Friday, December 28, 2007
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Posted by teresa at 12/25/2007 12:36:00 PM
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Posted by teresa at 12/11/2007 10:32:00 PM
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Well, okay...I gained a pound.
Monday, September 10, 2007
Sunday, September 09, 2007
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
oh where oh where could it be?
Oh, wait. Cool! I see where blogger has added a video option. You go Bloggy boi!
This massive career change has really consumed me hook, line, and sinker... I am realizing self-care isn't just nice, it's survival. This new job is really, really stressful and I have to really practice active relaxation techniques and make sure I eat right, exercise---or, ka-pow!!! But, somehow I love this job more than anything I have ever done...weird.
Gotta take Grayson to the university vet school for an echocardiogram tomorrow morning. He's kitty no. 2 falling into the category of heart failure. Atticus is still going strong, but now Grayson, who has an enlarged aortal arch, is starting to develop a chronic cough and continued tachycardia. I'm afraid we're going to lose a couple of critters this year, which I can't even fathom going through that all over again...
One very interesting proposition I made to my husband the other day-- "You know, I need to really take better care of myself, get this extra weight off I've packed on during graduate school...say, if I get down to 149 pounds, you can book a trip to Paris...*snicker*"
To my surprise, he agreed. I clarified immediately that we were talking about THIS PARIS and not THIS PARIS.
Yep, he said he would walk straight to his computer and book the trip if I got healthy and reached 149. I am currently 181(ugh).
He established the rules of deflabulation:
1) I can't starve myself (or cut off necessary limbs for instant weight reduction).
2) I have to eat right.
3) I have to exercise.
In other words, I have to get healthy the old fashioned way--the only way that works.
This all came about after I had a meltdown after an extremely stressful family session that was quite toxic. I thought I had debriefed enough with a colleague, but au contraire, as I was to find out...after I got home, up came some bubblin' crude...
oil, that is...otherwise known as a stressed-out meltdown.
THUS, Operation Glue Your Shit Back Together was initiated. The payoff is quite nice:
1) lower blood pressure
2) reasonable cholesterol
3) less junk in my trunk
4) and a frickin' trip to France
Damn. I'm feeling downright lucky.
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Friday, August 24, 2007
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Thursday, August 02, 2007
Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Gosh I hate to leave out the highlights of my career. Like the other day when I was conducting a relaxation group...everyone eyes closed...breathing deeply...then about 20 minutes into the exercise, I hear a couple of gags and open my eyes to a patient puking freely all over the floor...uh, um, continue breathing...uh...uh...
We moved to another room.
And the other day the cleaning crew had the joy of wiping down a poo-smeared bathroom. Now, I don't know what that was about, but I'm glad I didn't walk in on it.
There's never a dull day, and never a day that doesn't keep you human and very humble.
I really do miss my blog. I no longer write for eloquence or wit, but for speed to meet an insurance deadline. I write about symptoms in sentence fragments, instead of worrying with the musical lilt of the words...which, at first, nearly broke me out in a rash.
But I have learned SO much as a beginning therapist. Although we are still fighting short staffing and program changes, I have really gotten an education on a lot of things...on hope, on the tragedy of cognitive decline, on the perils of insurance bullshit, on learning a new lingo and becoming part of the clinical world, on priorities, on self-care, on dignity, respect, and honor.
There have been days when I really felt like I made a difference in a person's life, which is a heady reward for someone who churned out newsletters and intranet snippet-writing. There have also been suicide prevention contracts to sign, frightening stories, and heartbreaking situations.
All in all, the rapid pace of being immersed in this new profession has my head spinning, and it will take me a while to regain balance again...to be able to leave the patients at the center and not hear them ruminating, asking me questions, and mucking around in my head all evening long. But I've heard that skill of separation simply takes time and experience. It is quite an adventure and one I do not regret.
Thursday, July 19, 2007
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Sunday, July 15, 2007
Sunday, July 08, 2007
Wah. Wah. Wah.
I am still in school, taking one last class to get a graduate certificate in gerontology...and the "frickin' woe of it all" has to do with a paper I need to be writing right now.
But I don't wanna.
Like a 5 year old doesn't wanna...
I have been so tired and stressed out over the past two weeks that I don't frickin' wanna do much of anything when I get home. We are under-staffed and reorganizing all in the same breath at the hospital I work at and it is excruciating. Everyone is trying to stay afloat and not kill one another. Our director just left, everyone on staff is fairly new and admissions are flocking in like stuck-together boogers on a stick.
I dare say my marketing job at its busiest was akin to sitting around and picking my nose compared to my job as a therapist at this partial-hospitalization program. I do still love it, but it is fast-paced, extremely emotionally and intellectually demanding, no time to eat or take a piss... I've worked through my lunch everyday since May 25. Come in early and stay late--and be nowhere near caught up on Medicare's evil and mighty stack of required paperwork. Suicidal? Yeah, well prove it with these 15 forms...
Like I said...wah, wah, wah.
I still wouldn't go back though. The rewards of the job are worth the growing pains.
Unfortunately, the blog has suffered mightily, and probably will continue to do so until things smooth out a little more...
I guess I'd better go squeeze that paper out of my ass now. Bleh.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Monday, July 02, 2007
So, I did 8 1/2 hours of paperwork and 1 1/2 hours of therapy today...see anything wrong with that? Unfortunately, that's pretty typical.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
I felt like this at work today...
Sunday, June 17, 2007
Wednesday, June 06, 2007
As a new therapist serving older adults, I am single-handedly killing the rainforest. Medicare requires so much documentation that it is a flat-out race to get it done each day. I spend far more time documenting than I do providing treatment.
Now THAT'S crazy.
It's not like you can catch up on it either. You've got a 24 hour window to get it done. Fortunately for the trees, we will be transitioning to an electronic charting system.
What a big change it is to go from the administrative side of life to the clinician side. They really are woefully disconnected from one another. I hardly have time to pee during the day as a social worker/therapist. Everything is time-limited and pressured. There's no time to read the silly newsletter I used to edit. There are 500 other things that come before it...just like what I used to complain about..."why don't they read their newsletter?!" Now I know why. Well, I knew before, but I tried to convince myself that they would somehow find it in their hearts to read the corporate newsletter in order to save my waning ego.
The other big change is that everything is ill-equipped for staff. Ah, the days in marketing were cushy, my friend. You needed supplies...ask and ye shall receive promptly. Welcome to human services... Now I sit in a broken chair, work on an old computer and clunky old inkjet, share an office with another therapist and scrounge for supplies and materials. But I knew it would be that way, because our focus is on the patients who enjoy a homelike atmosphere that is healing and healthy. And the hungry get fed first when there's only so much money to go around, right?
By the way, did I tell you I love my job? (never said that before) Either I'm a masochist, or something real is happening in my life...
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
On Friday, something will be conferred to me...no, not cooties or some other dastardly disease of social lubrication...
Yup, that one. The one that says I'm out of the nest. Jiminy Crackheads.
So, apparently I somehow got through the whole thing and will finally get my master's in social work. Maybe even summa cum laude. Not that I've paid attention to such things...
Snarling Purring and waiting around the corner is a new career. I have been offered a full-time job as a geriatriK therapissed. Happy about that...not pissed ;-)
One of the reasons I chose this field is because you will always be challenged to learn more. I just dread the years of being a beginner again. Or maybe if I can be truly mindful, I can be in constant wonder at the knocking of my knees...
Thursday, April 19, 2007
There's just nothing you can say about this week's horror. Here are some good articles for those who are looking for guidance in helping themselves or others heal...from the American Psychological Association.
Tips for College and University Students: Managing Your Distress in the Aftermath of the Virginia Tech Shootings
Talking to your children about the recent spate of school shootings
Managing stress after traumatic events
Violent Video Games Can Increase Aggression
I should note what prompted this post so late after the news of this event...this morning I was sitting in one of my very last university classes before graduation and I kept hearing a "popping" outside...just like a handgun (sounding eerily like the video as well as I have shot handguns before and know what they sound like)...and even though I was 99.9% sure it really was construction, it was very, very unnerving to keep hearing it. It went on for about 10 minutes and finally stopped.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
The most precious little mutt ever, Pickles, our little pup we rescued from a neglectful neighbor nearly 15 years ago was put to sleep yesterday...
Something terrible happened, possibly a brain tumor or a brain bleed. She wasn't able to do anything but pace as if she were blind, unable to recognize us or respond. It was as if she had developed sudden severe dementia. It was really horrible, especially knowing what a sweet spirit she was...never once a bad mood, never once unhappy to see us, never once a complaint...always sweet, always 100% loving. We miss her horribly.
Please go give our little gal a bone on Dogster...
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
One of my dearest uncles died this morning. He became ill rather suddenly. I didn't get to say goodbye, which makes me sad. He was one of the most kind-hearted people I've ever known. Another funeral.
I would like to find out if this was a space station sighting.
Here's the info from NASA...looks like this could be the culprit, even though it doesn't explain the strange sparkles so far away from the center light.
I saw it again this morning in the same area, so I'm very interested to see if this is it.
Saturday, March 24, 2007
Friday, March 23, 2007
My father-in-law did take a photo of the object we saw, but as I suspected, without a massive zoom, it doesn't really look like much. You can tell it's not a picture of a star, but it doesn't appear to be anything else either.
So, anyway, all I saw this morning was a star hanging out in the same area...no blinking, hovering or speeding satellite objects.
I am all about finding a rational explanation for this, by the way. I have seen in the early morning bright reflections from airliners traveling into the dawn while it was still dark where I was, but it still doesn't explain all the other stuff. I am pretty relieved that the geometric lights were not real (I think anyway).
I'll probably never know. Weird.
Thursday, March 22, 2007
So, being the rational sort, I can't stand the fact I don't have an explanation for this phenomenon I experienced this morning.
I did discover that the geometric lights were a trick of the eye. I took the binoculars to several windows and discovered that the window upstairs has a metal screen that separates large points of light into segments. And that explains why my father-in-law didn't see the separate lights like I did (my husband couldn't see separate lights because he can't see crap).
that explains the fancy clothes, but not the rest of it...all the stuff I saw from the basement window with my naked eye--the abnormal sparks, the wavering hover, the bright light that has never been there any other morning...and then, upstairs, the reddish blinking light that traveled upward in a diagonal direction at an exponential speed...
I hope tomorrow's doggie duties yield nothing more exciting than full water and food bowls.
And, I hope I find some way I can explain the other 85 percent. But, I doubt it.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Today is the one-year anniversary of Sadie’s death. I can’t believe it has been a year. She was a real rascal and an expert at disobedience. She rarely sat still and she frequently lost her temper with our other dog. There were at least three times that we rushed off to the vet to get stitches. We went to a veterinary behaviorist (which is the same rate as a shrink, except without the insurance assistance). I read books. I fretted. I chased her all over the house. She chased me all over the house. We played hide-and-go-seek. She had to be at least one body length ahead of Pickles when we walked. She would distract Pickles by barking at a fake intruder and then steal her treat as soon as Pickles came to see what was going on. She wanted soft toys just to un-stuff them. She wanted hard toys just to bury them (she took great care in burying items). She ran from my big white deaf cat. She hated the garbage men. She hated sirens. She hated thunderstorms. She loved people and kids. She hated dogs. She constantly pestered us when she was inside. She constantly pestered us to come inside when she was outside. She loved to chase birds. She hated to get up in the morning. She hated to go to bed. She’d run upstairs when you told her to go downstairs. She loved to eat more than anything else. She learned that she could only eat the pieces of cat food that had fallen out of the bowl and on the kitchen floor. She cleaned the kitchen floor of all crumbs. She wouldn’t stay out of the garbage. She loved to hear herself bark. The neighbors hated to hear her bark. She loved getting her Christmas toys. Her Christmas toys only lasted 30 minutes. She was a handful. She was always mischievous. Her eyes were always sparkling. She was always smiling like sunshine.
I miss my gal.
Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Today is the 2nd year anniversary of when we found my father after his accident. I've taken off a couple days to lay low, decrease the stimuli and general overload. I didn't expect the second anniversary to be as painful as the first...
A couple more months and I will have hopefully earned my mastirz in soshul werk...thank God...I thought I would never get there.
My internship in veturinarie soshul werk has been very interesting, but the constant death in this teaching hospital has really worn on me. There are multiple euthanasias nearly every day...it can be terribly difficult for the interns and residents just starting their careers. And I have found out that I would not be able to do this type of work full-time. It is constant grief work and not much else. Yes, you get to see animals all the time and that's really cool, but you also get to see a lot of them die, too.
It could be the anniversary or it could be something else, but I know I want to be able to do more than crisis management and grief work. I do, however, want to be connected to the field as a supportive clinician. Compasshun fatigue is a huge problem in the field and vets see death 5 times more than human doctors. Becoming disconnected and numb is a problem for these folks sometimes, as is burnout.
Yes, now you can create the penis of your dreams. And balls, too...need to talk to the boss? Just join another skein and get the cajones you never had.
Sunday, February 25, 2007
Sunday, February 11, 2007
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
And I don't take it back.
A couple of weeks ago I came in to work over the weekend and the building alarm went off. Mind you, it's always malfunctioning and such, so quite frankly, I didn't do anything about it. I didn't have a number to call so I just tried to get my stuff done.
Which is stupid, but sometimes I do stupid things.
I wasn't going to be there long, so my husband came with me. He was wondering around the suite, annoyed that I didn't know who to call. I was in my office and then I heard him call my name, "Uh, Teresa?!"
When I stepped out into the main area of the office, there was the K-9 unit and two policemen with their guns drawn.
Puppy looked hungry. Puppy wanted to eat us.
And the first thing out of my mouth was, "What a pretty dog!"
The cop closest to me looked stunned, as did my husband. But, the smallish German Shepherd dog was beautiful, despite the fact it was pulling so hard the K9 officer had to brace himself to pull him back.
"I guess I shouldn't be happy to see a K9 unit," I said to the officer.
He chuckled a little in a dismayed sort of way and shook his head. "No, you don't..."
So, I proved my identity by pointing to my name on the wall, giving him my license and a business card. All with a smile. All while no one else could figure out why I would take a thing in stride.
I did apologize...a lot. And they told us to have a good night.
I got an angry lecture from my husband and I took it because I deserved it this time. I do not take lectures from anyone unless I've really goofed.
I do know the security code now. By memory. Etched in gray matter.
But the truth is that I really wanted to pet the dog.