Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Invested and Involved

It feels weird to not want to cross the days off the calendar. In the past 2 1/2 years we have done so many cycles it feels like I should be counting down to something. Counting down to my next lining check, my start day for meds, my transfer date, etc. Watching the days pass is strange. I do have an ultrasound that I am looking forward to this week, but it's just a different type of anticipation. 

My ob's office called today to say my doctor will be out of town for the next week. They scheduled me a different time for the ultrasound this Friday and after I will meet with a different doctor. W isn't going to be able to make it, but I think my MiL is going to come. Undressing in front of her should be interesting, but I had 1 other vaginal ultrasound with her in the room before so I guess it's no big deal. I remember last time she folded my underwear for me : )

Last week work was particularly emotionally draining. When you go into someone's house and see them multiple times a week you get involved and invested in their families. I don't think I would be a good therapist if I wasn't involved, but sometimes it means being involved in things that are not directly related to the child. 

One family I work with fosters children. They currently have 5 children in their care, 4 of which are under 2 1/2 in addition to their own 3 children. I am currently working one of the little ones. The older one in care is around 8 years old and was having some issues. He sees a psychologist and it was recommended he go to a treatment center to address these issues. Well, after quite a few weeks there he finally came home last week.

 It was so upsetting to see how heavily medicated he was. He sat across from me at the table, totally out of it, slurring his speech, trying to talk to me. He could barely function. I know this child and know that he is highly functional normally. I was so upset with the way he was acting and the foster family agreed. We spoke about it in depth and they were glad to have validation of their feelings.

Another story involves a different family. Many grandparents care for their grandchildren, so I do therapy at their houses. I have one little boy I have been seeing for almost a year and I do at least 1 therapy session a week at grandma's house. We have developed a really great relationship and I really like her. Unfortunately, her husband was diagnosed with colon cancer this past fall after a routine colonoscopy. Then about a month ago I got a text from mom that they needed to cancel the session at home due to a "family emergency". When I went to grandma's house the next day I asked if everything was okay. She told me that the mom of the little guy I see had a miscarriage the previous day. Most recently, grandma went for a routine mammogram and it was discovered that she has breast cancer. Last Friday she had a lumpectomy and she will do radiation and chemotherapy. 

In one day I was at the house with the foster care child that was too heavily medicated, and then went to see the grandmother for the first time since her diagnosis (2 days before her surgery). I left both homes with a heavy heart. When W called me on his lunch break I broke down in tears. I know I'm extra emotional lately, but it was a really rough day. 

Since then, the child in foster care has been seen to a different treatment center to ween him off of a lot of the meds he was on. I spoke with the family and was so glad to hear this. The grandmother had her surgery on Friday and I probably won't see her for a while. I will see her grandson and his mom tomorrow and will be sure to ask about her and send her my best. 

Even though my job can be tough, it's also incredibly rewarding and fulfilling. I really wouldn't change it, despite the way it makes me feel on certain days. Even though there are bad days from time to time, the majority of my days are great. 

On another note, the kids I work with love the fact that I'm always snacking lately. I often share some of my snacks and they think it's the greatest thing ever. I really do enjoy building relationships with these children and their families. 


  1. My sister is a therapist and mostly works with families who are trying to turn their lives around to get their kids back from foster care. She tells me stories of things that happen and it breaks my heart. I admire people like you who can do that kind of work. We need more people like you in the world!

    and the snacking thing is really cute!

  2. Wow. What you do takes a lot of strength!!

  3. I don't know that I could do that job but I greatly admire those that can. It is so sad that little boy was on so many meds. That just seems like such a failure in the system some how. I'm so glad these kids have someone like you in their life to help look after them.