Heart of Oncology Nursing

Bill and Jean: A Lifetime Together

Tina Vallier

end-of-life care, hospice, chemotherapy, nurse–patient relationship
CJON 2015, 19(6), 776-776. DOI: 10.1188/15.CJON.776

I was preparing to educate a new patient about chemotherapy but, before I headed into the room we use for educating patients, I was greeted by the nurse who works with the oncologist. She said, “You are going to like this couple, kind of simple but really nice. Ask him about his surgery.” Okay, I think to myself, I cannot wait to hear this tale. I was expecting to hear about the hours and hours of surgery and the details of the intricate procedure performed to remove his extensive head and neck cancer. I walked into our education room and was greeted by a very slight older man with a big toothless smile and, alongside him, his graying wife, both with the same welcoming warmth. As the nurse suggested, I asked about the surgery before starting my chemotherapy education. I found myself amazed. Bill’s answer: “And you know my tongue was growing hair and I had to shave it off?” From that point on, I was in love with this couple.

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