A thank you note for a Home Care nurse – who actually cared

I have had FIVE pilonidal cyst removals in the most embarrassing of places, my bum!  My chubby, cellulite ridden bum has been viewed by more strangers over the past 6 years then I ever could have imagined.  It’s been talked about, poked, prodded, stabbed, rubbed and sighed over by doctors, nurses, medical students and even some unfortunate friends and family who I needed assistance from in the most horrific of times

Out of my five surgeries, I have had home care from the CCAC four of those times.  Once the doctor decided to stitch the wound closed so there was no need for a nurse – however that didn’t work hence I had the operation again, 4 weeks ago.

Now I am not going to go into the graphic details, because they are not needed for this story, nor are they anyone’s business and trust me – you don’t want to know.

This time around, I had surgery on the 29th of the September and on October 1st the CCAC called me and advised that a nurse from St. Elizabeth’s would be seeing me and responsible for my care.  Every day for a few days I saw a different nurse: male/female, Caucasian/Indian/West Indian, old/young.  They were all fine.  I had no concerns over anyone in particular, I have had bad nurses in the past, nurses who didn’t care about my wound who pushed to hard, who ripped bandages off my skin taking actual skin with the adhesive, so these nurses, the St Elizabeth nurses were fine.

And then I had Zoika (I feel horrible if I am spelling her name wrong, but we all know my spelling skills).  Zoika is a lovely Cuban woman who from the first day I met her until our last day together, took her time, asked me how I was doing.  She took care of my wound with a gentle touch and made certain to use a sterilized water to remove the gauze if it was sticking.  Not once did she ever rip a bandage off or stuff the wound with packing.  It might have taken her an extra 10-15 minutes to be prepared, but don’t I deserve that time?  She cleaned my wound, she cleaned the skin around the wound and she carefully packed me making sure not to disturb the new skin that was forming.

She talked to me like a person.  I was not once a number to her.  I wasn’t just any patient, I was her only patient during the time she stepped foot in my door.  She wrote detailed notes and even pressed my surgeon to give me more time off as I was healing very slowly.  If I had a bad day, she called me at night and asked how I was and I think we were both a bit disappointed this past Sunday when I knew it was my last day with her as I was switching to the night shift in order to go back to work.

I wish this was the norm.  I wish every home care nurse cared the way Zoika did.  I wish every nurse was as patient and took her time really caring for the whole body the way Zoika did.  I know that sometimes there are just not enough minutes in the day.  I get that their job is thankless.  I understand that they are on their feet for hours, dealing with infections and blood and ooze and puss and that it’s a dirty job, but I am so grateful that Ms. Zoika proved to me that it can be done.  That not only can she be a nurse, but she can be a caring, thankful nurse who cares about her patients as if they were her own family.

Anyone lucky enough to have this amazing woman in their home should be grateful.  It could be worse – trust me, I’ve had it.