Monday, October 13, 2008

Eventually

Months passed and many days the most exciting thing that happened was going to the post-office, opening my mailbox, hoping and hoping there would be a letter from S. Sometimes the ride to the rail road station where I would deposit S's stepfather was exciting. I had a strange car for a little while, that did not have a wind shield but it did have a rumble seat. It was fun watching Mr S trying to hold on to his hat and his briefcase and his newspaper. For some strange reason he liked me and I could do no wrong in his eyes.

After a couple of months it became evident that there were not enough patients to keep me busy eight hours a day. One reason was that we only had two orthopedic doctors and the internists did not take advantage of the fact that we had a PT. So I worked at the county hospital in the mornings and volunteered at Dibble General Hospital somewhere South of Stanford. It was a military hospital. It had a huge ward for blind soldiers. The patients there had great fun with anybody who entered. They could tell from your steps who you were. Heels of course gave it away that you were a woman. And then the jokes began. Sorry, but your slip is showing. Or, Don't you think you have a little too much lipstick on today. Or, did you stay up all night? You look exhausted.

There was one young man who had stepped on a land mine and aside from other wounds had lost his two eyeballs. His company was next to the company my husband served in. So I felt I owed him some of my attention. He had two burning desires. One was he desperately wanted to drive a car. The other was trying to go square dancing. I allowed him to do both. I took him out to a very unused County road and he obeyed my instructions perfectly. He could tell from my voice how acute the next curve was. He was happy with half an hour of this and said he would never need to do that again. Square dancing is greek to me so I just took him there and let the dancers take care of him. He did well.

One time when I picked him up and he got into the car I was startled to see that he was cross eyed. I said' Excuse me, but you have become crossed eyed. Oh, he said, I must have put the wrong eye in the wrong place. He turned away from me and fiddled for a while and when I saw him again everything was normal.

When I discovered that his calendar was so full that he could hardly manage, I bowed out and felt he was well taken care of.

One interesting case I feel I want to mention. One GI who had fought in Africa came in and there was no extremity that was not in a cast. And they all looked set in all directions. His wife had come from Montana to take care of him. He was in a lot of pain and she was so sweet and caring. I never saw him with casts removed, and yet, after a couple of months it was announced that she was pregnant. They were both extremely happy about the developments.

4 comments:

sarah said...

When there's a will, there's a way!

Jamie Watson said...

Gosh! I love how you let that man drive on the country road. That is so wonderful of you. And of course, the story of the man in the casts was terrific as well. Boy these stories make me smile.

Melissa said...

Sarah: That's exactly what I was thinking! haha!

Haphazardkat said...

Must not have had a cast on "everything" ;)