They Pay Me Good Money

by Karen Grimord on September 11, 2007

I arrived at 8 this morning and left at 5:30 tonight. My back hurts and my feet are on fire. I think some of you know that I have a blown out disk and 2 herniated disks in my back but I am just muscle sore today. My feet hurt from being on them all day and the one that I had surgery on 3 times is swollen again BUT as I am typing this all I can think about is WOW! I feel good being here.

The morning was slow with patients coming in for duffel bags most of the morning. Most are leaving on Friday and are trying to get all their items packed and ready to go. A young woman that came in yesterday and got a back pack brought it back because it was dark blue not black and as many times as I have explained it to this group and as long as it has been on our web page, groups insist they know better and someone sent 4 large boxes of dark blue back packs and she was told it was out of regulation and so she could not carry it. What a waste of money! I ‘m sure the dark blue was 1 or 2 dollars cheaper and some one made a command decision to buy them. But why not spend the extra dollars or get a few less bags and have the troops be able to use them instead of having this poor girl have to listen to the fact that she was not in regulation 2 or 3 times before she could get back to us to change out the bag. I have said it over and over quality not quantity. We are here to fill their needs they are not here to fill our needs. (If you don’t get that statement send me a private email and I will explain it when I get back or another group member can).

I had a patient that came in this afternoon in quite a bit of pain from 4 broken ribs. He still insisted on packing his own bag. Until I told him they paid me good money to be here and help him and I did not want to lose my job. He was to say the least just a little high on drugs and said “Oh yes, ma’am ,I know how that can be” and so he let me help him. One of these days he will find out we are all volunteers, but it worked today and that is all that matters. I once cracked 1 rib and can’t imagine what 4 must feel like. Uggh!!

We had a 6’6” man come in this afternoon. I went to work finding size 14 shoes and 3x clothing. He was being so polite that I just had to break the ice. He was bald as bald can be so I asked him “Do you need a toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, shampoo or how about a HAIRBRUSH?!! His friend stopped and looked at him. I said, “OK, now I expected a little more of a reaction than that.” He said that was funny! He was not laughing or anything but he just kept saying, “That was funny!” At that moment a 3 star general walked in. He shook the hand of the patient I was helping and they were talking about the time at the hospital and if he was finding everything in the WWMC OK. He said “yes, sir.” He pointed at me and said to the bald 3 star, “this one just asked me if I wanted a hairbrush.” OK, you know I was hoping I would melt into the floor at this point but then in the same breath he told the general “I really needed that, she made me feel like I was really at home.” I was so embarrassed I am not sure what they talked about after that until the general came up and “coined” me after the colonel in charge of the WWMC told the general about my service to the WWMC for the last 3 years.

This afternoon they brought a bunch of boxes from the warehouse and so most of the afternoon was spent unpacking quilts, jackets, folding t-shirts and putting many more items away. Today I worked 9.5 hours with no lunch. Today was thanks to Evelyn Dittman and her contribution to my trip.

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