Saturday, February 24, 2007

In Case of Emergency

Here's something you need to know if you're living with very old people:

They don't know that they're supposed to call 9-1-1 immediately in a medical emergency.

I'm probably overgeneralizing. Maybe it's just MY grandparents, because they grew up as migrant farm workers with very little formal education. Maybe it's generational (no phones when they were kids, no 911 when they were raising kids), maybe it's because when they were young only rich people could call medics to come to the house, maybe it's just that they're senile.

Just please, explain this to them, and not just once in a while, I mean weekly: if there's a medical emergency, call 911 immediately. Don't try and revive the person yourself, don't wait a while and see if he gets better, don't half-assedly attempt to wake up someone else in the house, don't call the neighbors or the relatives and ask THEM to call an ambulance. Grandma, if something is wrong, don't wait. Call 911, and do it fast.

Grandpa will never be the same. His arm is dead, his leg is partly paralyzed, his face is stuck, he falls asleep for fifteen minutes and thinks a whole day has passed.

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