Monday, January 03, 2005

Going Home

Assuming as we all know makes an @$$ out of u m e, right?

I was very pleased with myself for getting things set up swiftly so that Mr. Handsome could go home shortly after the new year. As I'm taking him his pain and nausea medications so that he'll be comfortable on his way home, he stops me short.

"Thank you so much for taking such good care of me," he begins.

"You're welcome. It's been a pleasure working with you." And I truly mean that.

"I don't want to go home," he admits.

What? I think. I am totally thrown off. Why would you want to stay in the hospital, I wonder. But I remain silent and wait.

"I have been feeling really sick with this cancer and I live alone and don't have anyone to take care of me."

He must see a shade of doubt across my face as I run through images in my head of his loving partner and his friends who have been visiting over the past three days.

"My partner and I broke up about 3 weeks ago. He couldn't handle my being sick. He still visits on ocassion, but most of the time I am alone in my apartment," he explains.

"What about the other friends who have been visiting?" I inquire.

"I don't want to be a burden to my friends, so I won't ask them for help. I feel much better staying here where you and the other nurses take care of me."

The thought had not occurred to me that he might feel so unsupported. His friends stayed long hours and even patiently read magazines in his room while he slept.

My first lesson for 2005, which I supposedly learned in about the second grade. That bad word... Ass-u-m-e.

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