April 28th, 2004

Modern Art

Megan, I'm going to gouge my eyes out with "Us" magazine before this rotation ends...

And she smiles at me. "Seventeen more days."
Today, when it's done, wil make sixteen.
I have not counted the days in a rotation since Peds Surgery. But I am counting them now, and not because I hate the rotation.

It's because, O Best Beloved, I hate waiting. And waiting is what this is all about. I wait in a small back room without any access to the 'net (my txt messages are my lifeline) and I should pick up a book and study a little, instead of playing Solitaire all day long, and I wait. And once in a while I peek up to the front and see if anyone's got a chart to go do something with.
Eventually, I'll get the charts and go see the clients, but not yet. I'm not comfortable seeing these people, not yet. I intend to stretch out my trial period as long as possible. I'll do it when Megan does.

I have a story to tell you, but perhaps I will write it today rather than now; I am short on time and creativity.
  • Current Mood
    awake awake
White Coat

Apathetic bloody planet, I've no sympathy at all...

No bonus points if you know where the subject came from, a stern thwap if you don't.

I'm feeling worn-out today. I think part of it is that I spent from 0915 AM to 1400 doing nothing at all but reading my textbook (two and a half chapters!) and playing on a computer which I snuck onto when someone didn't log out. No patients at all. And then three in a row - a work-release who needed his meds, a kid who was threatening suicide because he didn't want to go home and get beaten (with the belt end of a buckle), and a woman who's completely manic.

Compare with yesterday, in which a paranoid schizophrenic got unruly and threatening down at the jail, and was brought in. Ask a question, get a novel. Ask another, get another. Rambling, circumstantial thoughts in which each person was identified by race, gender, and position. "A black female police officer. A hispanic male waiter. The caucasian female judge." Sometimes, he'd throw in a name. We couldn't get much of a story out of him, but he said he wasn't taking his meds at one point, and we believed him.
Then staff came over. Then staff said "There aren't any psych beds."
Oh, he says, suddenly no longer rambling. Then I need a meal and to go back to the jail. I'm taking my meds as prescribed, I'm not a danger to myself or others.
We got all the way out of the Emergency Room before we broke down in laughter. "Think he's been through the system?" Dr. B says to me.
Ya think?

Seventeen days to go, O Best Beloved. I want to tell you my stories, but I am spending my days in an environment without structure, where I am responsible for checking the front office to see if there is a chart there, and then watching the clinicians to make sure they don't go see all the patients without me. I have no structure, nothing I am supposed to do on a regular basis, no guidelines for how to spend my free time. I am going mad with it. I pace the office, I read my text, I sneak onto the computers. I play Solitaire on Taika.
This not-knowing exhausts me, because I must work so hard to keep from going through everything in the office, organizing it, reading it. I prowl into offices. I sit on the couch. I do not fidget, although I spin back and forth when I am in a spinning chair. I do not want to fidget and distract everyone. And it is wearing on me already. This is only the third day.

Collapse )
You see, O Best Beloved, this has all happened before.

I went to the store and bought sushi, ate in the parking lot. I felt better. But now there is the ghost of pain on the right side of my head, and I begin to wonder if this is not all prodromal to a migraine I have not earned and do not deserve. In any case, I am drained of my energy by watching our manic patient, and I cannot find the words to bring her to life for you, though she is alive in my mind - a pretty but puppetlike creature of words and thoughts and expansive dreams and motions. She understood the choice between "voluntary commitment" and "emergency detention" and chose to go voluntarily, but it was a reluctant volunteerism, requiring Security to keep an eye on her. I got to do the physical exam. She talked the whole time.
She smoked in the bathroom; I could smell it on her. It was almost preferable to the damp, musty, hamster-bedding scent that seemed to hang in the air around her.

What is wrong, that in virtually every woman who'd ever had anorexia and took a particular mood-stabilizing medication - regardless of clinical state - generalized seizures developed? I wish I could see into the most intimate connections of her mind and find the strange and twisting pathways that taught her to believe she had to melt forks in the oven to cleanse her body of plastic residues.
  • Current Mood
    apathetic apathetic