Today I had a good day. I woke up with a big smile on my face, looked out the window and couldn’t resist heading outdoors and enjoying the sunshine!! Melissa taught her FIRST EVER yoga class tonight at Kits Yoga!! Way to go Melissa!!! You are so inspiring!! Here’s a picture of her very first class :)
I don’t have any great stories from my patients this last set at the hospital. Everyone was too sick to want to have happy conversations with this perky nurse. I did however, notice something that happened to 2 of my patients, and a friends grandma as well who was also in the hospital last week. These 2 similar patients both were admitted to our ward with pancreatitis. This illness is caused 80-90% of the time by chronic alcohol consumption or gallstones. One man came in Friday night who was in his early forties. He’s the owner of a popular pub downtown. When asked by the nurse admitting him about his alcohol consumption, he answered “2-3 beers per week”. The nurse said that he looked at him funny and asked “Really? That’s pretty good for owning a pub!”. The guy then said, “Oh, I mean a DAY. 2-3 beers per day”. He looked relatively healthy, and I guess figured that this type of lifestyle was okay since he had never had any medical problems before. Later that day when I was caring for him, we got to talking about his current situation and I was asking him how he felt about it. He expressed something along the lines of “I guess I’m going to have to change my habits. This definitely has been a wake-up call”. I replied, “yeah, I guess sometimes these types of things can be a blessing eh?” He definitely agreed. It’s as though he was happy it happened to him, because now he was going to do a complete shift of his health.
Another lady in her early 40s was also admitted to our ward early one morning, diagnosed with pancreatits – a common theme this week – and also has a diagnosis of type 2 Diabetes for 2 years now. I checked her blood sugar levels, and they were pretty damn high. I asked her whether or not this was a normal level for her, and I further asked how she manages her diabetes at home. She looked down at her lap, feeling embarassed, and said that she had never thought about trying to control her blood sugars. She had never even checked her levels before. (This is extremely dangerous for someone with diabetes, as the complications are endless if not managed properly). After having explained this, she looked up at me and said, “I guess I’m going to have to start now. I want to. It’s a good thing this has happened to me, that I’m here in the hospital ready to get help. It’s a blessing, a wake-up call.” I nodded, and didn’t have to say much at all. She knew that she had some major changes to make.
Don’t let your bad habits get so out of hand that your body has to shake you up and give you a wake-up call. If you’re aware of something that needs to be changed in your life, start now. Start with small changes. Maybe seek help from your doctor, or start researching online of ways to alter your lifestyle. You never know what type of wake-up call you’re going to get. Some of us aren’t as lucky as these patients who had just a minor shake-up. A friend’s grandma who was in the hospital this week, was a chronic smoker and drinker. For her to stop smoking, it took the doctor to tell her “you’re not going to make it through heart surgery if you end up needing it. There’s no point in even trying.” My friend said she perked up the next day, started walking around, quit smoking and drinking all together, and had a complete change of attitude. Crazy.
Don’t wait for a wake-up call! Think of ways you can become more healthy by changing your bad habits. We all have some! Everything in moderation :)
Smile with your heart!