Degrees of Resemblance

My blogfriend Susie over at What was I Thinking gives a nice description of how she seems to look like someone else.  She asks if anyone else ever gets that.

Well, until I gained weight at least, I was mistaken for someone else quite often.  I have that kind of face, I guess.  I’m not on the receiving end of such comments lately.
Then again, I haven’t been out and about too much the last year or so.  And I no longer live in the ol’ hometown.

While reading along on Susie’s post, an episode jumped to the forefront of my mind about when my face caused a connection for someone else.

It happened the summer after my first son came along.

I was back to working as an LPN, in the very same hospital where I was born, and had done most of my clinicals 5 years before.
Being a mom and a nurse doing a probationary period was not easy for me.  It didn’t help that I was only a week on each wing so I could ‘get the feel’ of the place.

It so happened that I was working the Med Cart, on a floor where the Ward Clerk had poor penmanship and a slightly different “system” than any other I had been on so far.
I was struggling to keep up with what I needed to do.
I was feeling overwhelmed and under-experienced.

I pushed the cart into a 4-bed ward.  Bed 1 was on the right, first in the door.  I got her medicine ready.
Meanwhile, the woman from Bed 4, to the left of the door, came out of the bathroom.
She looked over at me and SHREEEKED.  I mean, everybody else in sight and hearing thought she had stepped on a nail or something.  An Aide came jogging over from the room kitty-corner.

The patient sat down on the bed quite quickly.
I shoved shut all the drawers on the med cart to lock it.  One action was stressed over and over, Never Leave the Drug Cart Open and available for drugs to be stolen.  What kind of presence of mind does that?  Automatic response.

I rushed over to her side.

“Ma’am, Ma’am, What is the Matter?”  I didn’t even know her name or medical problem, that’s how new I was.

The Aide came through the door and rushed over with questions pouring out of her mouth.

The patient could not talk for a minute.  I began checking for symptoms of a stroke, but she pushed me away.

Finally, she found her voice.

“You have to be related to Kerma or Sara”, she said.

I straightened up, and took a half step back.
The CNA looked confused.

A look of irritation must have crossed my face
—very un-nurse-like of me.
I was supposed to be in control of emergency situations.
But I sensed I had found a morsel of belonging there in that room.

“Kerma is my mother, Sara is my aunt” was my answer.

“I knew it I knew it I knew it” was her response.
“You look just like them.”

It seems she had grown up on the same street as my mother’s family of 8 siblings.  They all went to the same schools, etc.  And everybody could tell they were all related.  I was the age now that my mother was the last time she had seen her.  And Wow, did I EVER look like her.

The Aide now seemed out-of-sorts that all this ruckus had been caused because of genetics and facial structure.

I told the patient I had to get going with the Med Cart, but I would give my mom a Hello from her.  She asked if our phone number was the same as in the book.  When I went by later, she was telling my mom all about how she recognized her daughter.  Before you ask,  after all these years, I don’t remember the name of the woman.  She was my mother’s friend, not likely to be mine after scaring me out of my socks.

Our most recent picture of me and my mom and youngest sister
in Danna’s dining room

Diane Kerma Danna May 2006

decide for yourself about how we look

~~love and Huggs, Diane

This entry was posted in Family. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Degrees of Resemblance