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Joan Knows: Wishing flood victims well

With apologies to the true victims of the Flood of 2013, it may be said that my situation changed abruptly due to a major collection of fluid – in my lungs! Early thoughts turned to pneumonia, but in any case it was destination Delnor from where this is written on a Wednesday afternoon.

My friends and family will affirm that I have a strong tendency to be hypercritical, but at this point in time I am well satisfied and appreciative of the care rendered in the last few days.

Wait! As a retired health professional who wrote a doctoral dissertation on patient care advocacy and related communication issues, there’s no turning off my need to say a few things from that self-created soap box. Besides, it’s all pretty much good news and in the tradition of the dearly departed Roger Ebert, there are some thumbs up and thumbs down to report.

First, three cheers for the paramedics. I always appreciate their capacity to keep a straight face no matter what crisis of my own doing arises. Thanks, gentlemen, for the swift ride.

I think we all have an appreciation for those who are action-oriented, problem-solving, careful listeners who seem to value the relationship.

Three cheers and two thumbs up to Dr. Shah, Kelly, Emily, Meredith, Kai, Steph, Kaeley, Amy, Renee and that friendly gal Lorrie for room service kept hot and served with a smile.  

Every system has those inside-the-box people who find comfort and satisfaction in traditions, policies and rituals.

Some day I will tell the whole long story of how it took three days to get a trapeze. No, not for acrobatics but for leverage in moving the old paralyzed legs.  

Day after day I  heard more than a dozen times, “We haven’t used one in years,” which soon twisted in to being MY problem.

As I sit here beside the bed I look at the steel structure, constructed from many pieces, that would be a marvel to an ancient Egyptian hoping to hoist a heavy load (that would be me!).  

“You got YOUR trapeze,” I was told.  

Does that mean I get to keep it? Maybe there is a museum of leeches and other outworn artifacts somewhere in the basement?

To be helpful to others who are challenged by a health care system – try some fresh remedies. For example, “emergency” does not mean “fast;” excellence is a goal, not a guarantee; and be wise to say good things because you never know when there might be a return visit.

Thanks, again, for doing your best to meet my needs.  

I hope my sometimes grouchy mood did not override my solid satisfaction, and, now, I am off to be with my buddies at Pineview.  

I promise to concentrate on the fine things, such as the deer outside the window, the comradeship and the agenda to get back home on the range.

Wow, I just saw some sunshine (it is noon on April 24). I am no longer in a grouchy mood, and starting to look ahead. How about you?

P.S. Try not to order the strawberry shortcake, there’s only one slice, and it’s not even a complete strawberry.  

• Joan Arteberry is a long-time resident of St. Charles. Her columns are featured in the Kane County Chronicle’s Neighbors section every other Friday. Write to her at

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