Sunday, October 07, 2007

On the Horns of a Dilemma

At the stroke of midnight on October 1, the hospital we had frequented for over forty years with our broken bones and gory abrasions, always known as Bon Secours, became Beaumont, Grosse Pointe. And, with my customary sense of occasion, I was there. Literally. In a bed. I certainly hadn’t intended it. I swear that when I had pneumonia seven years ago and they gave me a shot, they told me I would never get it again. But, apparently, it’s only good for five years and I fell victim to pneumonia for a second time. This time with pleurisy. So after several X-rays and a CT scan, I found myself admitted to the hospital. And that’s where my problems began.

I was wheeled into my room sometime after midnight and the first thing I noticed was that the television next to the other bed in the room was blaring away. The nurse kindly turned it off, noting that my roommate was sleeping. But, at 6:00 a.m. that television came on and was not switched off until I left, thirty-four hours later. Have you any idea what shows are on at 6:00 a.m. on a Sunday morning? Her visitors came and went. My visitors came and went. Meals came and went (very fancy now, you pick up the phone and order what you want. Unless it is something not on your allotted diet and then they tell you that you can’t have it.) Quiz shows, soap operas (her stories), movies, the Home Shopping Network— I was forced to listen to it all, whether I wanted to sleep or not.

I could, I suppose, have told her to turn it down/off. Or could I? What is the definition of “reasonable noise?” It made her happy and I was forced to ask myself where her rights ended and mine began. If the hospital provides the television, it is with the expectancy that patients watch it and the sound is collateral damage. It wasn’t her fault that I like complete silence or my fault that she likes noise. I vented my feelings on the pad of paper provided by the nice lady from “Guest Services” (don’t you love it?) and I am about to write a letter to the honcho in charge. The only reasonable suggestion I have is earphones and they would probably get mixed up with the oxygen thingies we had in our noses.

I am glad I am home.

1 comment:

candyschultz said...

Good god Beryl. I am glad you are home also. I hope you are feeling a while lot better. I am glad you are writing as I would probably end up there also if I were ill and I would not go quietly if someone left the television on constantly. I can only think that your roommate was a very inconsiderate person.