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BS: stay afloat while others don't

keberoxu 21 Jul 21 - 03:47 PM
keberoxu 16 Jul 21 - 03:08 PM
keberoxu 15 Jul 21 - 10:38 PM
keberoxu 30 Jun 21 - 10:11 PM
Helen 20 Jun 21 - 04:03 PM
keberoxu 19 Jun 21 - 06:26 PM
keberoxu 13 Jun 21 - 10:45 PM
keberoxu 28 May 21 - 11:02 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 19 May 21 - 04:36 PM
Mrrzy 16 May 21 - 04:27 PM
Helen 16 May 21 - 04:07 PM
keberoxu 16 May 21 - 04:01 PM
keberoxu 20 Apr 21 - 06:31 PM
Mrrzy 09 Apr 21 - 04:08 PM
keberoxu 09 Apr 21 - 12:40 PM
Mrrzy 20 Mar 21 - 11:55 AM
Donuel 20 Mar 21 - 11:23 AM
keberoxu 19 Mar 21 - 10:24 PM
Jon Freeman 18 Mar 21 - 11:49 AM
Mrrzy 18 Mar 21 - 10:58 AM
keberoxu 17 Mar 21 - 10:07 PM
Mrrzy 11 Mar 21 - 06:28 PM
keberoxu 08 Mar 21 - 10:12 PM
Mrrzy 27 Jan 21 - 05:21 PM
keberoxu 25 Jan 21 - 07:27 PM
keberoxu 25 Jan 21 - 11:24 AM
Mrrzy 23 Jan 21 - 11:05 PM
keberoxu 23 Jan 21 - 09:22 PM
keberoxu 20 Jan 21 - 09:15 PM
keberoxu 20 Jan 21 - 02:49 PM
Mrrzy 17 Jan 21 - 06:23 PM
keberoxu 17 Jan 21 - 04:43 PM
Mrrzy 09 Jan 21 - 01:20 AM
keberoxu 08 Jan 21 - 08:23 PM
keberoxu 31 Dec 20 - 12:45 PM
Mrrzy 29 Dec 20 - 07:08 PM
keberoxu 28 Dec 20 - 02:58 PM
Mrrzy 26 Dec 20 - 03:43 PM
keberoxu 26 Dec 20 - 02:32 PM
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keberoxu 24 Dec 20 - 04:22 PM
Mrrzy 22 Dec 20 - 03:38 PM
Mrrzy 06 Dec 20 - 09:57 PM
keberoxu 05 Dec 20 - 09:40 PM
keberoxu 27 Nov 20 - 01:05 PM
keberoxu 24 Nov 20 - 09:12 PM
keberoxu 21 Nov 20 - 09:22 PM
Mrrzy 11 Nov 20 - 01:44 PM
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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 21 Jul 21 - 03:47 PM

When first admitted, my assignment to one therapist
was a source of much distress and frustration,
so I switched clinical teams, last year,
and have since been much happier
with my present psychiatrist.


As to that psychotherapist (not an MD)
that I could not get on with, last year,
this clinician has completed their fellowship at the clinic, and ...
been hired to work full-time on the therapy staff.

The ways of bureaucracies are beyond me sometimes.
If this were one year ago, I would be up in arms.
But now ... c'est la guerre, or some such.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 16 Jul 21 - 03:08 PM

The saga of the pet dog has taken a new turn.

Earlier this week, our needy patient was approved to step down their treatment, by moving out of the main residence (where my room is) and relocating to a different building here on the clinic campus, where the treatment plan rate is cheaper.

The move happened immediately upon approval, the patient cleared out of the room here, and relocated to that other building.
And on that same day, their puppy dog went missing.
Now, HERE AT THE PATIENT RESIDENCE,
a Lost Dog Notice has been posted with a photograph of the seven-month-old puppy dog.

As if!
I'm sorry ... under no circumstances are we patients permitted to have a pet animal with us, and here is this Lost Dog notice on the patients' community bulletin board.

There are a bunch of questions I don't know the answers to. Like, what about the relative who paid for a hotel room somewhere close by where they looked after the puppy dog. And where, often as not, the patient would spend every night.
I recall being in my room after hours, and hearing in the hallway outside,
the nurse on duty coming to the other patient's room, knocking on the door, calling the patient's name, then shouting that she, the nurse, was going to unlock the door and let herself into the patient's room to see if anyone were there. Then the nurse would unlock the door, I would hear the key in the lock and all that, and the nurse would confirm, No, the bedroom has nobody in it, either human or canine, and would lock the room back up and return to the nurses' station to report.

Sigh.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 15 Jul 21 - 10:38 PM

Today,
stay afloat
felt more like
drag my tail.

The work I did in my therapy appointment was necessary and promising, but it hurt like the dickens, and I cried a lot,
during and after.

I misplaced the key to my room, which, thankfully, somebody else found for me and returned. I NEVER lose my room key.

The humidity and dew points are so high hereabouts, that
the humidity sensor device in my room's bathroom
keeps turning on the exhaust fan.
Even when I have neither bathed nor showered.
That happened earlier this week.
To adjust the switch on the sensor device,
I had to pull an occasional table into the bathroom
and stand on top of the table
in order to get my fingers on the switch.
The switch is so high up the bathroom wall that
even when standing on the table top, I cannot see the actual lever,
on top of the little component box that says Honeywell.
The exhaust fan, of course, is a ceiling fixture.

I just showered and shampooed and dried off,
so the exhaust fan is going as I enter this
at the room desk on my laptop.

If I have got to have a nervous breakthrough,
this is a really comfortable bedroom in which to have it,
I will say that.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 30 Jun 21 - 10:11 PM

Just when I thought I had witnessed everything:

I haven't seen all the players in this saga.
However, a patient whose room is not far from mine,
is under the rather worried and definitely harried scrutiny
of nursing, program managers, and other staff.
Calling this patient eccentric is ... euphemistic.

The patient is almost routinely flunking
the weekly room inspections, what with clothing all over the floor
and I forget what else, never puts anything away.
Until, having flunked room inspection, they are forced to do so.

In the meanwhile, this patient has so desperate an attachment
to their pet dog that
a relative has sort of moved into a nearby hotel, WITH the dog,
and
the patient spends nights and weekends, not in their room,
but at the hotel with the relative and the dog.
This family has the smarts, at least,
to keep the dog away from the clinic,
so I've never observed the dog,
just had second-hand info about the patient being with the dog.

The patient is not from this area,
and is also desperately homesick,
crying themselves to sleep until hitting upon
this scheme of the hotel room, the relative, and the pet dog.
Mind you, this clinic is NOT cheap,
and neither are the hotels, not the ones where
a pet dog is permitted anyhow.
So this family is tight-knit and, erm, spendthrift??

As for me, for the time being I have negotiated that
I will stay on my present treatment plan.
Not step up to that more intense nursing option.
And, with the understanding that I keep my clinical team informed,
I will stay out of the group therapy sessions:
these are voluntary anyhow, no one can force me to attend.
And as long as I stay in touch with, and work with,
my doctor, my therapist, my nurse, my social worker,
my program manager and so on, then
I can pick and choose, and work out how to continue treatment.
We'll see how this goes for a while.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Helen
Date: 20 Jun 21 - 04:03 PM

Hi keberoxu, I always listen because I want to know that your life-project is progressing well. And it seems to me that you are fairly clear about what you want and how you plan to get there, and that the plan appears to be working.

I'm thinking again of the idea that life and learning is a spiral. I talked about it in this thread on 01 Jun 20 - 01:12 AM

"learning is not walking around and around a circular path, seeing and doing exactly the same things over and over again. It's a spiral going upwards, so when you encounter a situation which you have been in before, you are different than you were previously."


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Jun 21 - 06:26 PM

The new and different bedroom is an adjustment but overall a good thing.

What I may do next is something different than I considered before.
I was looking at a cheaper plan on the institution campus.
Now what would answer my needs best is to get
more support from nursing while staying in the present building --
and this, of course, means switching to a more expensive plan.

My present plan features a little bit of contact with nursing, per week,
with a lot of group therapy sessions.
Now, doing some particularly delicate and painful emotional work,
I feel more trusting of nursing than I feel about the group.
It doesn't help that, in the past two months,
the group membership is so greatly changed.
I would feel better cared for, right now,
with less group therapy and more time with nursing.

Two months ago the group-therapy membership was
a pretty chill group of people.
We could be together and separate, in a positive sense,
at the same time: giving each other space and respect.
Some of us -- not necessarily me -- behaved like adults most of the time.

Well, many of the respectful adult members discharged within the past eight weeks.
The group membership now is dominated largely by patients who only arrived recently, some more recently than others;
and they are as needy and intrusive and boundary-oblivious
as the previous members were respectful.

I have felt myself going along with the group dynamic,
and on looking more closely at my behavior,
I see things I want to change, for myself and for the sake of others. Some of it strongly influenced by the drama in the group now.

Certain group members will fuss, like tantrum-prone children,
when I set a boundary and tell them that
my treatment is no longer any of their business;
all the more reason to do so, and that firmly,
and to have the support of clinicians and nursing while doing it.
It won't be easy.
Asserting myself in this fashion is something I haven't done often.
I believe I will be better off for doing so now
and getting on with the uncomfortable parts of my treatment
amongst people I can trust.
Thanks for listening, it means a lot to me.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 13 Jun 21 - 10:45 PM

Instead of moving to a different residence on the campus,
with a different program rate,
I moved to a larger bedroom in the same building at the same rate.
And I'm sleeping better at night, strange to say.
(Private bathroom, I don't share it in a suite like before.)


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 28 May 21 - 11:02 PM

Welcome, Jerry, and you may call me that or whatever else.

After taking time to think it through,
while the visit to the other on-campus residence was worthwhile,
my decision was to stay where I am probably through the summer:
I have settled comfortably into this program
and want to enjoy it a little longer.

When it is the right time to move,
I will feel better about my options for having looked around now.

The Memorial Day holiday long-weekend is upon us,
and many of us remaining here in the campus residences
are surprisingly over-sensitive and cranky,
snapping at each other,
breaking down and crying,
or just expressing exhaustion and impatience with listening to each other.

Oddly, after joining in with my own complaints
and hearing somebody say I hurt their feelings,
I feel ... very brave for having spoken up to complain in the first place?

How weird is that?! I'm supposed to be nice to people
but I'm proud of myself for taking the risk of
saying how I feel even when someone else's feelings are hurt.

I guess that's how you think and talk
when you've been in treatment for over twelve months ...


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 19 May 21 - 04:36 PM

Hey, Keb. May I call you Keb?

I'm sorry I am so late to this conversation. I can see how many people care about you. I'll add something uncharacterstically short for me. In the Christian faith, it is fundamental, and yet often forgotten. It's good advice, whatever your faith or beliefs;

"Love your neighbor AS YOURSELF."
Love for others is built on the foundation of loving yourself.

Sometimes you have to separate yourself from those who are destructive, even if you love them, and they are family or close friends.

You clearly know this.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 16 May 21 - 04:27 PM

Take your time over your decision, too...

But this is all really great to read, keb.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Helen
Date: 16 May 21 - 04:07 PM

Choices, choices! :-)

Can you try out the alternative residence to see if it suits you and works for what you need?


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 16 May 21 - 04:01 PM

Working out what to do next with my in-patient treatment.
No longer feeling stuck, if anything
I'm spoiled for options to choose from.

Looked at another in-patient, on-campus residence
which can be lived in, at a lower daily/monthly rate
than that charged at the main residence.

The main residence has the dining hall;
the smaller cheaper residence has its own kitchen,
and tenants may choose to continue to dine at the main residence
while sleeping in bedrooms at the cheaper treatment-plan building.


I could do this.

I could also move off-campus.
Thinking hard, very hard, about it all.

Post script:
most of the patients who were making life hell
for the rest of us,
have either discharged or
are in day treatment off-campus.
It's almost like a different community of patients. And yet.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 Apr 21 - 06:31 PM

Nobody but me is gonna care about this, that's okay:
today, after months months months too many months,
the auto service and repair required
FINALLY got done, and done right.
Sure it was expensive. I paid in full.
It was the time more than the money that was an obstacle.
Being an inpatient at a clinic, and getting the car serviced ...
harder than I planned on.

But here in this part of the US, this week in April, for some reason, is a vacation week;
and all my clinicians took their vacation this week, so I said:
Fine. I'll take a few days off from the clinic, go back to where I rent an apartment,
and make an appointment for the service mechanics I have a history with,
to evaluate and repair/replace things on my car.
This included a manufacturer recall involving seat belts,
that is something one does not leave to chance.

So the work is done, the bill is paid, and in a few days
I can drive back to the clinic and get back into the schedule.
The weather, thankfully, has been cooperating nicely.

I just feel hugely relieved.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 09 Apr 21 - 04:08 PM

Ooh no fun at all!


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 09 Apr 21 - 12:40 PM

Requested, as an in-patient, and had scheduled for me at a local hospital,
my first colonoscopy.
Sound choice. Of course the bowel prep is miserable and all.
Much better to do it as an in-patient, with support,
before and after the procedure, from the clinic's nursing department.
The in-patient residence kitchen supported me during that day of fasting and cleansing
by heating clear chicken-soup broth for me.
All the comforts of home, really.
And they tell me -- at the hospital --
to come back for another procedure in ten years.
Thank goodness that's over.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 20 Mar 21 - 11:55 AM

Well, k, years of therapy... Decades... helped me, so I have hopes for your future emotional-weight loss.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Donuel
Date: 20 Mar 21 - 11:23 AM

I welcome confronting conflict or disagreements and think destiny is 20/40 hindsight but who says this is the way to go. I know overall it doesn't help but I do it anyway. Sounds like your way is a perfectly fine way to navigate this diverse world. Persona is more varied than skin color.
As for staying afloat I've mastered the dead man's float and save energy compared to treading water. ;^/ I know there is no cure for dyslexia and am fine with it.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Mar 21 - 10:24 PM

The deflating answer to your question, Mrrzy, is no:
that weight is still inside me.
I experience it as resistance to confronting conflict or disagreements.
The whole point of being in treatment here is that I don't have to deal with this all alone,
but they can't make it go away -- I have to confront the resistance inside of me.


Jon Freeman, destiny is a mysterious thing.
Although your hospital had a low rating,
your experience there was somehow destined to be constructive and salubrious.

I'm having, on balance, good treatment at this institution where the patient milieu is a little ... unpredictable.
I don't name it, as you see.
The institution for one thing
would probably be all up my you-know-where,
did they know I was describing them online like this.
For another this institution has a reputation to uphold:
within its niche of long-term residential treatment
it has made a name for itself. So, I withhold the name.

And it is no secret at all, however quietly told,
that some patients have come to this very institution
and have had experiences that were thoroughly unfortunate.
You just never really know how things will work out,
no matter how you plan.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 11:49 AM

I sometimes try but fail to work out what it's like.

I've had a couple of stays in mental hospitals.

The second, and longer one was probably around 2012 when I was in for an alcohol detox. It was a bit odd as I'd made, before admission, a comment about a demon that disturbed the consultant who wanted to see how I went for a week without alcohol. The end result was that for the second week of my stay, I was there and on no medication at all (and was given a clean bill of health).

Overall, I enjoyed (well after the initial higher doeses Benzodiazepines [Librium] were over) my stay and this is from someone who doesn't usually get on with hospitals. Yes, there were restrictions in getting out but very friendly staff, very nice (home cooking, I'd call it) meals and I found myself fitting in well to make up a group of (in jest) 3 grumpy old men who would sit in the canteen, go out for a fag (UK cigarette which, yes, was allowed then) and generally put the world to rights. Perhaps I could have become institutionalised...

I was saddened to read a few years later that the Hospital (Helesdon, Norfolk) had become part of the worst rated mental health trust in the UK as, during my time, I felt they did a lot right.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 10:58 AM

Did it feel like that weight was off your shoulders, afterwards, k?


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 17 Mar 21 - 10:07 PM

An earlier post reported
a distressing conflict with a staffperson. Today my request was granted,
and a brief mediation session was held
in which I aired my complaint with the staffperson,
with another staffperson present.
The person with whom I had the conflict apologized.
And it was all very civil and quiet,
and we all went our separate ways after.


The strange thing for me is how difficult it was for me to speak.
I felt like I was having to lift this impossible weight,
it was just this insupportable heaviness.
I said what I had to say,
but it felt almost unbearable.
I have been resting for the rest of the day.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 11 Mar 21 - 06:28 PM

Bully for you, k!


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 08 Mar 21 - 10:12 PM

Things are better now.
The weather is improving, not so bitterly cold or snowy.
We have sunny days now.

A number of patients have discharged.
Two staffpersons are getting ready to retire in a month or two,
and it looks like some others will follow.
After New Year's, suddenly we had
three new people to facilitate therapy groups:
new hires, all of them. Not sure of backgrounds,
they are not clinicians as such.

What this amounts to is
conditions are improving here.
Sure, there is still drama and breakdowns and all.
But some sort of balance is being found,
after the utter debacle of the year-end holidays
when patients were acting out like mad.

And some of the patients who have recently discharged
have occasioned great sighs of relief, as they were
causes of upset and conflict while they were here.

The holidays, I was quite safe here
but it was also rather sad and heavy.
Now I am getting a second wind,
and doing some really good therapeutic work with my clinicians.
Even when I find myself in a distressing situation with someone
( one of the staff, God help me),
I have plenty of support at every level,
including other managers and directors
who take my part, so I never have to feel isolated.

It's a good thing I stayed the course and did not quit.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 27 Jan 21 - 05:21 PM

Water started tasting horrible so I got scared, but then read the fine print on the antibiotic rinse I am using till allowed to brush again, and it says Don't rinse with water or it will taste horrible.
Whew again.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 25 Jan 21 - 07:27 PM

On second thought,
what I need is a rest cure, and this is a better place than most to have one.
It occurred to me that
I'm recovering from four years of waiting to exhale
while the Trumpasaurus Rex, who did not get MY vote,
was in the Oval Office.
No wonder I feel overstressed.

Meanwhile,
the hearty extroverted kitchen staffperson
is still out and in isolation after his positive COVID test.
But the patient who tested positive (screening test)
and lives here in the in-patient residence,
has now gotten back negative results from the latest screening test,
and been released from quarantine.
Of the ten contact-traced patients isolated in their rooms,
all but three have gotten back
the negative results from their most recent tests,
and been released from isolation.
The other three, I gather, are still waiting for test results
but are asymptomatic.

Better too much caution than too little.
My latest screening-test results just came back negative (whew).


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 25 Jan 21 - 11:24 AM

The weather outside is clear sunny dry and
very pretty to look at,
and bitterly cold today.

My internal weather is dreary with despair and depression.
I better do something.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 23 Jan 21 - 11:05 PM

Yikes. I have a stuffy nose... Not a usual 1st symptom, at least.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 23 Jan 21 - 09:22 PM

It was bound to happen, and now it has.
Nearly twelve months into the United States crisis over
the coronavirus pandemic
(which actually broke out more than twelve months ago),

the twice-a-week testing here at the clinic campus
has yielded positive-for-COVID-19 test results in three persons.
One works in the patient dining-hall kitchen -- yikes!!
One is a patient living off-campus, on a day-treatment plan.
One is a patient living right here in the on-campus residence hall.

Contact tracing began once the test results came out.
At latest report,
NONE of the three individuals with positive test results
have symptoms.
All three, wherever they live, are isolating in their homes.

Here at the largest of three on-campus residences,
not only is that one patient under quarantine,
but TEN other patients are now in isolation in their rooms,
as a result of the contact-tracing work.

The staff in the nursing/mental-health-worker department
are being run off their feet,
fetching meals on trays to the patients who may not leave their rooms.
The kitchen was understaffed already, and now it's worse than before.

Well, the whole purpose of twice-weekly screening tests has been
to catch the thing early so people don't fall seriously ill.
The three people are relatively young in years, and healthy.
Ditto for the ten people in isolation.

We will see ... what we will see.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 Jan 21 - 09:15 PM

It made me feel better to see
Senator Bernie Sanders wearing his mittens at the inauguration.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 Jan 21 - 02:49 PM

I'm going to show up for one of the infamous
Community Meetings today, heaven help me.
Because I probably ought to actually say something,
short and simple.
I will catch all kinds of flack for saying it, as well.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 17 Jan 21 - 06:23 PM

Oh, dear. I can't think of anything helpful to say, but I wish I could help. You have been a sweetheart to me.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 17 Jan 21 - 04:43 PM

Last week there was another failure-to-communicate deal
from staff to patients.

Noise of the conversational variety is still going on
about the patient who was kicked out one month ago:
more generally, this patient has become representative of
all the self-harming presentations amongst all the patients,
and this is a significant percentage of all of us.
Though I say it who shouldn't,
self-harm is not one of my issues --
I have issues, all right,
but I don't cut myself etc etc, as some do,
and I do not have intrusive suicidal thoughts as some have.

So, a communiqué which I will not quote here, went out,
a very bureaucratic memorandum-sounding thing,
in writing and posted where all could see it.
And to boil it down to the fewest possible words,
the staff (group facilitators and program managers, as opposed to
psychiatrists or psychotherapists or social workers)
demanded of the patients:
Help us help you.

And the response from many of the patients is ... unfit to print.
And I for one do not blame them one bit.


At this time a little over a year ago,
when I was admitted to this clinic,
I freely said that I dreaded leaving, that I was afraid to leave.

A year later,
I am afraid to stay.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 09 Jan 21 - 01:20 AM

That sounds like a good thing.

"Is this supposed to be a good thing, Miri?"


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 08:23 PM

This week, the bedrooms at the in-patient residence
began getting re-wiring for the telephones there.
Including my bedroom.

The job took two days in my bedroom alone,
not because of what my room is like,
but because they checked the cables going from my room
through the wall down to the main electrical connections below.
And found cable with rotting wires in it,
so the cable had to be replaced ...


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 31 Dec 20 - 12:45 PM

This has been one heck of a year.
It's ten months I've been at this clinic.
The self-governing committees and activities
of the collective body of patients
has been the most heartbreaking experience for me.

One-on-one work with clinicians and therapeutic staff
has been the most satisfying part of my treatment,
although it took time and trouble
to switch from an unsatisfactory therapist and pharmacologist
to new clinicians with whom I am happier.

So, not a total loss: far from it.
Still, I am going into the New Year with a lot of sadness and disillusionment,
and seriously calculating the conditions
by which I can transition off the clinic campus.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 29 Dec 20 - 07:08 PM

Good to read, k.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 28 Dec 20 - 02:58 PM

I'm feeling better now.
There were a few rough days and nights,
but I am back on form.
Most likely will not need to increase meds dosage.
May be saying this too soon,
but feels as though I have bounced back,
and am not stuck.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 26 Dec 20 - 03:43 PM

Oy, k, wish I could visit you!


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 26 Dec 20 - 02:32 PM

My depression is suddenly worsening.
Nightmares have replaced nighttime dreaming,
and all the nightmares point to the helplessness and despair
that are presented in depression.

I'm afraid it will take something more than
a change in my dosage of meds
to intervene with my depression.

I am confident that I will survive this crisis,
but I am not so confident of how
my relationship with this instution will survive this crisis.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 25 Dec 20 - 02:00 PM

Yes, k, indeed, you certainly do.

Have strength. You are worth it.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 24 Dec 20 - 04:22 PM

This is one heck of a mixed blessing of a holiday season.

Our patient population has no shortage of adults who cut themselves.
I venture to say that there are some self-harm patients histories
that I don't even know about, to add to the ones I do know of,
since I'm not in a position to be well acquainted with all of us.

This week, however ... of all the distressing incidents here
during my months in treatment, this puts everything else in the shade.

She's still alive, as best I can make out, but she seriously attempted to damage herself permanently --
she did it with a knife that she got her hands on someplace.
Having harmed herself, and shortly afterwards the nurses got to her --
she was being closely watched already --
the ambulance was called, and off she went to the county seat,
miles up the highway, which has
a big full-service hospital with one or two locked units.
She has been there since Tuesday.
And I reckon that she will not be back here, very unlikely,
as her actions are a violation of one of several things that
one agrees not to do upon admission:

substance use, especially NOT to give substances to other patients;
sexual relations with other patients;
and self-harm, that one agrees that if one feels the urge to injure themselves, one goes to nursing right away and speaks up,
rather than actually cutting themselves.

Seriously, had she since died, the whole patient population would have heard about it, because news is travelling like wildfire, and so are
all manner of rumors, some of which had to be squashed
by announcements during community meetings.

So it's anyone's guess what happens after release from the locked ward at the big hospital:
will they send her home to her relatives?
will she go into a state institution (she's already been through that in her history)?
transfer someplace different?
But after this violation, I fear we have seen the last of her at this institution.

To add insult to injury,
there are fellow patients in patient government office positions
of maximum exposure within the collective of the patient community,
who are passing judgment on this, their former fellow patient.
Now things are already ugly here amongst the patients,
there are developments over the past two months which
I thought better of reporting to this thread,
because it's too sickening when patients bully each other verbally or in any other fashion.
But the verbal aggression in the patient community is getting so bad
that I have dropped out of patient government completely after
finishing a recent term of service.
It's the first time, since the month of my admission,
that I have not been serving in patient government committees in any way, shape, or form.

So I have stayed away from the (admittedly voluntary) community meetings and the group sessions.
But my fellow patients know me well enough from my past service,
that when I interact with them in the common areas of the patient residence,
they will volunteer the latest updates, I don't even have to ask.
So I am hearing second-hand, at best, about
how the community meetings are being dominated by fellow patients
who are highly opinionated, strongly biased, deeply insecure,
and who compensate for their insecurities by dominating every conversation.

And this week, when fellow patients speak up in support of the unfortunate former patient who cut herself and
is now in hospital,
OTHER patients interrupt them, shout and scream at them,
pile on to them, and overwhelm the entire proceedings with
their opinions about the hospitalized person's commitment to treatment --
as though this troubled person were attacking this institution on purpose,
and not acting from a sense of utterly desperate isolation,
which is my take on what happened.

I don't have to show up and listen to something so contemptible, I tell you, I really don't have to.
There is a culture at this clinic which doesn't just allow patients to verbally walk all over each other,
it rather promotes their doing so.
I have seen it happen too many times during my treatment here.
And that is one big justification for my disengaging from the patient community, as a collective,
and stepping away from patient government service.

It's roughly ten months I have been here,
and I have declared at periodic intervals that
I question the emotional and psychological safety of
the patient community at this institution.
The utter tragedies occurring this week --
I won't even speak of the OTHER patients who resorted to self-harm and who went to nursing for help recently --
serve only to confirm that something is,
to quote Shakespeare,
rotten in the state of Denmark.

The things that are good here, are very good indeed.
But the things that have gone wrong are inexcusable and indefensible.

No, I'm not running away this time.
I'm going to keep a low profile during the holiday weeks, staying here and staying in contact with staff as required,
and I'm going to take advantage of the holiday period
(when many of the clinical appointments are canceled anyhow)
to think long, hard, and carefully about
how my treatment ought to transition and step down
and get me moving back into the outside world.
Because, so help me, I deserve better than this.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 22 Dec 20 - 03:38 PM

I wish things were not as they are, sometimes.

Took my younger son, the one with all the issues, some solstice prezzies.

No thanks, not even a smile. He accepted them, though.

But I would have liked an acknowledgement.

And I would have loved a gift.

Sad, but not *depressing* so that is something.

And the quarter of a Valium before seeing him helps.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 06 Dec 20 - 09:57 PM

Careful is good. Stifled is not.

I am beginning to think carbs which are not in chocolate put me in a bad mood.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 05 Dec 20 - 09:40 PM

It's been a challenging week.
I have been expressing my anger and my attitude that
sometimes this place feels emotionally unsafe.
I get a lot of push-back.
I have not backed down yet.
However, I am discouraged enough that I have gone silent now.
I am being extremely careful now of whom I speak with.

I have to be here through the holiday season pretty much.
But I am already considering how much longer I can tolerate
living in a place where every luxury is available,
and everything you want may be asked for,
but you might have to take your business elsewhere
to find what you really need for your treatment.
From now on I have to take care of number one,
and let others go their own way.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 27 Nov 20 - 01:05 PM

Just overheard what I can only describe as a temper tantrum;
I'm sitting at the computer lounge in the residence breezeway/"Connector"
which is like a concierge station,
one can hear everything in both the new annex and the old building.
And somewhere very near the breezeway,
another patient made a scene.

Now, this is NOT the same as a seizure!
We all have witnessed enough of those in the past month.
No, this was somebody who flopped down on the floor
and bawled like a very small child.
Suffice to say that the patient
is NOT a very small child,
just behaving like one, inside an adult body.

I have to hand it to the nurse.
She was thoroughly professional with this adult patient,
talking in a calm cheerful voice,
letting the patient speak about what they were bawling about,
listening and encouraging the person for several minutes,
and then saying in the same calm cheerful voice:
"NOW, GET UP."

Let me tell you,
the nurses work hard for their money around here.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 24 Nov 20 - 09:12 PM

It's unbelievable what you can get used to.

The patient who is prone to seizures has
a strange tendency to have them at suppertime
in or around the dining area/pantry/common area.
It happened again tonight,
and there were one or two nurses there right away.

It's just so weird to be sitting there eating a fish supper
and suddenly,
I hear the hammering of feet kicking the floor
as the patient goes through another episode...

I picked up my supper tray and walked my dinner
to my bedroom
so as not to listen to the percussion serenade.
That sounds terrible.
But again, it's unbelievable what you get used to.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 21 Nov 20 - 09:22 PM

Back at the clinic, and had supper in the dining room.
Mashed potatoes:
the potatoes had been chopped up with their skins/coats still on them, and although the mashed places were creamy and even, lumps of solid potato from the big chopped-up chunks were still in place ... with the torn-up potato skins still attached. Which made the mashed potatoes even more tasty.
The green beans may have been frozen, but they certainly did not come out of a can/tin. They had been steamed, and the haricot beans were thoroughly cooked without being wilted and soggy.
Whatever cuts of beef were ground to make the meatloaf were extremely lean cuts. The seasoning was savory, and the ingredients had just enough fat and starch to make the meatloaf even and light, without making it too greasy.
One of the simplest and most delicious dinners of my long life.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: Mrrzy
Date: 11 Nov 20 - 01:44 PM

Getting help is always a sign of strength.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 10 Nov 20 - 10:38 PM

Well, the recall replacement parts order had yet to be delivered.
The car got the oil changed and stuff.
The recall service must be scheduled in the future
after the parts arrive at the service department.

Back at the clinic and having a very rough evening.
Dis-regulation, they call it here.
Miserable, I call it.
I just read that Sinead O'Connor, having planned a tour,
has called the tour off in order to enter in-patient treatment
for trauma and addiction.
If she feels any worse than I do right now,
then she needs help very badly.
I hope she gets what she needs.
I hope my treatment works.
And gets to me feeling better before the end of everything.


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Subject: RE: BS: stay afloat while others don't
From: keberoxu
Date: 06 Nov 20 - 09:20 PM

My needed service to my car could not be done all at once.
The trip away from the clinic, detailed several posts back,
was the first installment.

This weekend into Monday (first thing Monday morning) is
the second appointment to have my car serviced.

This time it is a manufacturer's recall for defective safety-belt mechanisms.
Not something I want to take chances with.
Also we will fit in part of a service-schedule tune-up and check-over.
Then, if all goes according to plan,
I pay my bill, get in my freshly-serviced car, and drive
STRAIGHT back to the clinic on the other side of the state.

The scariest part, after all, is servicing the car
so close to the Boston area -- near where I rent/live.
But a little bit of relief came my way today.
Massachusetts has just altered their INTERPRETATION of metrics --
not the numbers themselves, mind you, those stay the same,
but the INTERPRETATION has been altered.
And this more subtle and refined, less "blunt-instrument" calculation
results in an interactive map of Massachusetts municipalities
which still shows all the numbers and percentages,
but changes the color coding around.
Grey/White for a number below a certain ratio, the least infection.
Green for a low number/ratio.
Yellow is higher.
Red is highest.

On the old map, my residence town,
as well as the town where the car is being serviced,
both were RED.
On the new map, they are both yellow, not red.
So, nobody is lying to me or concealing anything,
but the interpretation is more flexible.

I listened to an ALL-THINGS-CONSIDERED broadcast with
a little piece inserted for the Massachusetts area
from the station hosting the NPR broadcast.
And the little Massachusetts piece explained
that the number of new cases of COVID-19
is now being balanced/ratioed against the population of each community,
which interpretation was not being used before.

So the coronavirus is definitely out here,
but it's easier to see which areas have more concentration
and which towns still have mostly test-negative citizens.

I'm posting this update from the hotel where I am staying
near the auto service department/center
where my car will be fixed on Monday morning.
Of course it will be a relief to get back to the clinic --
and even greater relief, all told,
should my car be so thoroughly serviced
that it will be several more months
before it needs attention like this again.


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