The hospital resort

I have always considered hospitals as my second home. Kind of like a holiday resort of sorts. People are always friendly to you, even more so if you are friendly back, you get free food delivered to your bed, have a lot of time to think about life and can meet a wide variety of people during your stay.

The Resort

Personally, I have been to this holiday resort many many times, during fun and rough patches of life and for different periods of stay. The longest being (only) five weeks for the leg incident and once or twice just for the night to get the right meds in me or for surveillance purposes.

Going to hospital as a result of partying too hard or while playing sport when your blood is four times thinner than the average person’s probably falls into the “serves you right” category. But I’ve also had to go in times that conflicted with an Oxford study course to help with the upcoming final; I had to study under the effects of strong painkillers in a hospital bed and write a theatre piece worth 25% of my final theatre grade during this time. Definitely a time I felt hard done by.

Valuing hospitals

Nevertheless, I’ve never quite understood when people say they dislike hospitals. In my mind this has always come down to their visits being voluntary; to see a loved one in a bad state, which I am sure can be mortifying. Maybe even one or two bad experiences as a patient or all the sickly people… But is that really worth the hatred towards hospitals?

After all, if you have ever really had to go to hospital and can reflect back on it now, it means YOU ARE ALIVE and most likely due to said visit to this holiday resort. I see hospitals as a place of life, without which I certainly wouldn’t be able to write this blog. I feel that nurses and doctors treat me differently to most other patients because I don’t dislike the place, I value them for their profession as well as a human being, some patients do neither. I recommend to adopt this approach.

Finding a downside

However, during my most recent visit to the hospital when I had the Noro virus (very bad stomach bug which comes and goes quicker than they can test for it) something dawned on me. Hospital is only good if it is hectic, staff-packed and life threatening. On this occasion I had been puking most the night before, it got a bit better during the day but then an excruciating bursting pain in my upper stomach region got the best of me and I was forced to go to hospital from the pain, let alone the thought of what could be wrong inside.

After a feverous night and a lot of meds and fluids given to me through an IV, I felt quite alright the next morning, hoping I could go home. Watching the second hand of the clock directly in front of me ticking away, I soon realised how frustrating time itself was going to be. They just wanted to check one more thing, whether my stomach bug had had any effects on my mechanical heart valve. Later I was told I’d have to wait five days due to my blood being too thin for the procedure and the unfortunate timing of the worldwide holiday firework festival known as New Year’s Eve. (both NYE and NYD are holidays in Germany)

Morning walk in the hospital park during the winter in Munich.

Morning walk in the hospital park during the winter in Munich.

This was such a new feeling for me. Boredom at a hospital, you ask? Yes. Apart from the 1-2 day trips all my other visits had been full of action, blood squirting, 38.8°C+ (approx 102°F) fevers over long periods of time, multiple operations, life-saving decisions, doctors on their game, drugs and pain. Never once thought about boredom, everything else was too tiring. During this time, I did start to appreciate the beautiful scenary around the hospital, especially with its wintery shade.

Boredom diary entry

In life you often feel you never have enough time for anything, here is where all that time escapes to. I’ve tried to sleep as much as I can and still the hours don’t pass by quick enough. Due to the virus I have I told my friends not to visit. I have been stuck here for four days just doing nothing but eating, sleeping and getting bored of ALL the games on my mobile that I used to think enjoyable.

I was in solitary confinement for two days to not infect anyone else. Seeing a masked up face for 5 seconds as they brought me food, gave me a drip or took blood was the best form of human contact I had. I was lonely. My girlfriend has been kind enough to visit twice, it goes by so much quicker with her. I still have two days left until the procedure to find out what is wrong with me. The highlight today will be at midnight when I can hopefully see all the fireworks from the tenth floor, it is agonising to think how many hours I have to wait for that. Yay, more waiting

Testing the #fireworks at #hospital lol

Ein von Sebastian M (@smuhlhaus) gepostetes Foto am

After all those days of wait, the doctors stuck a tube down my throat (transesophageal echocardiogram) to find out there was nothing wrong with my heart valve, despite them having said there was something peculiar attached the the valve just a few days before. Four days wasted, but still worth the wait as the medical team were hinting to an eight-week hospital-ridden antibiotic therapy or another imminent heart operation if their suspicions materialised. I did not pull the short straw.

These are all only my own thoughts based on my experiences at hospital. I don’t mean to offend anyone, and please do write to me if you have any similar or different experiences you want to share, kind or scathing remarks. :)

p.s. The view from the top floor of the hospital on New Year’s Eve was amazing. I ended up watching the fireworks with a couple of doctors.


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