Praise for Memorial Hospital

Published 4:31 pm Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Everyone has a storm story, many of which are stories of extreme deprivation and horrendous damages to personal property.

Mine was unique only inasmuch as I spent Wednesday night at the hospital emergency department. I had gone there for treatment of a deep laceration on my arm and by the time I had received treatment, travel was restricted and I had to spend the night. Naturally, I was ill at ease wondering how things were at home where my husband and the dogs were waiting out the storm.

I saw first hand the way a community hospital kicks in and does the job in an emergency. At the point when I went in, all emergency rooms were full and I was told there was only one physician in the department. All had been on the job since early Wednesday morning, and when I left Thursday morning, many were still there, looking tired, but performing their duties and care as they do every day, while serving with limited resources as the building was on emergency power only.

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There was no air conditioning and cafeteria services were limited. I shared space with a young mother and her infant twin boys, as well as a lady who was in need of respiratory care. She was placed on a ventilator and kept in the ED until they could find a room for her to be admitted.

Come Thursday morning as I waited in the front lobby for someone to come take me home, there was an endless stream of folks seeking a place to plug in their cell phones.

This has now become a new emergency sign of the times. It is evident that when preparing for emergency events, besides getting food, water and shelter, there is an urgent need for cell phone charging. And, that was patently obvious, even after I returned home. A neighbor had a generator and invited me to come for coffee while my phone charged. Life doesn’t get any better than that.

Actually, many of our neighbors weighed in on clean-up chores, sharing food and water and technical advice on how to run a generator. Yes, we went out and bought one.

I was particularly impressed by the neighborhood teens who showed up to help clean the lawns of those of us who found the job beyond our physical abilities.

People do come together when the going gets tough. As further evidence, my daughter and her husband from S. Carolina drove down on Saturday morn to help us clean up, bringing welcome food and supplies in addition to most welcome loving care.

This was not my first time of enduring traumatic experiences.

As a young girl, as I was living with my grandparents, I survived the complete destruction of their home by fire in the dead of winter. Much later came the major blizzard of ’78 in northern Ohio, then a tornado while living in Haleyville, Alabama.

The lesson I have learned is, “This too shall pass. Be thankful for survival.”