Sunday post-it 2/19/23-Barbara Billingsley

The post-it reads “Barbara Billingsley in Airplane!”

That’s it.

It’s a good thing I remember what I meant by that.

There is a scene in Airplane! that is two men who are in absolute distress, and a stewardess asking what is wrong.

Yes, stewardess. It is a 1980 movie.

But she can’t understand the lingo that the two men are speaking.

Barbara Billingsley comes up from behind her (for reference she played Mrs. June Cleaver on Leave it to Beaver). She identifies the lingo the two men are speaking as jive, and she speaks it. She then asks the men what is wrong. They tell her and she interprets for the stewardess, who rushes off to get medicine. Which Barbara interprets for them.

The men dismiss her, telling her that they understood the stewardess but not enough was being done. ; she does not take kindly to being dismissed by them when all she was doing was trying to help. She dismisses them in turn, telling them if they don’t want help, they won’t get help. This is done by spoofing June Cleaver’s squeaky clean image.

I see this so much in healthcare. Yes, things are frequently terrible. But there is only so much the nurses can do without an order, and more is asked of us, all the time. It is the creation of this gordian knot of need and being unable to offer everything that nurses are faced with every day.

Sometimes I would like to tell patients, when they are being unreasonable, that help is coming, but patience is required. We don’t have the option of telling patients and doctors that if they don’t want the help that is on offer, they aren’t going to get any help.

Patients, always take the helping hand when it is offered. It may not be what is wanted, but it may be the only way we can help. Because we may be constrained in waiting for a call back from a doctor.

We are working to solve the issue as fast as we can.

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