The title itself says so much. I hate hospitals. I really do. I’ve had my share of coming and going through a hospital especially this past four years. It started with my grandmother (she’s not on earth anymore, by the way) and now with my grandfather.
We’re not that rich so we can’t really afford expensive privileges when it comes to hospital services. A clean room shared with other people is the kind of room we usually avail every time someone gets hospitalized. Our Green Card and PhilHealth Card is also very useful but I have to admit that it’s not enough.
When my grandmother was admitted to the ICU, I never got to see her. My father did not wish for my sister and I to see her like that. But I regretted that day because I never really knew that that was the last day I could possibly see her.
My grandfather’s condition was not different from my grandmother’s. Just last year he was almost taken away from us. My family had to go back and forth to the hospital, taking shifts in taking care of him.
Yesterday when I went to him, he was in the emergency room. He was lying in a gurney. I was surprised to see him there and not in a room. He’s sick, right? So he should be in a room. I asked my cousin the reason why he’s not in one and he said that there’s no room available. So we had to camp out in the emergency room beside him.
A little while later, this guy lying beside my grandfather asked a nurse for a plastic bag where he can spit his phlegm. This guy was stabbed by his wife on the chest. I just don’t know the whole story. They were having problems, that’s obvious. Anyway, I was looking at the nurse because I do not really want to look anywhere else. The hospital was depressing. Seeing my grandfather there was more depressing. The nurse went to the nearest trashcan and fished out a plastic bag and handed it to the man. I can’t believe he did that! He’s a nurse! Sanitation is supposed to be his priority and he had to go and give the guy a plastic bag he took from the trash! God, even I wont do that. And what about his hands? He put it inside a dirty can and then he has to go around tending to other patients without washing his hands. He’s going to spread germs around.
Later, when my grandfather was running his tests, there was this pregnant woman who was wheeled into the emergency room. And a little while later, I could hear her screaming and all those disturbing noises a woman makes when she’s delivering a baby. The doctor was murmuring things and I could hear a woman’s voice, probably her mother, soothing her with gentle words. Really, I think the whole room was listening to them. The screaming goes on and on and then I hear it. It was one of those things you hear on television that you wish you will never hear in real life. The irritating screech of the machine telling you that the heart’s not working anymore. It was like a scene taken out of a movie. The woman’s mother started calling out her name and then the baby cried. But a few hours later, whispers in the emergency room said that the baby did not make it. I felt sad about that. How short the baby had on earth and still he did not see how beautifully disastrous our world is.
I hate hospitals. I hate how they smell. I hate how the nurses smile at you as if everything’s okay. I also hate how very ignorant they are when it comes to their patients. I hate the white walls and the uncomfortable seats and the long tubes of dextrose every patient seem to wear on their wrists. I hate the doctors who see every patient as if they are business ventures. Like they can string out money from each patient if they only prolong his healing process. I hate it, I hate it. I. HATE. IT.
If I can have my way, I wouldn’t step foot in any hospital ever again. But I have to. Even though it seems like it, I’m not losing faith in humanity. I believe there are nurses out there who will give clean plastic bags to patients who ask for it. I believe that babies are born for a reason and people also die for another reason. I believe that doctors will help out without looking for ways to earn more money in the process. I believe in humanity and compassion and hope and love. Underneath the ugly surface, there will always be beauty if you dig deep enough.
But right now I have to be content with what I have.
And right now someone needs me to take care of him.