Monday, May 6, 2013

Just A Bit Of Anxiety?

He is screaming...all the way xown the hall. A maniacal effort to escape this treatment once again, in a plsce that isn't "Home".

This young boy is taken back to his room, but not without a huge brawl. Kicking, screaming, "WHY DO YOU HATE ME?!?!?!?!" filling the halls. His chariot awaits (a straight and narrow cot with sheets of sandpaper) and once again, wheeled away.

Residents in children's hospital don't lower their voices in the hallway. It's taken for granted that we shouldn't understand. But as soon as I found someone who would tell me, I asked.

The answer I was given was that he had a diagnosis called "Oppositional Defiant Disorder". He refused to speak at times, and that episode was common for him. They provided Ativan and IV pain meds available via PCA...the flippant "professional" remarked: "Chemo PROBABLY is uncomfortable. But they way he behaves is unacceptable..."

After an the infusion, the boy I witnessed resisting a forest of hands that threatened to swallow him alive arrives seemingly paralyzed from fatigue and a trail of tears streaking his cheeks. He would refuse to eat or talk...although he could.  I recognize the terror of just KNOWING you may be hurt in some way, that by that type of force they also steal your words...but torment you. You don't have words but they ask a million times. Then YOU are the one who is non-compliant.

He had been diagnosed with ODD before Hodgkins Lymohoma. But nurses and residents wore him down. No one ever willing to sit and the soul and heart kf that little 14 year old.

Since he was a psych patient first...the cancer didn't seem toy matter. He was alone frequently. The pain from the treatments just...never became addressed.

One day his eyes became hollow.. this wasn't the same boy I knew. There was no more running and much praise for being cooperative...

He died that night. Turns out between the chemo and other treatments they wiped out too many "good cells" (which is done...but he had lost too many). Many things were ignored...because he had OppositionAl Defiant Disorder, and this was expected behavior.


Left us in 2007. The nurses were hysterical with grief. I pray they no longer write off behavior as deviant or "bad". Psych issues are ignored most of the time in hospitals. And for childree left to themselves...

I pray medical professionals will help in all aspects of a person on day...outside all labels. These children are people first and always.

With love, K

From your parakeet.

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