There is one complication of being a nurse in a DGH ( district general hospital) and that is you always risk looking after someone that you know.
Over my few years in ITU I am unhappy to say that a few familiar faces have been admitted, and every time it happens I generally make sure that I look after someone else.
It's easier all round if I can be supportive without doing hands on care.
Anyhow ,On my last shift, the lady two beds away from my patient turned out to be someone I have known for many years. Usually robust and jovial , she looked grey and frail in bed, but I noticed that she was holding the hand of her husband who looked every inch of his 80 years., in a very firm grip
I was suddenly reminded of a verse in the 18th century poem " Darby & Joan" by St John Honeywood( a poem that my old tutor in psychiatric often referred to
It's a privilege to be able to witness these sweet little relationship moments, but they are often quite difficult to watch. Such devotion in those twilight years by nature of the beast always leads to one partner being left alone at some final stage.
ITU, Darby & Joan, ...all this came to mind last night when I was locking up he hens for the night.
For just by accident, I happened to look up into the branches of the beech tree that over hangs the field from the old Church yard and there cuddled up side by side on a high branch was the legbar cockerel and hen who were dropped off a week of so ago.
The hen had been bedded down with the rest of the hens but had decided to join her cockerel for the night up in the tree.
Cockerel and hen
Darby and Joan
It's what we all want for ourselves, but one that probably terrifies the bejesus out of us all