A while back, the moms in one of my kidney moms groups had a thread going of You Know You’re In The Hospital A Lot When…
I was thinking about this again this week.
You know you’re a hospital regular when…
You’re friends with the custodians, a lady from the mail room, the cafeteria checkout personnel, the coffee shop guy, and the ladies who drive the PATmobiles. (The PATmobile is a golf cart that carries patients across the hospital. Patient Assistant Transport)
A good number of your possessions are labeled in Sharpie with your name and room number. And the room number’s been crossed out several times.
You buy two of some things so you can just keep one in your suitcase.
You keep a suitcase packed at all times.
The regular storage spot of a few of your possessions is in your hospital bag. 🙂 (I have a tote bag that’s my Suitcase Supplement that lives inside the house – my suitcase lives in the car – and holds my computer case, extra knitting, the Kindle, and a few other things that just live in there.)
You see hospital staff more regularly than your relatives.
You check out books at the hospital library, you do not have to give them your patient’s name, because they already know it.
Your child’s correct diaper size and a few favorite toys from the playroom are waiting for you in your room when you get there.
You walk down the hallway at the hospital, and at least 1 out of every 5 medical personnel you pass know you or your child by name.
Other parents contact you (or friends of friends contact you) when their child needs to be admitted, because you know all the ins and outs.
You have a standard care package to bring to those parents, consisting mostly of things you’ve hoarded from previous stays.
You have your child’s hospital ID number memorized.
You’ve mastered the art of pushing a stroller and an IV cart, and can do so through the cafeteria as long as it’s not a busy meal time.
Your kid has a special game he plays just with the ladies behind the desk on the floor.
They ask if you’d like an escort from your room to wherever you’re going (Xray, clinic, whatever), and you really don’t need one.
The OR staff knows when they come to get your kid that they don’t need to bring a bed/crib because you’ll just carry him anyway.
Hospital admissions serve as the backbone of your mental calendar. (When was X event? Let’s see… Teddy had just been discharged after a line infection…)
You know the date of the housekeeping lady’s son’s wedding – and she brings you the soft toilet paper when you’re admitted.