Bilingual Health Care

Bilingual Health Care

Notre Dame hospital is the best place for Judy to be right now, we are so grateful to the whole medical team here – they have an amazing outlook and attitude on things. You can just feel the culture of the hospital in almost everyone who we deal with. There is definitely good leadership in play in this organization – I see it, I feel it, and I value it.

Just as Judy opted for the Notre Dame program over Scarsdale or Weight Watchers, I too saw an opportunity to improve my French language skills here so also opted for the Notre Dame program over Rosetta Stone! That has afforded all of us some interesting times and conversational adventures. Funniest was, a request from a nurse who just came on after a few days off; only speaks French but visuals with the hand round out the meaning for me. The question from the nurse was where is Judy’s purse and personal belongings? “j’ai tout dans ma voiture. Its time for her medication. Je ne comprends pas. She responds with ” I can’t find the medication. i point to the locked cart – the one that she has been getting meds out of for the last 10 years; not these ones she replies as her finger is circling her ear. (stupid is the inference) It registers for me. est-ce ce que vous recherchez? As I pass her Judy’s bottle of Estregel from Judy’s shelf. This all took a few attempts at each phrase (only one encircling ear, a couple of shoulder shrugs but not once did the middle finger come into the conversation). The nurse is happy now that the HRT medication is found. Judy is watching and listening to all this and asks “how the hell did you get from where’s my purse to here’s my Estrogen”. I don’t really know but if you know any women who doesn’t get their Estrogen replacement when needed I bet she is in your past, or you wish she was. (oh boy I’m going to be in trouble for this one).

I’m late giving you yesterday’s update as it was a busy day. Julie & Rob and Jason came down in the morning, then Judy’s brother Rob (and Terry) arrived from Keswick and stayed for a couple of hours before making the 5 1/2 hour drive back in the same day. Judy was up walking probably the same distance as yesterday but each step with a bit more confidence – the walker, IV, and catheter come with us each time. Headaches still present themselves a couple of times a day, high powered meds are necessary to stay on top of them. We let it go a little too long last night (on top of the busyness of the day) and it took an hour or more to get things settled down to a point where Judy was comfortable. With the lateness of yesterday and my anxiousness to get back to see if Judy had a good night was at the expense of the update.

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