Especially those in stress, illness and crisis.
My speciality has always been rehabilitation, where encouragement, occasional bullying and humour was the order of the day.
Yesterday a friend from the village asked my advice.
Her elderly mother had been poorly and after treatment had retired to her bed.
As we all know Bedrest in the elderly can be a one way ticket and so I offered to give her a pep talk.
I used the old " smoke and mirror" approach
I took along my old sphygmomanometer and after a bit of banter I checked her pulse and blood pressure and asked questions about tablets and pain. I was courteous but relaxed and we laughed with my face level with hers before I finally suggested that she needed to sit out of bed at least every morning and every afternoon .
She agreed without hesitation .
It must have been just a tad galling for the patient's daughter who had spent hours cajoling her mother into activity to finally see her move her arse off the bed but the outcome was worth it, with everyone happy.
I was reminded of a teenage paraplegic patient from long ago who refused to get into his wheelchair for the very first time. His named nurse, who was a blowsy, big busted and big hearted girl called Ruth had approached the situation appropriately for a while. She had sat the patient up in bed over a few days, explained the procedure of getting up, listened to the patient's fears and supported his anxiety and had used a former patient who was already up his his wheelchair as a peer support but the boy was steadfast in his refusal to get up.
Ruth decided to use a more unorthodox method of rehab.
She pushed her cleavage to its max and vamped things up with wry smile.
A bit of harmless flirting, did the trick as the proximity of a straining bust, the threat of a less than motherly hug had the boy calling out to me with a resigned and playful "okok get me up get me up...get me out of here"!
Like I said. Smoke and mirrors....smoke and mirrors.....
And a small bunch of flowers from the daughter , delivered last night, proved that smoke and mirrors do work when things need to get done.