underwear is very interesting. It is very funny that on surgical table the sex symbols are no longer any attraction. They are open for the naked eye. !!!

I re-read the story once again. I should say, a beautiful story! :-) :-)

Very Nice!.............good to read a mature post once in a while.....

Well-written. Great to know about your thoughtfulness and observations.

May I add one more : Letters. For a few years, every first Sunday of the month, we used to visit a Government Hospital (in India) which housed mostly poor, illiterate people. This would be during visiting hours, with the permission of the hospital, as a service to check if they needed little things. There were no cellphones in those days. They often needed someone to write a postcard to their loved ones, as they dictated, or to read to them. Some did have a relative/attendant visiting from time to time, but they were illiterate too. I have seen often, that a letter from a distant loved one, an uncle or a daughter, can give so much joy to the patient.

I still do the handwritten letter stuff and I love to receive those treasures.

haha my mom is a retired nurse and she has never said anything like this...but ill bet she would if i asked her about it!!

i missed you as much as your patients missed their underwear ;-)

:-) *savors kisses*

*savors the flush of your cheeks* ;-)

speechless??!! :-O *smirks* *brushes back curls* i need to see those eyes! :-)

i am arent i?? ;-)

yay!! *head swells bigger* not THAT head Cyn!! ;-)

er, what was that last Cyn?? i didnt quite hear you ;-) enjoy the rest of your day Cyn :-)

loves you back :-)

hmmm wonders if you only blush in your cheeks ;-)

oh i see...the "Huntress" flees?? *enjoys the view of you fleeing* ;-)

haha oh now i see!! below you have your animal skin outfit on which just covers the naughty bits right?? ;-)

haha you just KNOW SweetKiester is just gonna POUND us for this thread right??? :P

haha i have noticed that about you!

a delightful combination to be sure Cyn :-)

well you still get a smile :-)

*extrrrrra large smile*

oooo i feel like the hat in a mexican hat dance!! :P

morning Cyn :-) haha...perhaps you would prefer a tarantella??!! creative? maybe maybe not...possessed of a certain wit?? more likely...idiot savant at EP?? i think this may be the answer ;-)

Cyn you are a whirlwind for sure...even sore im sure you would still dance rings around me thing i do NOT possess is dance skills!

haha oh yes that i can do...pressed close..savoring your perfume...the warmth of your skin...the blueness of your eyes :-)

haha well its because of your intoxicating womanly aura then Cyn ;-) and the fire that obviously burns so brightly in you...that is clear for all to see :-) well and the sexuality that just permeates you as well ;-)

18 More Responses

This post has things in it we can all relate to. We all are guilty of take the little things in live for granted at one time are another. The things we all take for granted make us feel most comfortable like a human being .

this is very true

I followed a friend here and I'm glad I did. This was a lovely story and on behalf of all those who couldn't say it, thankyou for all your hard work! :o)

I know what it is like in hospital because I had a few surgeries but I din't know about warmed blankets. Maybe we don't have such in Germany but I hold it in mind and will ask the next time if someone I visit feels cold. :)
Oh the joy of wearing your own underwear, one of life simple pleasures you only get to know if you had a surgery and the first time you're allowed to take a shower, even better!

No, never! I was about 8 times in hospital, once I got another thin duvet, that's all.

And I'm a tall chickie! Either my boobs are cold or my feet! lol

I'm 5'8 and I'm taller than most young ladies around here, although it's been said that todays youth is taller than my generation.

I can totally relate to this post. Once in a blue moon I have to to get IVIG (blood thickener) because of my low platelets. Normal people have a platelet count between 140-400/ppm, and mine hover between 1 and 10/ppm on a good day. Personally it really doesn't affect me on any level, physically or mentally, however for my doctor and nurse that is a different story... Reason for that is because when you are below 40/ppm you can 'apparently' star spontaneously bleeding internally. According to my doctors I shouldn't really be doing anything strenuous, but to that I just literally say 'thanks' and go about my ordinary life. My body still produces platelets, just 2 days slower then normal which has been the case since I was born so as I said it really doesn't register with me as something I should be cautious of 30 years later.

I just noticed I haven't started a new paragraph yet so rather than editing I will start a new one here. lol. Anyhow as I said I get IVIG every now and then (last time was over a year ago), and the most recent would have been, note *Would have been two weekends ago.

My doctors had been on me to get an IVIG treatment for a while, and with a last count of 6 urged me as always to go right into emergency if I felt I needed it, or any bleeding. Well it being a beautiful saturday morning, and me without any plans that day, I decided to walk over to the hospital I have my treatments at when needed, and checked myself in through ER for some IVIG. I had been doing a lot of biking lately so I thought just in case I ever got hit, that and fact I have been well below 'spontaneous bleeding' for the last 12+ months, it couldn't hurt.

I have never been through ER for any of my IVIG before as they have always been booked prior at a set time. I come in, sit in a recliner, bring my laptop because there is free wifi, when i'm sick of that there is a flat screen cable TV, and the nurses bring you snacks between meals times. Coffee and tea refilled regularly too! Well being and ER virgin, my, my was I ever in for a surprise...

After explaining to the ER nurse on duty why I was there, my platelet level, and doctors recommendations, she of course gave me the usual 'your platelets are WHAT?!' Yes I confirm they are insanely below 'warning', and reach to get my wallet after she asks for my health ID which I notice I forgot to bring.

I was then acquainted with a new personality of the nurse from her previous 'concerned, and get you in right away' one. The next 10 minutes were filled with heated discussions on how I can't be served without my health card # and would have to go home to get my wallet, and me rebutting how insane that was, and how I was not walking all the way home(though really it wasn't that far) to get my wallet. This was friggen Canada, land of free health care, and I am a patient of the hospital already that would be on computer 'intranet' which she refused to lookup. Her partner returned to the desk, and after hearing I was an IVIG patient of that hospital said it was no problem she could look me up in the computer,

This post is getting way too long, and I could probably make it into an 'experience', and on second thought there are probably a number of 'experiences' already I could post this under. The post of it was suppose to be to agree with the 'little things' that YES make all the difference in the hospital, whether you are an intake, or visiting kindness, caution, and manners make all the difference.

That being said, I will end this here because it would take many more paragraphs to describe the hospital pleasantness of 2 Saturdays ago, and I haven't even gotten past 'check in yet'! lol.

PS hospital staff are amazingly hard workers, and i mean no slander towards any of them with this post. i did however encounter some choice characters on this visit...

Lol what happened to the rest of my comment? I am using my touch screen so maybe it's just not showing up, or maybe because it got too long/ possibly off topic was edited down ?..,. Lol. If so I understand.

oh its all here on the computer. must have been too big for the hand held. and woopsy that was a bit long lol.

<p>I haven't been had to stay in hospital since I was about 12 and before that it was only for a few days each time but I do still recall the intense lonliness of feeling cut off from the outside world and my freedom to just walk out of the door into the sunlight and go or do just as I pleased. I've often felt that this is as close to feeling imprisoned as most people will ever experience so I can well understand the desire for anyone kept in to just want to be back home again and able to do simple things like fetch a book or a cup of tea on their own again or even just sit in the garden and watch nature for a bit etc. <br />
<br />
My dad went in with Peritonitas a some years back during a really gloriously sunny period and they said it was quite a close call as he couldnt have gone untreated for much longer. Faced with the prospect of living on borrowed time the one thing he was fixated on most in his fantasies was of going for a pint with me and my brother at a country pub on a day as sunny as the one beyond his window. Every day I visited I was reminded of it, and so naturally when he did come out we did just that. That was something like 7yrs ago now I guess and he's still alive but we've probably only gone for a drink together some 3-4 times a year since and now without my brother who reached his finishing post sooner. I've often thought though that it's the old idea of wanting most what we can't have, as when we do have the time or the health to do something we often do so casually waste that time.</p>

Being a healthcare provider I know exactly what you mean. I call it the death watch as the family literally moves into the room of the patient. After saying whatever needs to be said, the family then just sits and stares at the patient as if they will spontaneously combust or watch TV

I really appreciate this story, thank you. I've been in the hospital many times, including isolation and intensive care. Small acts of kindness a nurse can take will change a patient's day; ie noticing if lips are chapped and bringing salve; keeping water fresh, not pulling the nightstand too far away to reach, etc. I had a procedure today and the nurse offered to numb the site for my IV. I was floored! no one every asks me that :) I'm grateful to so many nurses who have made observations that have helped in my healing and offered me encouragement to get better. They truly are angels.

Sometimes healers need help too though... seeing one too many things etc.

A person once said that I was one of the most thoughtful people she had ever met... I didn't know what to say to that but I am me... my mother was a nurse so I imagine I get a bit of perspective from this... And I work in social services myself... I'd say there are few people like me yes... I appreciate your response as sometimes I feel out of place and even such virtual connections help... please take care.

Um, I try to do the right thing - I guess time will tell how good of a person I really am... All sorts of stuff happened health wise and it took quite the toll on me but I just have to get to the next step somehow...

When I was hit while walking I was in the bed and could not move or use my arms or hands to reach the call button. Some of the nurses would walk over from the desk get a TV station for me and then set a few minutes and watch with me. I appreciated them staying that extra few minutes with me. One would even scratch me since I could not move my hands to scratch an itch. My son was abducted from the lobby coming to visit me. I saw a nurse in the doorway with tears in her eyes. She wiped her eyes and said sorry. Her tears said more to me than her word. I will remember that face always. Of course 1 of my 2 biggest days was when a nurse washed my hair. I had landed on my head and tore some skin off sliding down the pavement and they could not wash my hair which felt awful. I think I would have married the nurse who washed my hair right then. It felt so good. I only had a tiny high up slit to see out of. I could tell if it was night or day and one time saw it snowing. But I was so shut off from the world. Then one day after I could move. The nurse who had cried when my son was abducted put me in a chair and wheeled me to lookout a window. It was so wonderful seeing outside again. She was getting a divorce and letting her kids live with her dad because she could not care for them with all the hours she had to work. Yet she took time to care for me. I did appreciate that.

I feel bad for someone that lets their kids live with the other parent because of the work hours they do... hopefully its some sort of joint custody... visits etc.

Ok Next time i check infor plastic surgery or anything medical, i knows who i am calling. But i am a naket nude all nature type of guy. I prolly just need you to tuck me in and a bedtime story or 2 and btw send all the doctors nad nurses home, bc its a sexah partay time. All jokes aside tho, i know whatcha mean tho. My self, i pack along home made cooking things, as well as Starbucks and McD's and Popyes chicken bc we are camping out. Thats just how i roll i guess. Thnx again 2011A.. CheErs

Here are a couple other things that make "ME" happy when I get out of the hospital or any other day for that matter.... I LOVE to feel the air on my cheeks! To see the SKY...WOW! It's the little things we have to be thankful for. I enjoyed your post.

I was recently in the hospital and I agree with what you have said here. The little comforts we are allowed in the hospital are priceless. By far my favorite comfort in the hospital was the coffee mug. The part of the hospital I stay in doesn't like people to keep those after a meal for security reasons. Once, when I was in for an extended stay a few years ago the staff let me keep a coffee mug all day and I felt rich. Amazing how much the small things come to mean.

Very Well written.Very thoughtful and understanding.Thank you.

How very true.

Another thing. If you visit someone in hospital ---> please don't wear cologne or perfume! I remember when I was a patient once and a well-meaning friend came in wearing over-powering aftershave or something like that. I felt like I was going to vomit, but held it back. My facial expression must have told him something because thankfully he didn't stay long.

This is full of tips and hints which I for one wouldnt have thought about without reading of them,and gives good advice concerning both the patient and staff.Very informative and useful Cyn! :)xxxxxxx

Thank you for taking the time to make contact with visitors and possibly future patients - to make the effort, to be human and be so real - it does one good to read your words for it brings us all together and makes the world a kinder place. With much appreciation, Patti x

Thank you, your words reminded me of when we use to be in and out of hospital with my then 3 year old. We would always pack her favourite blanket, books, toys, and anything else she treasured. Sick family was a definite no no, which was not always understood and one seen as being nasty. I did not care. What was important was the health of my child and the children around her in the hospital. Thank you for informing all.

Most important is to show our love that we care and that cures and heals

Some of these are really good ideas. On my recent hospital stays last spring, my major concerns in the icu were privacy, which you have NONE of and my family being able to be there as much as possible. fortunately I had cell phone to contact them when needed. The least of my concerns was a cup of coffee or tea etc. since I was not able to eat and I was in DKA. My vision went totally blurry after being given fluids and being put on insulin iv. I went through, fingers sticks every 1/2 hour and full blood draws every hour for 3 days. I went through 3-4 painful potassium infusions until I refused them due the pain. I went through 4 people unsucessfully trying to put an iv in my arm which caused a blood clot. I went through a bowel blockage which could have killed me with NO gastro doc until after it was taken care of by ME. I won't go into the details. I suffered vaginal trauma due to that and and infection. I had one of the worst hospital stays possible and I'm lucky to have made it out of there alive really, there were many times I was scared I wouldn't. I was released with a DVT in my leg and I went back the next day for 4 more days in a regular room. My nurse in the ICU, the one who released me with pain in my leg, telling me it was due to low potassium, seemed to be telling me at one point that I had an attitude problem and this was all my fault, I wasn't taking diabetes seriously! And then he said I should accept the icu, go with the flow and walk around and talk to people??? How the hell was I supposed to walk around while I'm in DKA with a potassium of 2, 2 ivs in me and monitors everywhere and at that time already most likely a DVT? I wasn't taking diabetes seriously? I was diagnosed 3 days before I was hospitalized and I was already in DKA then, my doctor nearly killed me by not hospitalizing me immediately and then the icu nearly killed me a few times more. I had no idea I had type 1 diabetes before that. The nerve of that idiot. They are all lucky I didn't sue all of them!!!

This is so true. When people are vulnerable they appreciate little reminders of home and little comforts and treats. It really is something worth remembering. ((hugs))

thank you so much for so true..little things are big things indeed when one is sick..sometimes if you are visiting a loved one you might just notice someone in the bed next door with no visitors..give them a smile and a few caring words..can mean so much..your such a caring person you..miss you..cherish you..kissessssssssssss..xoxoxoxoxoxxo

ohhh believe me sister of mine . . . I know all too well . . . I have had more surgeries and time spent in hospitals that I care to confess . . . and your story rings soooo true to me . . . I am completely aware of the little to BIG things about a hospital I would never take for granted . . . when I'm in patient I often think of the days before such finely trained institutions ever were . . . can you imagine what the middle ages must have been like . . . UGHHHH . . . so I am forever appreciative of such things today as modern medicine . . . thank you for sharing this sweetie . . . it's awesome to make folks stop and think about things like this in this fast paced day and age . . . love you sister of mine and thank you soooo much for doing what you do . . . we would be in very rough shape withouts ya's . . .