Washington is in the midst of a major heat wave after nearly a whole month of June Gloom in addition to January through May Gloom. I learned this last year about myself: I swell really bad in the heat. I only know this now because I am sitting at the kitchen table (like I do) in my clients’ home and my ankles blend in with my legs and my calves are HUGE. It’s starting to spread to my hands and arms but isn’t as severe.
In my home, we fortunately have air conditioning so I was able to rest today and get the swelling down. However, now that I am almost an hour into my eight hour shift, we are back at square one. I am trying to stay hydrated but I feel so thirsty. But then again my urologist upped my oxybutynin which already makes me really thirsty and add 100 degree weather and I feel like the swollen Sahara.
I got my textbooks in the mail today for school. School starts exactly one week from today (Tuesday). I have seven weeks to finish three classes and read three large textbooks. I am taking intro to sociology, geology, and intro to drug studies. I added the last class a few days ago because if I am going to continue to be working graveyard shift or even swing shift, I will have the forty plus (HA! More like 60+) hours to do school work and if I can knock out my AA and certificate by next year, that would be so fucking dope.
I think the game plan for me right now is to stay at this job until I get my SUDP and AA degree and then work as a SUDP to get through undergrad. But even if I decided not to pursue my BA or BS in either human services or social work through WWU or UWT, respectively, a SUDP makes decent money and I would be happy doing that type of work. And even if I stayed at this job through undergrad I wouldn’t be upset about it because I enjoy it a lot. My only dislike about the job besides working NOC shift which isn’t the worst anyways is the politics.
All my co workers and supervisors are very opinionated about other staff and clients and what staff thinks is best for the client is also not always what *is* best for the client. Like last shift, I got a med error report written up on me because in the house I work at, the clients take their own meds and are in complete control of them. However, for the PRNs which are drugs taken as needed like cough drops or Tylenol or whatever, we must mark down what was taken at what time and why. Then we must write the results of the PRN. Simple enough, right?
My client has a cough and wanted to take two cough drops and is in control of the medication; he could have taken it without my knowledge and I would be none the wiser. However, before I could check the med binder for him to see the dosage requirements, he takes the two cough drops and so I write it in the med book. At that point I did not think to check the dosage of the cough drops because according to his paperwork, he can only have ONE every FOUR hours and he ended up taking three cough drops in two.
I got the reprimand for not reading the documentation but when there is a med error, whoever finds it had to call on-call and call the pharmacist or doctor and write a report. It’s a whole thing. I could potentially lose my certifications as a caregiver.
The reprimand didn’t upset me, I fucked up and I’m grateful it wasn’t worse than it was. I am upset because the client who knows I am new to the agency took advantage of my newness for personal gain. I guess the supervisor talked to the client and he KNEW he couldn’t take three goddamn cough drops at once. I didn’t think anything of it because when I’m sick, I eat that shit like candy. But I digress.
I now have to write a letter to the supervisor of this house and to the program coordinator to explain my side of the story because the girl who wrote me up is high key trying to get me in trouble which brings in the politics. I think I have a good enough rapport with this supervisor and the coordinator that we will let this slide since it was so minor. However, I don’t like that I have to save face in front of others while other people are writing shit about me and altering the truth of the matter. Yes I messed up, but how the chick made it sound was a lot worse than it really was.
The other issue here is that there is no cohesive system for all households. When you are a supervisor, anything you want goes. And when you are their staff, you do as you are told. Fair enough. I am flipped around so fucking much and switching from graves to days to swings and doing doubles that mistakes are bound to happen. I am used to the other house I am at where everything is perfectly organized and we do everything from cooking, cleaning, and meds. Had I been in charge of my client’s meds yesterday I would have known to first check the documents on dosage and not be blindsided when the client lies and is attention seeking and takes two rather than asking to do so.
Don’t get me wrong, I am all for personal autonomy! If the clients are able, they *should* administer track and take their own meds. However. Don’t come crying to me when there is a missed dose or something bad happens because there is no cohesive system for every house.
Anyways I digress. I had some suicidal ideation today, not from this whole rant discussion or anything but from being tired and a little hangry. I slept maybe 3.5 hours today so I am tired. But once I go home for the day I’m wired and then my mom wants to talk and hang out and it’s my one and only socialization time for the whole day and night so I’m just feeling fatigued and isolated.
Thanks for listening to my rants. I love you all.