While it’s been way too long since I’ve sat down and written a post.
What’s Been Going On
I know I said in another recent post that I was back and all the other fun stuff, however my job kind of took a turn for the stressful and I was functioning on very little energy.
For those of you who didn’t know, I was working as floor staff at an inpatient psychiatric facility that focused heavily on trauma. My clients were between the ages of 13 and 16, all with incredibly tough pasts, and some with additional behavioral-based problems as well.
This job at first was a place where I could use my psychology background to help teens and be a positive influence in their life. Though after July, the environment of the job changed drastically. Several of our clients were coming in with undiagnosed TBI or more behavioral than psychological problems, something our facility doesn’t really have resources for. Additionally, we began to lose several of our strong staff members around this time.
The facility was also some making changes at the higher level and due to budget cuts closed down two of the male mental health units. This meant that we were supposed to get the additional staff on our unit, however, our kids began to act out against staff they didn’t like and well many of the staff quit. This left August incredibly short-staffed and the current floor staff working some extra hours.
Towards the end of August, we found out that the higher-ups needed the girls mental health department to acquire more clients, even though we still didn’t have a solid staff. We had gotten a decent amount of staff at this point, though it was mixed with those who were new to the unit and new to the job altogether, so the only other seasoned staff and I were left to train the new staff in and work with the new clients. We then got flooded with clients, getting new clients about once a week. This flood of new clients meant that we didn’t have time to teach the clients the rules and expectations and build rapport before having another new client. This lead to clients not listening to staff and acting out due to not having the resources to get things together.
All of this lead to a perfect storm of pure, utter, chaos in our department for about two weeks. I know I was not the only staff entering in work in a terrible mental place or feeling physically ill at the prospect of walking in the door. My anxiety was at an all-time high and I even had one shift where I had a panic attack in the bathroom (something I’ve only experienced like twice before). I did not feel like I was getting a lot of support from my other staff as I would have my manager tell me to “figure it out” and “handle it” and due to this all happening around Labor Day, most of the actual higher-ups were out of the office.
I had already put in my notice back in August, but boy this chaos made it hard to show up for my final two weeks. I did, mostly because I didn’t want to leave my co-staff stranded, but it took such a toll on me. I did end my time at this job on a high note, going in on my birthday (September 12th) and tie-dying shirts with the kids. I brought in cupcakes and was able to have a little celebration with them and also say goodbye to them on a more positive note. That day was the first day in over a month I did not dread going to work, showing me I made the right choice to cut my time their short.
Now, I’m prepping for a move back to California and getting a fresh start out there. Since I have this job on my resume for some psychology at work, I don’t have as much pressure on me to get a psychology job. Also, with minimum wage being significantly higher in California than here in small-town Minnesota, many of the entry-level and minimum wage jobs pay comparable to what I was making at my previous job. This means I have many options for jobs, as I just need to cover my current bills and extra money goes into either bookish stuff or paying my loans down faster.
So What Does This Mean for the Blog?
I plan to continue my sporadic uploads through the end of September since I’m moving on the 20th and driving out to CA and then using the end of September to do some serious job hunting and settling in. Also, contemporaryathon is September 23rd-29th and I’m actually going to try to participate in that too.
I do have some overdue reviews I plan on writing and scheduling before I leave, should time allow, but I probably won’t get back into regular content on this trip. Though I’ll definitely try!
I’ve missed being a part of the online book community as I have not been uploading, blogging, or on Instagram at all due to the lack of energy after work. I’m hoping that this new start with less chaotic hours will be a less taxing affair and will allow me to go back to being a part of this community!
Thank you to those of you who have stuck with me during this last year. I hope to be back to regular content next month!