Adventures In Home Care

1540 – [I close my car door and prepare to start the engine] “Huh – still on schedule.”

1537 – [as I clean my stethoscope, with disinfectant wipes] “I am sorry that I couldn’t have been more help”

1534 – [I move the stethoscope for the final, fourth time. I wait 10 seconds. I hear nothing. He isn’t moving] “If only I hadn’t had this stupid operation, I could have been out there…this would have never happened,” Mr. Crenshaw said

1531 – [She continues to gently rub his torso, his neck and his head] “Come on, little guy,” she says, “Stay with me. You’re gonna be okay.”

1530 – [5 minutes have passed. I am holding a hair dryer over the kid, trying to warm him as she continues to rub, stroke and stimulate the infant that is resting on her lap, wrapped with an electric heating pad. There has been no apparent change in his condition] “I felt him move, I think,” she says.

1524 – [I can hear it – it is faint] “He’s alive. It is very slow, less than one per second, but it is there. He is so cold. Do you have an electric blanket?”

1523 – [His wife is holding the newborn goat in her lap, trying to stroke some life into it’s limp body] “Is it alive?” Mr Crenshaw asks her. “I don’t know,” she replies. [I walk to my bag and grab my stethoscope]

1522 – [His eldest son – aged 26 years – walks in the door, holding something in a dirty towel] “Fuck, Dad. This one is still alive. The other one is dead.”

1521 – “I am just going to get your ‘John Hancock’ on a few more papers, then I will take my leave.”

1520 – “Alright…and I have written my cell phone number here [pointing to my number on a folder], so if you have any questions or concerns before I return tomorrow, please don’t hesitate to call. If I didn’t want you to call me, I wouldn’t give you my number, right?

1358 – [I knock on Mr Crenshaw’s door] “Okay – this should go smoothly. Young, few meds, an anterior approach. Piece of cake.”

0845 – “Okay, hon, I am leaving. I should be home around 3:45. I have 4 revisits on the hour in the morning, then an admission at 2:00, but it is just down the road. I’ll call you if I am going to be much later.”

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