HELLO FROM EAU CLAIRE, WISCONSIN:

HELLO FROM EAU CLAIRE, WISCONSIN - city of big bottoms and small minds.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Angels of Mercy


Sometimes I will open my show talking about having spent time in a nursing home to re-hab my right leg after a terrible crushing motorcycle accident that kept me laid up at the nursing home for nearly three weeks." I have seen the future", I say, "and it's not pretty."

Luckily, I developed a nasty infection in the lower part of the injured leg and had to be transferred to Luther Hospital. It felt like I was moving into the Ritz Hotel!

Please do not misunderstand. The staff at the nursing home were all wonderful women who gave of themselves fully for the duration of their shifts. But they were really understaffed and overworked. And still managed to carry themselves with dignity and a smile. The problem is that the patient/nurse ratio is sadly skewed an the employees are working their buns off! - clearly a case of under paid' over worked.

This time around with Doug, I have been to see him every day for three weeks. We knew that Doug was "pining away" after Walter, his daschund, as he had never, ever been away from his best friend for such a length of time.

For the past three weeks I have been first to Sacred Heart Hospital to visit a dear friend who was then transferred to Luther Hospital for intensive heart surgery, The doctor did three bypasses and installed a brand new valve. Within 12 hours my friend had a heart-stopping attack and the doctors, in addition to performing CPR, then had to intstall both a pace maker and a defibrillator.

The other night Kim and I were visiting with Doug and discussing if there was any way we could smuggle Walter in for s short visit before bed time.

Then our "Angel of Mercy" sauntered into the room to check on Doug and overheard our doggie conversation. This sweet and understanding lady said that if we were to bring Walter up the following night in his traveling case there was no reason that Doug could not spend some time with Walter. She assured us that she would inform all nurses on duty to "look the other way.

I wish you all could have been with us when we unzipped Walter's carrying case and carefully sat him on his dad's lap. Walter was so glad to see Doug that he licked his face for a good five minutes, all the while his little tail lashing back and forth.

As we were preparing to leave I pulled the truly angelic RN Shannon Ceratto aside and begged her to please let me "pay it forward" by bringing in a couple of my home made large pizzas for an evening snack on tuesday night,

So the date has been set.

Last night Kim and I took Walter in for his second visit with his "daddy". Talk aboutd therapy!!!

Thank you Luther Hospital and especially thank you to Registered Nurse Shannon Ceratto for making it all happen. What a very special evening!


This May Angelo poem i dedicated to the caring staff of Luther:

Touched By An Angel

We, unaccustomed to courage
exiles from delight
live coiled in shells of loneliness
until love leaves its high holy temple
and comes into our sight
to liberate us into life.

Love arrives
and in its train come ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pain.
Yet if we are bold,
love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls.

We are weaned from our timidity
In the flush of love's light
we dare be brave
And suddenly we see
that love costs all we are
and will ever be.
Yet it is only love
which sets us free.


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