Last night, I was able to go advocate for a friend. Another member of the support group took her to the hospital, and I stayed with her until she was admitted. It was quite the wait, and I slept in (oops!) but it was totally worth it.
I can’t stress enough how important satellite support groups are. Satellite support groups are support groups that are basically in the middle of nowhere. The young lady I went to the hospital with last night was only able to seek the help she needed because there was someone to go with her. This wouldn’t have been possible without the support group I am a member of. She looked it up when she moved to the area one week ago. She showed up to this week’s meeting and it was obvious to our experienced eyes that this lady needed to go to the hospital. She was considerate enough to let the meeting come to an end before accepting a ride, but I am glad she went.
Some of the staff were surprised to see me again so soon. In fact, more than once, I was mistaken for the patient before any particular staff member oriented themselves. I took it in stride, and explained that I was there as peer support, and as an advocate to make sure she was able to get the care she needed. The staff, in return, took it in stride. I was glad that the stay was as quick as it was at the emergency room, but I almost wish it had gone on a little longer. This is because I was able to absorb more information as the clinicians and doctors explained what was going to happen, and what choices were available for the future.
Some of you may be wondering how my girlfriend felt about me spending the evening at the hospital with another woman. But she totally understood that this was something that needed to be done, and right then, and that I was the best person to do it.
I can’t say it was the best way to spend Valentine’s Day evening. However, love comes in many forms, and I couldn’t ignore what my heart was telling me to do. I am glad I did what I did, and that the young lady was able to start getting the help she needed. I hope to visit her in the next few days. I will keep you all updated. I love you all.