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Very ill friend hospital visit how to be helpful and what to take?

(8 Posts)
Meanderer Tue 15-Apr-14 13:33:12

Hi...I have a friend who is seriously ill and facing major surgery to remove stomach and part of colon, possibly cancer though she doesn't know yet, awaiting biopsy. She's being put on a feeding tube. I'm hoping to visit her in the next couple of days but wondering what to aren't allowed and she can't eat..she's also feeling sick and in pain a lot of the time. Anyone have any ideas how I can do more than just turn up..I know that's good in itself but would love to feel I can do more..

HazeltheMcWitch Tue 15-Apr-14 13:38:39

IS she allowed any liquids do you know? If so, a pack of bendy straws, as it is an arse having to pick up a heavy cup all the time, and the straws always fall on the floor. Ooh, also, that new squeezy squash thing, which is very concentrated so very small, and can turn boring water into something more interesting.

Things I liked when in hosp: lip balm, as it gets really dry, esp if she cannot eat and drink. Chewing gum/sucky sweets if allowed. Hand cream, maybe nail stuff if allowed.

Does she have kindle, tablet etc? If so, vouchers for spendy things for Kindle or iTunes or Google Play might be good, so she can watch films, read books etc. But I also liked puzzle books for those moments when I could not manage to concentrate on a film or a book (or even a magazine), and all I could do was a word search or similar.

Hope it all goes as well as it can, and that she is soon on the road to recovery.

dunsborough Tue 15-Apr-14 13:43:41

I agree. A good book or a pile of magazines would be useful.

Also a nice card, letting her know you are thinking of her.

Meanderer Tue 15-Apr-14 13:47:10

Hazel those are some lovely ideas, thank you! Lipbalm and hand cream I can deffo do and some straws..not sure whether she's allowed liquids. Will take some herbal t bags in and some crystallised ginger to suck on. She's only in her early 40s it's frickin rubbish this is happening, I keep thinking how frightened I would be if it were me.

LittleMissDisorganized Tue 15-Apr-14 13:49:20

2 years ago I spent 3 weeks in ITU and a further 7 weeks in hospital.
The things that helped at the beginning were the simplest things - the nurses would read me the cards when I was really struggling, hand cream and moisturiser, a couple of hairbands, etc.
Once I was a bit more with it(!) - books/magazines - yes but not too many. A notebook (maybe just me but I wrote lists - lists of things I'd do when I got home, etc, all kinds of lists, and menus!), puzzle books, offer to put some money on her TV card (most hospitals charge you, so a couple of days tv is nice) a little fan, earplugs (! - really) then once she can eat little treats, and even seasoning (brown sauce, mayonnaise, etc - the food is the blandest possible).

But bringing yourself is wonderful. My husband and friends were amazing. And try not to complain about the parking too much!!

Meanderer Tue 15-Apr-14 13:49:46

Yes duns borough I thought of taking a lovely picture to look at...but imagine the side table gets cluttered after a few days! Is blu tack allowed do you know to stick pictures on her bedside cabinet maybe?

bouncinbean Tue 15-Apr-14 13:54:04

Go to a big newsagent and get a variety of magazines on allsorts of topics - say celebrity, gardening, news/economy, local area, home, puzzles etc. Can be easier to dip in and out of than a book if she's not feeling great. Did this for my neighbour and was much appreciated over flowers and chocs that she couldn't eat...

mice Tue 15-Apr-14 14:01:49

One of the nicest things I received when I was ill and in hospital for a while last year was body lotion. I had the time to rub it in for once, it smelt lovely and my skin was very dry from the warm atmosphere. Anything non food related was great as the thought of eating made me feel worse!

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