Sunday, February 10, 2008

Double Duty

Those of you who have experience with hospital stays know that it is helpful to figure out some "coping" tricks. No, I don't mean holding your nose while eating hospital food, although that might qualify as helpful. A better example was one stunt I learned. When the technician comes in the room, switching on the bright lights at 4:30 in the morning, the temptation is to put your head under a pillow and pretend you are still asleep. It is a little difficult to act alert and happy when you know that she (or he) is going to stick a needle in your arm and draw blood. But believe me, rather than gritting your teeth and staying silent, you'll feel better if you smile and start a conversation. An easy question in the situation is, "What kind of shift do you work?" There are so many different shifts in a hospital that some times I was surprised by the answer.

One of my surprises was a young girl that told me she worked at the hospital drawing blood from 4:00 AM to 12:30PM. She was good at it, too. But then, after a little house work, she went to work as a cashier at the local super market from 5:00 PM until 11:00 PM. She was obviously from the islands and whether legal or an illegal, my thought was that this country could use a lot more young people like her.

1 comment:

kenju said...

I have often been amazed at the number of foreign people around here who seem to work almost non-stop around the clock. They certainly have a stronger work ethic than most Americans!