Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth." Genesis 9:13

Thursday, January 19, 2012

The sad, green stethoscope

My time with Dr. Mind today was hard in a new way.  He has paperwork for long-term disability, a lot of it.  He wanted to go through some things with me and then he's going to contact Dr. Brain so they're filling things out consistently.  Pretty much what he wanted to be sure I knew was that he has to mark things as very low and that because of how the assessment is done I will come out looking extremely impaired.  I know this, it's not really a secret that I'm very limited in what I can do, but he wanted to be sure if this assessment was ever shown to me somehow that I didn't think he was picking on me.  It was hard because we had to go through many things that I had to admit that I struggle with or am not able to do yet, and many of them are pretty basic. Again, I know I can't and he knows I can't but having to verbally admit that it is still incredibly difficult to shower as often as I should is tough.  And looking at my life is kind of sad.  One of the things that is used to help show how impaired one is and compare that to the previous year is called a GAF (Global Assessment of functioning) score.  You can read more here.  I have to ask him about this because I think the number he told me I would be at is too high (he said around the low 40s but since I can't function at work, socially, with selfcare and my mood is severely impaired I think I probably am lower and if not I'm curious why).  As I told him, I know the picture is not pretty and I can face that.  I just can't move past it.

The other thing that was hard (true, but just sad to hear someone else say) was I had told him that between crying quite a bit since my last session and getting a little more/better sleep last night and making myself laugh a little I felt a tiny bit better.  Because of what we were discussing it seemed obvious that little blips of feeling better have been the only progress I've made in recent months and unfortunately there have been enough blips that even Dr. Overly Optimistic Mind isn't reading a lot into it.  I think he felt that the crying may have made me feel just well enough to have that time moment of betterness, but at the same time he kind of said that the tears are good but that I probably am going to have to stop distancing myself so much that much of my crying is my discovering that my face and shirt are wet and my nose is running.  Doing that is just another sign of my protecting myself, although crying at all or feeling angry at all or sad is good and I assume a positive step.  Oddly Dr. Mind seemed to know that I left more upset that I knew the other day and I think he left things open for me to cry some since it wasn't happening otherwise and I need to do this.  He also told me if I really want to kick my mother it's ok. (joke, but another sign that her attitude is about as annoying as I think it is).

I killed time in the city and even called my mom to have her check the forecast because I wasn't sure I was safe to stay for my class.  I was on my way from the pharmacy at one end of the city to the class diagonally across it and got a call the class was cancelled.  Fine, I had one more quick stop to make that I'd intended to use to kill the last few minutes before class; I just needed some fruit.  The roads were covered but not bad.  20 minutes later (30 at most) there had been massive snowfall and I drove home in low gear going 15-20 mph most of the 60 miles.  It took an hour to get out of the city; normally from where I left would be 10-15 minutes.

While I was bringing groceries in from my trunk I realized that I had everything out but my therapy bags and that I really needed to take the opportunity and make sure that the only thing in there that belongs to me, my personal stethoscope (read:  not cheap), was out since someday those bags will go back to the office and I've been putting off looking inside to retrieve it.  So now I have a green stethoscope in my living room and the gravity of the low functional ability we talked about plus the only reason that I would bring that inside, risking not having it at a patient's home, is that I don't need it in the car anymore.  Which was sad enough to bring on a whole lot of painfully sad thoughts and tears just below the suface (I imagine I can expect to cry in the next day or so when I least expect it.)  That stethoscope represented so much though.  It had a lot to do with feeling I was independent and competently able to identify medical issues.   It meant that I was doing something that I felt was worth the investment into owning my own, because the company provided one was not very good and I couldn't hear well through it.  It was a sign of commitment to home health as outside of school when I had a very cheap one I've never needed one.  It is something I won't get rid of.  I have no idea what I'll do with it but it is somehow symbolic of a time that I really enjoyed in my life.  (Also, I want all the therapy crap out of my car.  It takes up huge amounts of space and is doing me no good.  If I bring it inside I figure that will be the day they want it back.  It's strange what causes the most hurt; digging through my bag of vital equipment was physically painful despite knowing for months I needed to retrieve that stethoscope.

I have absolutely no idea what the other thing I meant to say was.  Guess the stethoscope threw me more than anticipated.  More later I guess.

1 comment:

Michal Ann said...

Oh man, that would hurt. Very symbolic.

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