Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Office

I've been working more at the main office, and less at our satellite office, for a wide variety of reasons. As much as it is a satellite, because it's about two blocks away. We just ran out of space for our expanding little group.

Anyways, I was heading over to the main office. I had everything I needed with me. Then I thought--No. Let's go to the satellite office first, do some work there, then head over.

I got to the satellite office at 8:05. If I had gone to the main office, I would have gotten there between 8:08 and 8:10.

At 8:10, one of my co-workers was attacked by a guy with a gun who made off with her car.

The what-if's are going crazy in my head right now.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Wild West Honeymoon

Well since people are writing about their honeymoons, I didn't want to miss the party.

Especially since this is my space to remember nice things, and you know what? Today was not a nice day. In fact, it was downright crappy, and if I wasn't pregnant, I would find a bottle of wine and open it. On a weeknight. That's unheard of for me.

We had picked out crazy fun places, like Ireland or Paris. Promptly after picking those out, we decided we did not want to spend that much money. So, in the spirit of saving money, we shifted our thoughts of Hawaii.

You're laughing, right? You know you can fly to Paris or Ireland for less money than Hawaii? Yeah. About that. Well, we bought guide books, and picked out which island we wanted to go to, and thought about the stuff we wanted to do, and tallied up the cost.

We realized we could go to Hawaii and sit on the beach and do none of the fun things we wanted to do, stay at no place we wanted to, and probably not eat unless we found a pineapple on the beach.

We huffed and we puffed, and then decided that we would like to save Hawaii for when we could do it right. We then decided to redefine our criteria:

1. No cell phoen reception, or easy to pretend there is no cell phone reception.
2. Continential US.

Easy right? I promptly looked up the tourism websites for Montana, Wyoming, Arizona, and Colorado. After no debate at all, we used telepathy on each other and selected Colorado simultaneously, without looking back. Mountains. Warm. Pretty. Meets #1 and #2. Perfect.

We stayed for a few days in Manitou Springs, a small town outside Colorado Springs. Our B&B was lovely, and overlooked Pike's Peak. We did Pike's Peak, and Garden of Gods, and explored the town. Oh, and we totally did the Flying W for dinner and their entertainment.

Then we went up into the moutnains, and stayed at Estes Park. The B&B we stayed at is still one of the best we have ever been to, and we go back repeatedly. The owners are great, they cook amazing well, they have a wine cellar, the rooms were insanely comfortable, and they know the town inside and out. We saw a black bear climbing up a tree about fifty feet away from the huge wrap around porch, and when we pulled up to the B&B, there were elk in the driveway.

It was relaxing. There was nothing we felt like we had to see or do, because we would never be able to come back. It's Colorado. It's not hard to get there. It wasn't expensive. It was just right.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Too Far Gone

DISCLAIMER: I rarely write about specifics at work, but this is really, deeply bothering me. There are two cases that are very similar, so I am going to combine them, change all the identifying and non identifying details while still leaving it accurate, and sigh deeply over this.

So, there’s this kid, B. B ended up on my case load because B’s guardian threw up his hands and said I can’t do this anymore. B is a danger to me and my family. I’m looking at B, who is still single digits in age at the time, thinking okie dokie. B seems like a sweetie to me. And you know what? B is a sweetie.

Until a switch is flipped, and suddenly, B goes from happy go lucky, kind, and loving to angry, withdrawn, and then violent. Really, truly, glass breaking, table flipping, punching bag violent. These episodes can last minutes, or hours, or even days. Then, all of a sudden, sweet B is back, devastated at what happened, and is begging for help. Why do I do this? Why can’t you help me? What do I do to make myself stop? How do I get better? Then, B is so devastated at the answers, or the lack of answers, or how the answers don’t seem to help, or how slowly B makes progress, that then there’s the self harm problem.

B was exposed to all kinds of highly controlled substances while B's mom was pregnant with B. Then, somewhere along the way, B was neglected and abused, but we don't know when, how, or by who. B's parents are little fizzy on the details of B's life, oh say from birth through the age of 5, when they finally cleaned up. B’s behaviors are classic, textbook perfect symptoms of some of the worst kinds of abuse. But, given the circumstances B grew up in, we will never know what exactly happened to B.

Now we’re approaching puberty, and all those deee-lightful hormonal changes. Now I am seeing B with less sweet moments, and more anger, more outbursts. But even still, when B has those moments of calm, it’s like clarity descends, and B is begging for help again. Why do I do this? Why can’t you help me? What do I do to make myself stop? How do I get better? …I don’t want to be like this.

What’s scarier for me, and for B long term, is now I know B is having auditory hallucinations. B is getting paranoid. I am trying to move as fast as I can to B evaluated and into a placement that is good and helpful for B—because B’s current guardians can’t help B anymore. And they’re right—they and their family are not safe with B in the house, given some of the things B has tried recently.

So we’ve landed here. B’s school is offering a referral to a placement in a therapeutic setting, and B’s insurance is going to pay for it. I just don’t know if it will help. I mean, I know it will help, but can B ever be… I don’t know what words I’m looking for. Normal? Functioning? A productive member of society? They all seem too much, too trite, and not enough for what I want for B, all at the same time.

B has been on my caseload for years now. I can’t help but think that on some level, B is looking at all the adults in B’s life, and is thinking, all of you have failed me in some way, because I am still the way I am. And who’s to say that B’s wrong? I’m not sure I can.

Because I Make Lists, It's What I Do

My list of things that I just can’t wait to do again once I serve le bebe with her eviction notice is increasing, day by day. Let’s examine the list:

1. Eat sushi. At this point, my brain and stomach and my very soul I tell you are clamoring together suuuuuuuuushhhhiiiiiii. suuuuuuuuushhhhiiiiiii.

a. See also—lunch meat, unheated.

2. Work out. Riding a bike, sit ups, high impact exercise, jumpies, mountain climbers, for the love of Pete, anything but the stupid, useless boring exercises that seem to be the only ones okayed for the pregnant lady.

3. Drink champagne. I might drink a bottle by myself. Normally, I am a wine person, red or white, with a fierce love of champagne, so I will skip right over the wine and go for the good stuff. And mark my words, it will be the good champagne. Expensive. Good. Smooth. Champagne.

4. Stomach sleep. That’s the only way I’ve ever slept. I can’t wait to go back. It will be glorious, even if it is more only an hour at a time. I hate side sleeping. It is most uncomfortable. I’m not sure I ever really fall deeply asleep anymore, because I am constantly balancing on my side, even with the aid of the pillow. On that note, I can’t wait to ditch the body pillow.

5. Hot bath. Sign me up for my Jacuzzi tub. I can’t wait to get back into that baby with a just below boiling temperature and bubbles.

6. Skin reclamation. This bit about the great skin and the glowing look is a LIE. I look like a teenager again. Le bebe has had me all broken out since around the time she made my morning sickness appear. It is only with extreme diligence that I can sort of keep it under control and kind of not looking like I have small pox or some God awful thing.

There you go. Six more reasons besides le bebe herself to be excited about the end of this. And when is this over? Not for a while, friends. Not for a long while.

PS Did I mention that one of my favorite colors to wear is orange, like the rusty kind of orange (though I can wear any shade of orange, including neon)? It goes great with my skin tones. Imagine my dismay when I put on a stretchy orange sweater and saw myself in the mirror. It looks like I’m holding a pumpkin in front of me (much to Vor’s relief, I just restrained myself from typing “It looks like I am a pumpkin” …except! I just typed it! Woops!)

PPS It’s not a thing I’m excited to do, it’s a thing I’m excited not to be. Sick. I’m usually a healthy person. Pregnancy has given me migraines, all day sickness, a surprising susceptibility to strep, and now, major GI problems. I have never had such issues until I got pregnant. Coincidence? Hardly. Anyways, things are bad enough that I have to go see a GI specialist because I am not gaining enough weight. It’s not like I’m not trying here, people. I am eating. In fact, I am about to go eat more. But it won’t stick. The pregnant lady can’t gain weight. Pathetic. Constantly sick. Nothing stays with me. At least I’m not on bed rest. Why do I even type these things out loud? That’s like asking for it at this point.

PPPS I fail at being pregnant.