Ghost or Angel?
Robyn, Colorado, USA
Ifeel the need to give a little bit of background in order for this story to make sense.
I work in a small psychiatric hospital and have seen, felt and heard a number of "out of the ordinary" things. I am not the only one. I work the night shift and there are three staff members that work this shift (one nurse and two psychiatric technicians). I am one of the two.
We work with a variety of patients who, for one reason or another, are unable to be safe with themselves, others, or both. The ghost/angel story I have to tell surrounds a man who was detoxing from alcohol. I was keeping a close eye on this man as his behaviour was very different from the night before. He was talking to himself, yelling that," A man is in my room!" and unable to use his urinal. In fact, he didn't even recognize what a urinal was. It was clear to me that his confusion was becoming worse but this is not particularly unusual for patients that are having a difficult detox. In the mean time, the two other staff members that I work with were working on being able to take the patient's blood sugar readings later in the morning. The nurse found, when she came on to the night shift, that the machine used to take these readings was not working and that she had no blood sugar strips.
She called the main hospital for the strips, which she insisted be brought over by taxi. She recalls not having a second thought about doing this even though the strips could have been brought over in the morning by the hospital courier. At the same time, our other tech who had a good understanding of machines, fixed the glucometer with, of all things, a paper clip. This allowed the battery to provide power to the machine (bear with me as this becomes important). They then tested the machine with the necessary solutions and it joyfully passed. At this time, I came into the nurses station to report the increasingly bizarre behaviour of the patient. The nurse was sharing with us that we should check his blood sugar as the patient was diabetic and that low blood sugar often causes similar changes in mental status that detoxing does. While she was talking with us, we heard three rapid, distinct knocks at the door. We all looked at the door. Glass windows surround the door so that we may closely observe the patients that are the greatest risks. None of us could see anyone. The other tech I work with said, "Oh it's just the ghost playing with us." (As I said earlier we have become used to strange occurrences and often ignore them.) For some reason, I felt like the knocks were a warning. I opened the door and immediately checked on the patient we were just discussing. He was pointing to the corner of the room and said, "He's right there!" Now being used to dealing with patients that hallucinate you would think that this would be no big deal to me. Wrong! It was a big deal because I saw the fiery, bluish outline of a tall figure in the corner of the room. Without telling the nurse what I saw I told her we needed to take his blood sugar. I feel like there was no thought involved with this. She was already preparing to do so. It was dangerously low and we called an ambulance to have him transported to the main medical hospital. While waiting for the ambulance, we were attempting to give the patient some sugar water to boost his blood sugar. (We were out of juice.) Initially he was refusing. As I stood there, I saw a hand gently place itself atop the patient's hand. It looked kind of like the bluish flame that you might see on a gas stove. All I saw was the hand. My heart was pounding frantically and I felt like I was in "its" way. I immediately stepped back. The patient's eyes widened staring at the hand on his. The other tech that was in the room did not see anything. I knew this as he kept saying, "What? What's wrong?" I looked at the patient and said (again without thought), "Your guardian angel is here. He wants you to drink that." The patient for the first time that night laughed and drank the water. Not long after, the ambulance arrived and quickly transported the patient to the E.R. The E.R. doctor informed us with a blood sugar as low as his he could have easily gone into a coma.
After the patient left, we all sat together in the nurses station, wide eyed and silent for a few minutes. When we began to share our feelings of the entire experience, we realized that there was something very special there helping the patient and us as well. I believe it's called "synchronicity"; without the nurse paying immediate attention to the blood sugar equipment, without the tech being able to fix the equipment, without me observing the patient and some very special "cues", who knows what might have happened. There's no doubt in my mind that we all had help from the "other side".
The patient, by the way, was stabilized and last I heard, is doing very well. Thanks for allowing me to share this longwinded story.