Discussion Essay

Millie Larsen is an 84-year-old Caucasian female who lives alone in a small home. Her husband Harold passed away a year ago and she has a cat, Snuggles, who is very important to her. Millie has one daughter, Dina Olsen, who is 50, lives nearby, and is Millie’s major support system. Her current medical problems include: hypertension, glaucoma, osteoarthritis of the knee, stress incontinence, osteoporosis, and hypercholesterolemia.

Read Millie’s monolgue. What are Millie’s strengths? What are Millie’s weaknesses? List 3 concerns you have as a nurse caring for Millie in her home- prioritize your list.


Millie Larsen Monologue Script


I’m Millie. I have lived in the same small house for the last 50 years. Harold and I raised our dear daughter Dina here and we had many good years together as a family. Harold passed last year, he was 91 you know, and I miss him terribly. I think about him every day. We were married for 68 years, most of them were happy. We did struggle with money at times, but who didn’t? All of our family lived close by and I spent many a Sunday cooking for 15 – 20 after church. Our home was always full of people; many of them are gone now. Snuggles, my cat, keeps me company. Snuggles is about 10 years old; she is a stray who just showed up on my doorstep one day and she’s been here ever since.


I’ve always kept myself busy, I sing when I can in the church choir and I volunteer in the church kitchen. I still love to cook; the church is always asking me to make my famous chicken and dumplings when we have special dinners. I can’t do as much as I used to, but that’s ok. I am fortunate to have many close friends from church.


I also enjoy gardening and I am known for growing my prize roses. My rose garden is not quite as big as it used to be, but I still like to get outside and work with the soil and the flowers. The fresh air does me some good. There are enough roses to cut several large bouquets every summer and I share them with my daughter and my friends. Did you know that my roses used to win blue ribbons at the county fair almost every year? Since Harold is gone, I go over to my daughter Dina’s house every week to visit and see my grandkids. Dina is a good cook, but her dumplings aren’t quite as good a mine and I try to make a batch to take with me when I can. Dina works everyday at the school so she is busy most of the time. She is a good daughter and she helps me when I need to get to the doctor. She also picks up groceries for me once and awhile. I have three grandchildren. Jessica is 17 and she graduates from high school this year. Daniel is 14 and he is a handful! He can give his mother trouble about getting his homework done and I don’t think his grades are very good. I know Dina worries about him. Megan is 12 and she is such a sweet child. She likes to help me with my roses in the summer.


I went to the doctor last week to get my blood pressure and my cholesterol checked. He wants to start me on a new pill for cholesterol. I already take about six or eight pills every day. I hope this new pill isn’t too expensive, I already have to pay a lot for my medications and I don’t get the pension anymore since Harold died. I don’t know how Harold paid all the bills, it doesn’t hardly seem like there’s enough money for all that medicine.


I am lucky that I can still get around pretty well and my house is not too big. My knees are pretty bad; I think they are just worn out. They hurt a lot. I am thankful that I can still tend my roses. My bladder isn’t as good as it used to be, I have to use Depends now and I worry that someone will notice the odor. I can’t laugh anymore; the leakage is getting so bad. But things like that happen when you get to be as old as I am. I can’t complain.

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