I know I've been posting exclusively about the hurricane for the last week or so, but I promise I won't dwell on it much longer. There is just one story I wanted to share with you about the effects of the flood that I never even would have realized if it wasn't for my job...
On the day the hurricane hit my husband was out in the flood waters wearing a wet suit and straddling a boat as he rescued at least a dozen people, young and very old, from the raging waters. They were plucked from homes that now are either rubble, moved from their foundations, or filled with mud. In short, they can't go back home....
But they have to go somewhere.
The day after the storm hit I was at work. It had been a long day, per usual lately. My growing belly and swelling feet do not make an eight hour shift very easy. Waddling, as I literally do now, up and down the hallway after patients is exceedingly tiresome, so when my day came to an end I was unbelievably grateful to head home and fall into the comfy cushions on the couch. As soon as I did my phone rang....
I answered the phone and recognized the voice on the other end. It was work. I thought they were calling me back. Perhaps they noticed something I had forgotten to do or had a question about something else. Turns out that was not the case at all. What they did want was for me to come in right away. There was something unusual unfolding there. Nine emergent admissions.
You have no idea how many admissions that is to get in an afternoon. Or maybe you do and you're thinking the same thing I did.... holy cow.
So, I drudged my exhausted butt back to work to help put together all the paperwork and charts for these emergency admissions. Never before had the facility had that many admissions in one day. So, I wondered what caused such a mass of people to flock to the doors all of a sudden? Then I remembered, as I was doing the charts and seeing where these new residents were from, the hurricane was to blame.
People who were displaced by the floods, including some who were actually rescued by my husband, had no where else to go and were brought to our doors. Some didn't even have more than a few articles of clothing. Others had been emergently air lifted from some of the towns that were literally isolated from the rest of the world during the hurricane due to their health concerns and then brought to my facility.
In all the emergencies I have been a part of over the years I never knew how far reaching the effects could be. Who knew where the people displaced ended up? I had never given it consideration before the moment they became my patients, but now I know. Its crazy to think that someone my husband rescued is now in my care, too. That's what I call full circle.