- Aging & Longevity
It's Just Grey Hair!
On December 23rd, I had my first automobile wreck EVER! Thank goodness, it was just me and no one else was involved. To make the long story short.....I ended up with a severly fractured and dislocated ankle. (Which probably would not have happened had it been a regular guard rail and not a cable barrier...but that's a different Hubpage!) I now realize some of the confusion that results from such an accident, as I couldn't get my cellphone to work and had no idea I was even injured until I tried to get out of the vehicle.
Fortunately, there were several other vehicles that stopped to help and called 911. An ambulance arrived, checked me out and loaded me into the ambulance for a quick ride to the hospital.
The Ambulance and Emergency
Don't get me wrong...the service that I was given was wonderful. The EMT explained what she was doing with each step, introduced me to others of the party and told me exactly how long before we would reach the hospital so I could let my family know.
Once at the emergency room, I was quickly ushered into a room and they began to work on my assessment and plan of action. Again, the service and care was wonderful. The husband and little ones arrived shorty after me, and were allowed to stay with me for the assessment. The technicians who took xrays and drew blood explained what they were doing to the millions of questions the children had for them.
So, the only REAL complaint that I have about my entire ordeal is that of my HAIR! I know this sounds foolish, and I am not one to normally be overly concerned about my age or hair color, but in the case of Emergency Services, this was overstated.
For instance, in the ambulance, the call to the hospital was "...We are transporting an ELDERLY 57 yr.old woman with an apparent broken ankle, possibly leg..." O.K., I'll admit, 57 isn't that young, but I'm not ELDERLY either!
The next issue was once the surgery was over and I was in my room. Yes, my injury was quite severe and I had extensive surgery for the repair. Recovery will be long, and ultimately, probably quite painful. But, I have not suffered pain since the emergency room when they removed my sock by pulling it off instead of cutting it!
Once in my room, I was informed that they didn't want me in pain...They insisted that I needed pain meds to recover. The morning after my surgery, about 7 am., before coffee even, a Physical Therapist entered to get me walking. Not only was I still half asleep, the nurses had insisted on giving me pain meds that made me dizzy. I could barely sit, let alone stand!
From this one incident, it was determined that I would need to be sent to a REHAB unit to help with my recovery. This, I didn't mind, as I know I have to learn to walk again...but I understood it to be a part of the hospital, so I nodded in agreement. On the next day, the Physical Therapist returned and with the aid of a walker, was able to take a few steps into the hallway and back. Great! At least, that's what I thought.
Later that day, the doctor came in and stated that he had recommended that I be SENT to a FACILITY for my recovery. When I asked what type of facility, he noted a convalescent or nursing facility as I needed pain meds while on my recovery, that I couldn't take care of myself.
Now....a little history of myself. Yes, I am in my late 50's, I have had grey (in my case, totally white) hair since I was 30. I work full-time, take care of a home complete with a husband and 2 small children, still do tent camping, hiking, fishing, gardening and anything else that suits my fancy! Just because I am in my 50's and have white hair DOESN'T MAKE ME OLD OR ELDERLY!
But....if you go to the hospital, I don't care if you are 30 with white hair...they treat you like you are so old, you are deaf and pitiful. So, going back to the story.....after the conversation with the doctor, a liason of the hospital came in with a list of 'homes' and explained to me, VERY CAREFULLY...."y o u w i l l n e e d t o h a v e a m e m b e r o f y o u r f a m i l y c h e c k t h e s e o u t ..."
O.K. That does it! The next doctor to arrive later was asked "Are you telling me that I am being sent to a home because I am on your pain meds?" He responded YES. I told him "fine...I won't take anymore!" and I didn't! The next morning, a different Physical Therapist arrived. I had moved myself into a chair prior to his arrival, and then we went into, and down the hall. The Therapist then asked me "Why are they sending you to a Rehab Facility...I think you can go home!" So, that was his official recommendation!
FINALLY! While going home was my preference, I knew it wouldn't be easy for my husband, but we both agreed my recovery would be more speedy with my family than with strangers.
What Do You Think?
Should a person who is in their 30's, 40's or 50's let their hair remain naturally grey/white?
To Dye or Not...
In conclusion...while my care was great, the one thing people don't need to speed recovery is to be told (or have it insinuated) that you are too old to do something. Often, aging is a frame of mind, and in a hospital ESPECIALLY, that frame of mind needs to be kept as active and positive as possible....FOR ANY AGE!
I keep my white hair by choice. I could dye it, but I personally have this thing about adding chemicals to my body that aren't absolutely necessary. Besides, I am still very active, and plan on being so again in the near future! My husband is many years older than I, but his hair is still black...does that make him younger?
Besides, I know people MUCH younger than me that I can work circles around. Am I disabled right now, yes. Will I be in a couple of months? I DON'T THINK SO! I plan on being out there this summer camping, fishing, hiking and playing with the kids.
If you really want to help someone in this type of situation, just help them. They will be greatful for the help, but don't belittle them in doing so. The mind is still active and good, as is the attitude. Your SUPPORT is the best thing you can give them!