Sunday, March 02, 2008

Struggling and Juggling

I am reading Hillary Rodham Clinton's "It Takes A Village." In one chapter she writes about the various roles women have: daughter, sister, wife, mother, career person. She mentions that she referred to "juggling" her roles in her life. She writes that Mary Catherine Bateson, anthropologist, comments that the problem with juggling is that eventually, inevitably, something gets dropped.

That is how I feel about my life right now....Work has once again become a stressful overload. The supervisor is aware, but has assigned myself and another social worker one and half wards of crisis management patients... One ward is the typical assignment. The reason is understandable, and a little complex, and I will not go into it, because it really is someone else's story, not mine. The supervisor is aware that she has asked us to take on extra, and when we get overwhelmed, we tell her what we need help with, and she divvies up the tasks to others...

But the tell tale signs of being overtaxed are there: In January, shortly after this started, I forgot to pay a bill. I go home at night and do not want to do anything. I am experiencing insomnia again. I have days of low level panic: racing heart, shakes, poor focus and concentration. I forget things. I write things that make no sense, especially when I am handwriting and not keystroking. I leave words out, or do not finish writing words. When I am speaking, I say wrong words... We have requested a meeting with the supervisor, after she finished yearly evaluations, but another crisis intervened... Ah, so it is....

Having been offered this challenge, I feel positive and confident that I am meeting it as well as I can. I am gratified that my coworkers from other disciplines are understanding, complimentary, supportive.

I like my work. I am good at what I do, I am effective with the patients who really want help, in the psychiatric prison in which I work. I feel I do important work, and if there is ever an under served population, it is prisoners...But, to continue, I have to be able to survive and function with a manageable workload. We are understaffed, and I am complimented I am called on to do more.. And I accept the challenge, but know there is a limit... And, I have to protect myself.

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Blogger Melissa said...

Thank you for sharing your blog with me. It's been fun reading and I can relate to many things, cats, social work, politics... good stuff.


March 05, 2008 12:49 AM  

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