The DAISY Team Award is designed to honor the collaboration by two or more people led by a nurse, who identify and meet patients' and families’ needs by going above and beyond the traditional role of nursing.
The story I want to share is about a patient and the wish to witness her daughter's wedding. The patient was transferred from another hospital with a lot of co-morbidities. She had a planned surgery at another hospital and developed multiple complications, such as intra-abdominal abscesses, fistulas, ostomies, abdominal wound vac, complex wound care then septic shock. She was very ill. As we cared for her, she became very teary-eyed and said, "I hope I live to see my only child, my daughter, get married." The wedding was planned in the fall and this was July. Her daughter was present and heard her mother's wishes. The doctor had planned a family meeting to discuss the plan of care regarding goals of care for the patient. The patient had a change in her condition and was deteriorating. The daughter, who was very concerned over her mother, asked if she could have a bedside wedding. She wanted to be married at her mother's bedside and wanted her mother to be a part of the big day. We spoke with management team Kristen Foulk NM and Amanda Latina ANM and permission was given to use the patient's room. The wedding was going to be in two days. The buzz was all over the TSU unit, the staff was excited, and everyone wanted to help or assist. Our goal was to make this as beautiful and special as we could. We offered to buy decorations and decorate, and the bride stated she has already done this with the help of the groom and her mother's partner. The bride's only wish from TSU staff was that her mother be pampered- bathed, hair washed, nails painted and make-up applied. We were on it. The mother of the bride dress was absolutely beautiful and brought in and, due to the complex wound care, we decided with the bride and mother of the bride (patient) that the dress be laid over the hospital gown. The daughter (bride) loved this idea and said in the fall she can wear it again to renew her vows at the wedding. The medical equipment that was not being used was removed from the room. The other equipment was turned so not to be in pictures. The room was extra cleaned.
The bride planned the impromptu wedding. I was totally amazed she had all the decorations planned such as silk rose petals, battery-operated candle lights, music and the most beautiful silk flowers for a wedding bouquet. She had a lovely silk flower for her mother's dress. She told me that her father and mother were divorced, but he would give her away and that she had her own pastor to officiate the wedding ceremony.
She had already sent out invitations for the fall wedding, but she decided to keep this date and renew their vows on this date for everyone else. As for the wedding, it was going to be small and private, but elegant for the bride, groom, her mother and partner, father and her 3 adopted children. As the sermon was being conducted, you could not help but feel so proud. There was both laughter and tears and the patient maintained her amazing personality - smiling, crying and blowing kisses to everyone involved. Her daughter was a beautiful bride. The groom was handsome. The mother of the bride (our patient) was just beaming with pride, joy, and love for her daughter and son-in-law. They were a stunning newly married couple.
We decided to give them family privacy time. I felt so blessed to be a part of such a beautiful event. Our unit was so proud. It was an amazing way to celebrate a patient's wish to see her daughter be married.
The patient was at Christiana Care for quite some time. She was eventually transferred to a non-step down unit and then discharged to a rehab center. She became well enough to attend her daughter's renewal of vows wedding.