Friday, September 17, 2004

I Hope to Be Pleasantly Demented

Fourth day on the job after the long vacation:
One of the patients in my CCU is bleeding. We're hoping she stops bleeding but for a a good while it looked like we were going to have to rush her to the OR. This time I managed to keep calm and actually sounded like I knew what I was talking about. Maybe next time I'll actually even sound confident.
Well, to the point. It was during my internship when I noticed that there are two types of demented elderly. There is the angry demented elderly and then there are the pleasantly demented elderly. The angry demented just about upset everyone they know. Family never visits, no one ever calls, the home health aids are constantly changing because they are just so hard to deal with.
Then there are the pleasantly demented ones. They are always smiling, even during codes, even during their own codes. I love them. It's almost a blessing. They don't even know how much they don't know or how slow they've become or how incontinant for that matter. We love them because they make us feel like we're doing something for them, even when we're not.
I've resigned myself to a future of Alzheimer's. My memory is horribly bad and if I don't get alzheimer's then we can pretty much junk the whole disease-progression theory.
I just hope to be Pleasantly Demented.