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I’m sad. Aling Marie, the old lady who helps sell flowers in church, doesn’t go to church anymore. I used to visit her every time I went home from duty in the hospital. She reminds me a lot of my grandmother, who passed away a few years ago.

Aling Marie has a condition which I suspect is deep vein thrombosis or DVT.  She often complains of pain on her right leg, which gets swollen from time to time.  She also has hypertension. She cannot afford to buy maintenance and pain medications, and barely earns enough to buy food. She simply relies on money handed to her by those who buy flowers (she does not own the flowers she sells, nor does she get any commission from selling them. She relies on the kindness of the buyers and other churchgoers). She has been told to get an ultrasound in order to correctly diagnose the DVT, but again, she cannot afford it. She has no children and no one to support her. She walks very, very slowly, with a lot of difficulty.  If a parishioner was not generous enough to buy her a cane, I don’t know how she would’ve gotten back and forth from her home to the church.

Despite her situation, she is always cheerful and is never afraid to share her blessings. When another parishioner gave her two rosary bracelets, she gave the other one to me, saying that she had been waiting for me to come by just for that.

Another time, she gave my mom a poster of Mother Mary. This generous quality always makes me think of my grandmother, who was sometimes too kind for her own good (I mean it in the best possible way, of course). I guess that’s why I’ve become somewhat attached to her.

Well, this is a perfect example of “transference.”  Transference is “the phenomenon whereby we unconsciously transfer feelings and attitudes from a person or situation in the past on to a person or situation in the present” (Patricia Hughs, Ian Kerr).  In nursing, we were taught that patients can experience transference towards their nurses. This is common especially in a hospital care setting. At the same time, nurses can also feel transference towards their patient, and we use a term called counter-transference to describe it. That’s what happened here, although Aling Marie is not really my patient.

I’m sad because ever since I started working for another hospital and in different hours from before, my visits became less frequent.  Today, I discovered that the church had removed the table and station where she usually sits to sell flowers.  It’s been a couple of months since I last saw her, so I’m a little worried.  I hope she’s okay and comes back soon.  Say a prayer for her.  Thanks.

Hi.


This is the personal blog of teskaraptor aka bananatree. Yes that's me, a 20-something nurse working in the IT field.
If you ask me to choose one word to describe myself, I would choose "weird."


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