I am politically active and had been looking forward to voting in the presidential election in New Hampshire for many, many months. When I was unexpectedly hospitalized two nights before the election, I became extremely concerned that I would not be able to cast my vote, something that was very important to me. My nurse, Dorothy Heinrich, went above and beyond to make sure that I was able to vote.
The day before the election Dorothy investigated getting me an absentee ballot or finding out if there was a way for me to vote from the hospital; unfortunately, there wasn’t. She assured me not to worry, and that she’d figure something out. The day of the election, she was able to arrange for me to leave the hospital for one hour, with a note from my internist, to go to the polls. She even tried calling the polling location in West Lebanon ahead of time to let them know I was on my way.
I had a procedure scheduled in one hour, but Dorothy quickly detached me from my IV and sent me on my way, gave me a huge smile, and told me how happy she was that I was getting to vote. She put so much time and energy into making this happen, I feel like she is incredibly deserving of recognition. Beyond all of this, at a time when I was very sick, she treated me with such kindness and compassion and was the most wonderful nurse you could imagine. She made me smile and took the time to talk to me when she came into my room. I am also incredibly grateful for the kindness and humor she showed my mom and boyfriend, who were constantly in my room with me.
Dorothy engaged us in conversations, told us stories, and made us all feel better. I have a great photograph of me lying in my hospital bed with a nose tube and an IV, with an NH ‘I voted’ sticker on my hospital gown. I am grinning and pointing at my sticker proudly. I am indebted to Dorothy for her help in getting me to the polls.