I hope this makes some kind of sense, or maybe it’s just my sense of humour.
(Dedicated to the memory of Wee Shug, a gentleman with dementia and impaired vision who I helped to look after in the 80s. Hugh taught me the value and importance of holism, which should underpin mental health interventions. All Hugh wanted was his daily dose of ‘fresh air’ so he could ‘hae a fag’ in the leafy hospital grounds and I enjoyed pushing him in his wheelchair, a reprieve from passively smoking the exhalations of 29 other men. One day Hugh displayed his assertive side to the bow-tied psychiatrist when denied his outing:
Hugh: Can I get ma fresh air?
Psychiatrist: Sorry, there isn’t enough staff today.
Hugh: Whit? Ya fuckin’ pantomime o’ a doctor ye.)
states the NHS Lothian poster.
‘From 1st of April 2015 all NHS
Scotland grounds will be
(Hugh’s voice in my head)
‘Aye – but will we be?
And by we, I mean us,
not them –
I’m naw April fool.’
It does make sense, Kim and it’s also clever and amusing. I’d have liked to have met Hugh.
Thank you, Jolen. It’s something I’ve been sitting on a while – much is incorporated into short stories or larger pieces of work. Many of the gentlemen I looked after in the 80s had a big effect on me as it was my first experience of caring for people with dementia (I was 23) and other mental health issues. The people I met, in different environments over the years, from mother and baby units to care of the elderly and terminal care, affected me positively in that I was inspired to show the great warmth, love, respect, sense of humour… Read more »
Kim he sounded like quite a character did Wee Shug – I am sure you had plenty of laughs too in your caring roll. It would be nice to think that all in your work were as kind to their patients as you obviously are…
Most are good and caring, and those that aren’t should be dealt with – that’s the way I rolled back in the day. Even had the psychiatrist on a disciplinary, because I was in a position to be able to advocate for the patients and staff and a supportive/intelligent/also caring line manager. Thank you for your comments, Gerry.
Love that, Trevor. Yes, the hospice movement is one I am in great respect of, and would like to think I can align myself with that ethos for end-stage care. The accent was Hugh’s. :^) I’m just a hybrid, That wonderful gesture of humanity likely ensured the unexpected months… !
Thank you for taking the time here.