Angels In Uniform #NHS #70Years

This last week I had the opportunity to see the great work of the NHS at close quarters for more or less four days.

Sitting by Pops’ bedside meant that I saw just how hard the staff work.

By the time I got there, the Doctors and Consultants had done their rounds, so I didn’t see them, but I was fortunate enough to meet the many amazing support staff, nurses, ward sisters, cleaning staff and catering staff without whom the doctors wouldn’t be able to do their jobs. The ones who are really paid a pittance for all the good they do.

I watched as difficult patients were handled in sensitive ways, the elderly were given the care and respect they deserved, patients both young and old were welcomed into the ward with a smile.

And all that I encountered, from the bay nurses to the student nurse, the ward sisters, to the pain relief managers, were all so wonderful with my Pops.

And he, in turn, made sure that he had a smile, a please and a thank you, ready for them all.

It’s a simple thing, to smile, but that smile can make the job of a tired nurse so much easier.

We had running jokes with our jovial student nurse, Abigail, a young lady from Zimbabwe.

Rishi, Pops fave bay nurse was so great at explaining things to us, and he spoke Punjabi too, so Pops was glad. Even though he speaks fluent English, his mother tongue is his mother tongue!

Loved old Rob the tea man! When Pops was nil by mouth, he’d sneak up to me and whisper in my ear to ask if I’d rather have his tea, instead of letting it go to waste… He wasn’t allowed, but as we had built a rapport over the days, we were mates!

Liz the original Ward sister was lovely, helping me over the phone the first day, and making sure I knew exactly how Pops was.

There were so many others there too.

And they helped make Pops feel so comfortable, and me.

So well, in fact, that he should be discharged tomorrow!

And just look at this face now.


He’s almost sorry that he has to get ready to say bye to them all!

Despite the not sleeping well at night, with the myriad beeps of monitors, the countless wake ups to take obs, and the groans of other unfortunates, he still appreciates all they, and the NHS did for him.

(And he always will, he was an NHS dentist himself, and he gave himself fully to his own job, deciding not to go private so he could give affordable care to those around him).

So here is a little verse, thought up as I drove to work this morning. (Yes, I am back home now, and will be driving back to Pops on Saturday!)

Machines bleeping
Patients not sleeping
They can’t
Constant requests
Are patients pests?
They aren’t
Nurses are waning
Are they complaining?
They don’t
Angels in uniform
Will they ever change form?
They won’t

Ritu 2018


An Update On Pops and Ronovan’s Weekly Haiku Challenge #209 Old & Days #Haiku #Micropoetry

Thank you all for your kind wishes regarding Pops and his ill health. As regular readers, you all know how much he, and my mum, means to me.

Well, I went with my gut instinct.

I received a message in the early hours of Sunday morning to say a CT scan was required and possible surgery.

My mind was made.

We deposited the children with their other grandparents, and Hubby Dearest and I rushed (as fast as you can rush in the heat, and on a three-hour motorway journey where the M1 will inevitably have roadworks and traffic) up to Birmingham.

And I am so glad I am here with him now.

He looked so tiny when I got here. This wasn’t the vibrant Pops I knew.

The anaesthetic and morphine had him in a muggy daze and for the first couple of hours, he kept on waking up, and saying hello, not registering that we had been there a while.

He was very pale, but a welcome pale from the almost jaundiced yellow he had been the day before.

It appears (though this is not conclusive) that there may have been an ulcer caused by regular long-term medication that burst, causing a perforation, or tear in the bowel. The possibility of gastroenteritis from a few days before may have aggravated the issue, causing the tear, and then subsequent seepage into his body from the bowel, that created the extreme pain he had been suffering.

Long story short – he needed major surgery to remove the torn section of bowel, and then rejoin it all, and drain the unneccesary ‘stuff’ (yes, technical medical term there!) from around it.

The surgeon said the bowel was so red and inflamed it was angry, or ‘vexed’ in his words.

He was wired up to all sorts, tube in his nose, oxygen mask on, catherer in, various IV drips with saline and antibiotics…

But the surgery went well, straightforward, they said.

He regained a little colour before we left, but he was still really groggy.

I made the decision then that I need to be with him for a few days at least.

So, here I am, tapping into my Surface whilst he dozes by my side.


He looks wonderful (well, as wonderful as you can with tubes everywhere) a smile on his face when I arrived. It warmed my heart ❤

He’s taken a few steps and is on fluids only still at the moment, but he has definitely turned a corner… a huge one!

My heartfelt thanks to the NHS team too, who have been so amazing since he was admitted. They are always around with a smile on their faces, nothing is ever too much of a big job for them, and if you can spare a smile and politeness for these angels, they will always go that extra mile, without question.


And so, I found Ronovan’s prompt words, Old & Days, a good prompt for a little Pops based Haiku, to celebrate this time we have together, chatting in between his dozes…

Nothing better than
Spending days with our elders
Old wisdom passed on

Ritu 2018

It wasn’t all bad though, yesterday. There is something else I want to share… but I’ll save that for another post!

Til then, peace out Peeps! I love you all! 

A Bridge Over You – FFF 25

It is Tuesday evening which means Flash Fiction Foray Time with Matt the Book Blogger!

Check out his prompt post here.

The song this week, ‘A Bridge Over You’ by The Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Choir, released this Christmas, hoping to get to the Christmas #1 spot!

“There you go Mrs Smith, all nice and clean now! Sorry, what was that? Oh yes, I know, I hope your son will get over here this Christmas too. I’ll be here with you as well, don’t you worry. Oh, I can hear another bell, excuse me…

Yes, Mrs Jones, what can I…? Oh, yes I see, let me just adjust your pillow. I know it’s not the same as home, but I’ll try and make you as comfortable as I can… Sorry…”

Bell after bell…. Only one of her and sixteen demanding patients… Thank God she loved her job!

A tribute to our hard working nursing staff.

Well I Wasn’t Expecting That… 😐

It was an eventful week last week at school with Lil Man.
* a whack to the back of the head on Monday from a ‘friend’ at school
* a football in the chest, winding him on Tuesday
* a telling off from the deputy head for being a bit silly on Wednesday
* a swollen finger after basketball club on Thursday
* suspected it was broken on Friday, got it checked by a first aider, who suspected no breaks but extreme bruising…

Saturday, no football for him, but then Lil Princess complained of a heel hurting…
Inspected it, no splinters, but a lump. It hurt when she put pressure on it.

So I tried to ring the doctors on Monday for appointments for both… This is the 26th, yeah? An appointment suggested for the 13th Feb!
I managed to coax one for today, the 30th.

But they only booked Lil Princess. Its ok, our Doc is lovely, I’m sure he wouldn’t mind helping out by checking the other Lil one out too!
Well, we got there, he checked her heel, nothing he could see or do, apart from recommend a padded insole… Right…

Then I requested he check Lil Man who had a verruca that wasn’t going away… Ok, checked, then moved onto his finger, which had started swelling up again. He confirmed no break, but strained ligament, so to take care.

Dare I ask for more? He’d already seen one extra patient, and signed for a prescription for me… But I was concerned today, my thumb, fore finger and middle finger of my right hand have been feeling like they have pins and needles since late morning, or numbness…

And I left the surgery with the news I may have Carpel Tunnel Syndrome.
I’m to see how it goes for a few days and if no improvement, to return.
Best case scenario – it’s all ok
Or I need a splint hand strap
Failing that, injections…
Worst case scenario – an operation, on my right hand…

Told you, I wasn’t expecting that!!!

I came here for the kids, who came out with nothing major, and I came out with a possible diagnosis for a potentially debilitating condition!


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GJ Stevens

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