An Example Of Kindness
(“duty world” column found in old army newspaper in hawaii)
PFC Denise Daisy, patient care specialist, Ward Pluto, had ten minutes to spare before her shift was over. All her duties were long gone and done ~ except one. This last duty was taken upon herself voluntarily.
“Want your feet raised, Maybalene?” she asked softly of a girl encased in a cocoon of plaster.
Painfully but with gratitude the patient nodded.
Daisy raised Maybalene’s feet. “Is there anything else I can do for you before I take off?”
“Juice,” gasped Maybalene.
Daisy went for the juice. On her way, she fluffed up the scrunched pillow of a grim-faced older lady lying in a sea of tubes blooming out in various directions.
“Thank you, young lady. You’re very kind. Will you get me some juice too? Oh yes, and could you change the channel on that television set?”
“Of course, Mrs. Newport,” replied Daisy ~ and did as she was bidden.
“I want some juice too, you blankety blank blank,” cursed a patient who had just arrived at the ward and in a raging mood.
“I’m sorry, Kathy,” apologized Daisy. “But you’re on a restricted diet. How about a game of backgammon instead?”
“How did you know my name?” demanded the patient.
“I checked when I saw you being wheeled in here by the other patient care specialist,” explained Daisy.
“Well, I’ll be!” grimaced the new arrival.
“Well?” said Daisy
“Want to play a game of backgammon?” Daisy checked her watch. “I have time now. I’m off duty.”
“Why don’t you leave this pit then?” the new arrival snarled. Her eyelids fluttered. She stared at the bandage-wrapped stump of her recently amputated leg.
“This isn’t a pit,” said Daisy. “This is Ward Pluto, where all the patients are always happy.”
The patient wrenched with discomfort. “I’m not happy.”
Daisy smiled, “You will be.”