Tuesday, April 26, 2005

If you're happy and you know it clap your hands

No, it's not sarcastic. Morning sucked. But I had that song stuck in my head all afternoon. "If you're happy and you know it, stomp your feet..." and so on. It really did cheer me up though. That and being too busy to breathe.

Today in my stage (french for "internship"...English for "work like a rented mule for free") was the busiest so far. I have never taken a client to the psychiatric emergency room and today I had to take two. I swear there is something in the air in Montreal these days that is making people crazy and unhappy. Being right in the middle of it seems to have given me an immunity for the day.

There's this idea that psychiatric hospitals want to admit everyone and lock them up in padded rooms. The reality is that they don't have a lot of beds (and no padded rooms or straight jackets) so you have to argue your way in and even then they're constantly trying to sneakily discharge people. So getting a client to in-patient status, even temporarily, involves a flurry of phone calls, waiting around, harassing the nursing staff to get your client a freaking cot so they don't have to sleep in a chair, harassing the nursing staff on the new shift and harassing the psychiatrist who is covering for the missing psychiatrist to come down and take a look and sign a form.

It was really cool in a twisted sort of way. There's a sort of serenity amongst those who are totally delusional. Of course there's a sense of pathos, desperation and hopelessness, but some people seem to transcend that. I really don't know how to describe it, but it's uplifting somehow.

So while the universe chooses to shit on me in some domains at least it is trying its best to make it up to me in others. I have a job interview for a real live social work job! Of course it's in the middle of nowhere in Massachusetts, doesn't pay phenomenally and involves tons of work, but it's encouraging to get an interview from my first application.


At 1:13 a.m., Anonymous Benjamin said...

Wow! That was a reply to your job application. And they agreed to Thursday afternoon, I hope?

It was kinda weird that I didn't speak to you today.


PS: I have been to psych hospitals, with my clients, that do indeed have padded rooms, and beds with restraints, and giant butterfly nets to catch the runaways. Well, okay, maybe there weren't any butterfly nets.

PPS: If you're happy and you know it, and you really want to show it, if you're happy and you know it clap your hands.

At 1:14 a.m., Anonymous Benjamin said...

Wow! That was aQUICK reply to your job application. And they agreed to Thursday afternoon, I hope?

(What was that Sofi was saying about proof-reading?

At 4:35 p.m., Blogger glomgold said...

This may be the first time I've ever read "psychiatric hospital" and "uplifting" together in the same sentence!
Local news stories support your assessment about the lack of facilities at these places. Here in NJ they're always throwing the criminally insane in there with the rest. Hence, the frequent reports of assaults and escapees.


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