A chance encounter 4/7

By Drum Digital
03 June 2014

What makes Nurse Ngobo feel the way she does about this new patient?

I said, “I don’t want to hurt you and Daddy when I ask questions about her, Mama. I love you both very much but there is something inside me, I can’t explain.”

It was then I asked her about her own mother. She was only too delighted to change the subject, and she told me every- thing I wanted to hear. But Gogo’s face wasn’t the image I saw in my dreams every night.

As I went about my duties, my Mama’s words were ringing in my ears. Dead! The woman who had given birth to me had passed on. So why did I feel burdened by sadness and grief?

After all, I had never known her. She had passed on many years ago, when I was just a small child. Mama Tina and my adoptive dad Jeffrey were the only parents I’d known. They’d reared me from the age of one week. They had always treated me as a beloved daughter. I knew I hurt Mama’s feelings when I asked her questions – but I just had to know more about my origins. Later that same afternoon we received another call from Accident and Emergency.

They were sending up an elderly woman, aged 70, who had fallen and broken both her hip bones.

“She’s also badly undernourished,” Sister told me. “She fell some time yesterday but she wasn’t found until this morning. Prepare a bed for her, Nurse. She’ll be here shortly.”

I nodded and hurried off. I had no premonition that this patient would be different from the others. Even when I saw her being wheeled into the ward there was nothing to warn me this would be anything other than a routine admission.

It was only later, as I looked down at the old worn face of the woman lying on the bed, that something twisted inside of me.

“The doctor has set her hips,” the staff nurse from Accident and Emergency told me. She handed me her chart. Just then the old lady opened her eyes. She stared at me for several moments.

“Where am I?”

“You’re in hospital,” I told her. “You’re at St George’s. We’ll take good care of you in here.”

“I should hope so,” she grunted and closed her eyes.

“Good luck,” the staff nurse mouthed at me and left.

Sister came hurrying up the ward. She looked down at the patient for a moment.

“I’ll take her chart,” she said to me. I handed it over.

“I’ve filled out her admission form and her wrist band. Will you put her name tag on, please, Nurse? And put her chart at the end of the bed?”

I nearly gasped out loud when I read it: Mrs Gertrude Tsila, 16 Settler’s Drive,Nigel.

To be continued.....

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