I'm on my way back to feeling sane again...
What a meat grinder the past couple of months have been. But now with some adjustments in my caseload, and having finally gotten caught up on paperwork I may finally be feeling a bit more balanced. I've been pushing myself at a brutal intensity and it has to stop.
On top of much time put into client and collateral contacts last week, I put in about 40 hours of time on paperwork alone Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and for 4 hours in the car on the way down to Fargo/Moorhead for Peer Review of files/Staff Meeting yesterday. File review went really well, with only 1 item sited that I was already aware of not having printed. Of course out of all my files THAT one would be one of three randomly chosen for review. Much to my Clinical Supervisor's chagrin, and to my delight, I handed her a 4 inch pile of papers that she will have to sign off on, each sheet! I feel sorry for her having to sign off on such a big block but it was the best I could do given the time crunch of the past two months. It's so good to be caught up and have that monkey off my back!
Tom did a little shopping for himself while I was at my meeting yesterday. He hadn't had new jeans in a couple of years and needed some new ones badly. He also got himself a new pipe and tobbaco, and a couple of books. After he picked me up we went to Target to pick up some things we needed for the house, a couple of TeeShirts that I can wear for work (after I do some embellishment of some kind on them) and some sundries, and I had to visit their $1 aisle for "prizes" to put in the prize bag I use with kids in families I work with, to reward them for good behavior. From there we went to Hobby Lobby where I picked up a ton of glitter to use in glitter jars, a Crayola book and markers for Ashlyn, and a couple of packages of paperclay. We went to Caribou Coffee to pick up a month's supply of Mocha Java, our favorite coffee, just a note of chocolate, very yummy! John gave us the code for his garage opener so that we could go there to chill out before he picked up Ashlyn after work. I got a good nap before they got home so had energy to play with Ashlyn. How it delights me to see her light up when she sees me. We played catch and "basketball" with a beach ball. Her rules. LOL It was a short visit but just what I needed. We left about 7:00 to make the trip home.
We should have stopped to get out of the car along the way, we will next time. I got the worst cramp in my inner thigh from all the sitting I've had to do the last several days, build up of stress, rotten nutrition, fatigue. It was excruciating! Tom had to stop the car so I could get out. On a scale of 10 the pain level was about a 13, unlike anything else I've ever experienced other than childbirth without any drugs. I got out to stand up and the next thing I knew I was on the ground, nearly passed out, in a cold sweat, nauseous. It scared the crap out of Tom! I got into the back seat to stretch my legs out straight for the half hour trip home and was fine after that. I did some research online and it doesn't seem to be anything to worry about, others describe the same thing, with the same experience, and the research seems to support what I already surmised about the cause. So today Tom and I are starting back on our path of self care, wellness with proper nutrition, exercise, balance, and relaxation. I hope I never have one of those again. It left me limp as a noodle! Today I am feeling the effects of the past brutal month, so am taking it easy this morning before I see a couple of clients this afternoon. This week is going to seem like a piece of cake (Knock on wood!) after the past weeks.
Yesterday I bought a Genga game that I'm going to use with families to build emotion vocabularies, teach communication, and facilitate sessions, after I write questions on the blocks. That will be fun! I saw the idea on the Pinterest Board of a therapist whose pins I follow. I love to include play in my counseling as so many of the families I work with forget how to play in the crush of sorrow, shame, and pain they endure. Play .lowers defenses in a non threatening way.
Tom is doing laundry this morning, taking Bear to the Vet this afternoon, needs to go see elderly HenriEtta after that and then is baptizing a whole family after dinner this evening.. We've discussed the menu for today so that we can begin our re-committment to health.
I'm going to do a bit of work in Katie's journal today, write the one report that I knew was missing (a short one, discharge summary) and see two families that are easy to see. Taking "warm fuzzies" and "cold pricklies" to help teach a pre-adoptive family better communication skills.
How I've missed spending art time! I joined ART ABANDONMENT group on Facebook. The point of the group is to make art and abandon it in a public place for someone to find and take home. I think that sounds like fun! I think it would be fun to do to leave in client's homes, or on their front steps, or in their mailboxes etc. with an affirming, hopeful message. I'm thinking ATC size pieces that are discreet to place here and there. What fun!
In the round robin that I belong to, one of the women experienced some health problems that caused her to lag behind and hold up the rest of the RR. Things got kind of ughly. The girls have started a new book for me because they believe that I will never get that book back from out of country. I don't know, I've tried to be patient, I still want to believe that I will get the book back, but when I ask the other person if she's worked on my book I get no response to my questions. So I've let go of attachment to the book, it was stressful. What else can I do? It's not like I can go knock on her door to ask for it back, or check on her to see if she is well. It makes me a bit sad. The ughliness made me sad too, but there is something sweet in the midst of it knowing the others care that I have something to show for the RR experience. I hate seeing people get hurt and hurting each other. I'm sorry for any part that I may have played in any of that unintentionally. I don't like to hurt people, and do try not to, but being human, it still happens at times.
LIFE IS GOOD!