Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy Birthday America

Thanks for giving me the freedom to enjoy a lack of w$#k, affordable basic healthcare and most likely any kind of Social Security benefit that I have been paying into for the past 28 years. Thanks for spending billions of tax dollars on a personal agenda war and bailouts for the greedy corporate sleeze who suck up the money and as a thank you make their fees for services for basic necessities such as a bank account almost out of my reach.

Feeling a little stressed today. My latest assignment is for an individual with Oldtimers Disease and they can become verbally and physically abusive. My first time in this situation. I've sat only a few hours with friends parents who had this disease before but none had the mean streak.

As far as w#@k goes my past experience is leaning towards folks who end up physically disabled, either through an accident or disease who may have a little forgetfulness but mentally are there.

After my first shift the family member asked me if I was still interested in coming back a few more times in a tone of voice that expected me to say no. I know its not the clients fault and it doesnt anger me at all to be told off by them but making sure they stay safe, dont run away and trying to get them to take their meds is stressful.

The family explained that they dont want the person totally drugged up but they are mood altering kinds of meds. The catch is gently trying to get the person to take the drugs (no one is forced to take drugs) can set them off enraged for hours but when they dont take them the last dosage is wearing off and they can get ugly. Either way you lose. I'm taking it all in stride and staying positive and calm around the client but the family has said when they get agitated there is no reasoning.

My boss has said this could lead to a regular position with them. I think after I get more experience I could relax a little more and know what to expect but this may not be the best fit for me. What a bitch disease for the family to go through. I will say about my boss, I rarely see her in person, which isnt a bad thing but whenever I complete one of these temp jobs she always makes a point to call the family and me and say really nice positive things about my w$#k. She probably does this with everyone but its still good to hear.

On the good news front, I applied at 3 other agencies a few weeks back. The first reply was a rejection and really caused me to have a miserable evening freaking out about money but the next day another agency called and we talked several times over a few hours. Finally I went in for an interview and the folks in charge seemed excited to meet me but then I had to take this dreaded test they called a "Survey".

This was the craziest test ever. All on the computer so you could only mark your answer with no explanation. I had to pick which one I would be most likely to do out of two choices that were both right. Over 100 questions. Which would you be most likely to do, A. wash dirty sheets B. greet the client before beginning caregiving. The whole "survey" was stuff like that, A. show up on time or B. communicate with the family. WTF, I have the feeling if I didnt pick the correct right answer even though everything listed is part of my job I could be baked.

But while I was gone taking the "survey" the 3rd agency called and set up a first interview which I aced. He told me definitely to expect a call after the holiday from the guy who could be my boss for another interview. This may be the job I want the most along with the man I am already set to care for regularly in a few weeks. My interviewer was a thinking person, and I got a little deep on the "where do I want to see myself/goal question in 5 years" but he liked it.

The 4th always reminds me of being in 5th grade during the Bicentennial. We had a parade around the block the school was on and I got to be the Liberty Bell.


  1. Happy 4th! At least the gummint can't take away your BBQ.


  2. They cant take away my BBQ but I'm still waiting on them for some cheese.

    Good news I just spent many hours with my Old-timers person and they were as sweet as could be, the first time I've seen them like this, a very pleasant shift. I even got a hug and a "thank you it was delicious" after I fixed them dinner. Of course 15 minutes later when they were sitting on the couch watching TV they said "that food was terrible" but that was it and they went back to being sweet. Phewww

  3. I have worked with a whole lot of folks with various kinds of dementia. I mostly liked it, but often wished I had known the person before they started down this very sad path.

  4. It was cool on my third time meeting this person I finally got to see the sweet side and teeny flashes of who they were. However day 4 had some bumps, they took a swing at me. It wouldnt have been a KO but a good wup upside the head. I dont know which was more surprising, that swing or that my reflexes kicked in to allow me to step back out of the way fast enough.

  5. yay for reflexes!

    wow. hope agency #3 comes through with something steady and lucrative!

  6. Unfortunately lucrative is not part of the deal unless i'm hired privately without an agency. Regular folks are more likely to pay well, but no guarantee and their arent too many who can afford care on their own.

    This is a seriously underpaid job considering some of the clients which is why i'm putting out as many feelers as possible to try to at least find some really mellow comfortable people to w$#k for through agencies, like the one man i'm set up to help. He's more like hanging out with a friend than w$#k.

    A real bitch I'm finding out too is people only need help for an hour or two at bedtime and thats all the gubment will pay for. The cool man lives about a 7 minute drive from me but it still could take an hour in a winter storm to shovel out of my house and get to his, shovel a place to park, w%$k an hour, slide home and possibly shovel a monster snow plow berm just to get back in my own drive. We can get that much snow that fast.

    Since I'm going to w$#k some longer day shifts for him I will help him a few nights a week, somebody has too and thats all his budget allows but now this temp weekend job which is nearby also wants me to w$#k regular 2hr night shifts 2 nights a week. I dont think so. They have 24/7 care so they can arrange some longer shifts to make it worth my while if its a harsh winter. Besides both the jobs will keep me up until 10 for little money and hopefully I'll find some that start early in the morning. Cavedog and I like to get to bed early and watch our shows on tivo.

  7. 30 years later and you're still cracked ;)

    since you haven't just finished a job, and that boss of yours hasn't had a chance to call you up to remind you, I must say: you are amazing.

  8. there was a thing on npr not that long ago about old people's taste buds and that they go kaput over time. and the first thing to go is salt and they think everything is bland and needs salt but of course most of them are on low sodium diets and can't have salt which doubles the situation. i think they recommend lots of lemon and citrus and using fragrant herbs. but anyway it's no reflection on your cooking when they complain about their food. nothing tastes right to them. everything is different than it used to be and they're disappointed.

    anyway -- it's so cool you're getting deep into the care biz. your true calling perhaps. and with the heart of an animal lover. should prove worthy of many interesting blog posts to come for some time.

  9. We are just beginning to go through these things with my grandmother. Not the abusive parts, just the not being able to care for herself any longer and she refuses to move in with anyone. We've hired a new lady to sit with her during the daytime. So far, I like her. She seems to be good with my grandmother. Now if my crazy ass family doesn't do something stupid to scare her off.

    We did absolutely nothing to celebrate the 4th this year. That isn't like us at all, but I just didn't feel very festive.