How To Pass Time In Hospital - Part 2

Games are used as a tool to distract and amuse the patient, by a 10 year old!

This is a follow up article to our first visit when Gwen had lots of work done on her left foot including three nice green pins inserted into her toes! On this occasion her right foot was the target of the surgeon’s knife!

On this occasion things went less to plan (as they are wont to do when spending time in hospital) and so even we couldn’t resist the siren call of the TV and succumbed to the delights of watching England play the first half of their world cup game against Scotland before she was taken off into the operating theatre. I watched the second half alone but the theatre sister kept Gwen appraised of the score whilst they were waiting for the “block” (local anaesthetic) to take effect on her leg.
Playing Archaeology in hospital

Once I had recovered from the stress of England’s performance on the rugby pitch and Gwen had recovered from the sedation we felt up to playing a couple of games that were not too “taxing”. On this occasion we started with two games of Archaeology (possibly one of the smallest and lightest games we have). This is an interesting card game that deserves more use, although it is let down in my view by the somewhat bland artwork. True to form Gwen won the first game but I did manage to recover and win the second.

The fact that the left foot was still bandaged and pinned from last time meant she had to be able to control and put some weight on the right heel to be able to get out of bed and go home. A later slot on the surgeon’s list and the efficacy of the local anaesthetic made this challenging so by mid afternoon there was talk of her having to stay in for the night. When I returned from a trip home to get her some overnight gear the decision had been made that she would have to stay over so we moved onto San Juan, our main game on the last trip, and to my surprise I won this as well. The onset of tiredness at the end of a long day meant we only played one game before I left her to the ministrations of the night staff and the healing effects of a good night’s sleep.
Playing San Juan in hospital

As a postscript to this we had the pleasure (and I do mean pleasure) of looking after a friend’s 10 year daughter on the Monday (no schools as they were having an inset day) who acted as a brilliant and very welcome distraction from the discomfort (both feet are now in bandages with a total of 5 pins sticking out of her toes). Our young friend spent a good five or so hours playing games with Gwen – first a couple of games of Backgammon which she had never played before, then 3 games of Zooloretto and two of Small World.

With the aid of a young and enthusiastic practitioner (!) the games had once again proved their worth as a tool that can help in many situations; on this occasion a fun distraction to someone in significant discomfort.

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