Saturday, 28 February 2009

Of Guinea Pigs and Mentalists

Paddi is not very impressed. Guinness is hogging the snug, and won't share.

The guinea pigs moved out of the garden and into my room this afternoon, and they seem quite content. They were purring away when they first went in the cage, but now there is a problem. I only had enough fur fabric for one snug, and they both want it. Guinea pigs don't share food and they most certainly don't share snugs! They are also argueing over the new water bottle - apparently the old one just won't do. It's been fun, especially watching Paddi running in and out of the snug repeatedly, purring and wheeking.

Today was my last day of placement, and I actually feel a little bit weepy! Lots of hugs and farewells, and I honestly will miss that ward. All I can think of now is looking towards starting my second year, and I just hope that I have more placements which I enjoy as much as that one.

Having said that, if a certain patient had followed me around for much longer complaining of being unable to cope, and begging for help, I might have thrown the towel in. The constant answering of the same questions [What should I do? Should I sit here or in my room? What do I do? I can't cope...] to someone who would not listen to the advice was starting to grate on me, after 6 weeks of being her chosen target. Honestly though, I've loved the placement, and I think the main reason that particular patient made me feel that way was that I hated to see her that agitated and distressed. I accompanied her to ECT appointments, assisted her with mealtimes and personal care, helped her in every way that I could think of, and it was nowhere near enough. Somehow, I still feel good. I left her this afternoon on the road to recovery, clean, comfortable and with a full stomach. As a nursing professional, given the situation, I feel I have done that best possible for her today, and that makes me feel good. That makes me feel proud.

Working on an Over 65's ward has made me wonder about my future health. A person's health tends to deteriorate as they age, people collecting illnesses like my mum collects shoes, and mental health doesn't appear to be an exception. I don't want to be old and crazy. Old and crazy conjours up images of conversing with felines and smelling of piss. I don't mind young and mentally interesting, most of the time.

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