A friend of mine posed an interesting question after a recent visit to the hospital for a parent who was having a procedure. She asked me, “Wouldn’t it be cool if they had spa treatments or hot cocoa for patient families while you wait?” I thought, “Hmmm… you may be on to something.”
Having spent time in the waiting room more often than I have ever wanted to, I said this sounds like a concierge type of service. At resorts a concierge typically assists guests by performing various tasks such as making restaurant reservations, booking hotels, arranging for spa services, booking transportation like taxi, limousines, valet parking.
But wait…did you know that some hospitals and medical facilities offer this type of services to their patients and employees??? This is an excellent way to allow caregivers to help the patient focus on healing while other things are being handled. Check your local hospital to see if they do! Some offer premium ala carte services for a fee and others offer concierge services as part of their patient care. I’d say that it would definitely be well worth it to use these services if they are available to you. I mean who wouldn’t love to have an hour massage to help ease anxiety felt during your wait time while a loved one is in surgery. That would calm some of the nerves down now wouldn’t it? I think this would be great if all hospitals offered concierge services to their patients and their families! A growing number of facilities are now providing this type of self-care.
In case your local hospital doesn’t offer these services, you can be in charge of your own self-care while you are spending some time in a hospital waiting room. So – What can you do?
- Bring Healthy Snacks – Trail mix, nuts, and fresh fruit make good easy to carry light weight healthy snacks that can be filling and tide you over while you wait. Be careful not to overindulge in comforting sugary snacks as it may temporarily be tasty on the lips but permanent on the hips. Caregivers beware.
- Drink lots of water – Be sure to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and resist the urge to reach for sugary sodas and juices available in the cafe. Most offer other healthy green juice options too.
- Read a book – You are probably thinking, I can’t sit still to read. I actually find reading very calming and it allows me to focus less on what might be weighing on my mind. I carry my trusty Kindle. It allows you to bring along all of your favorite books and magazines. It’s compact and easy to carry!
- Be sure to wear comfy clothes and shoes. You may be at the hospital for hours. Try not to be stationary. Be sure to get up and walk around the hospital grounds and burn off some of that nervous energy and get the blood circulating. Find comfort that God has your loved one in his hands and He will take care of them.
- Bring a charger for your phone. Use your smartphone as a handy device that can allow you to catch up on streaming shows, movies, or you can just call someone to chat.
- If you can, bring a supportive friend and have lunch. It helps to keep your mind off the wait.
I know that it can be nerve racking to sit in the hospital waiting room while your loved one is having surgery. Just remember to breathe, take a walk and trust that God’s got it under control. To get prepared, think about what you can bring with you on your visit to make you feel more comfortable. Please feel free to share what has helped you during a hospital visit or if you have any ideas, please leave a comment.