Tensions simmered almost immediately. The most obvious was Brock's quiet animosity towards me. Brock never admitted a mistake and never apologized for anything, so most people just tolerated rather than challenge her for any of her actions. I, a peon nursing home resident, dared take her on for endangering me and other helpless residents. There was not much she could do about it other than stew over it, and stew over it she did.. My interview with the Department of Health and Environmental Control took place in the middle of March. Brock would not do so much as greet me until June. The cold shoulder was fine with me. I did not need the stress of engaging the drama that would surely come from interaction with Brock.
The largest source of tension was my laptop use. Specifically, privacy issues. When Oakhaven initially installed Wi Fi, it was only available in two spots—the telephone room and dining hall. The rationale for putting Wi Fi as far away as possiblefrom my room was to break my reclusive habits. It is a common mistake to assume depression in an introvert can be cured by forcing them to be around people. The strategy is doomed to failure, but people still do it. Introverts like me, who can better deal with problems alone or one-on-one at most, suffer for it. But I digress. The point is, when using the internet, I was either sitting at a desk in the telephone room with the screen visible to the high traffic hallway or in the Oakhaven social hub that was the dining hall. As you might expect, there was a small army of curiosity seekers. Staff, residents, and visitors alike. I tolerated the matter as best I could so as not to rock the boat so soon after punching a whole in the side.
Later inquiries as to why I could not have a hot spot in my room change from curing my reclusive behavior to being a matter of cost. This baffled me. From the day Wi fi was installed until the day I was booted out the door, I was beaten over the head with how the wi fi was exclusively for me, no one else used it, and I was practically bankrupting Oakhaven with it already. You think I am kidding, but I will post documents in an upcoming posts which prove they made these accusations. If this were all true, it would have only enhanced the argument to wire my room exclusively, but such did not happen yet.
Did the Wi Fi location cause problems beyond privacy? Of course. Particularly with one resident who liked to use the community phone for hours on end. Whenever someone wanted to use the phone, I would ask if they would like for me to leave. Some said yes, and I would do so. Some said they did not mind me staying. Quite a ew of those asked for my help using the phone. I dialed numbers more often than I can count. I even held the phone for one lady while she talked to her daughter. Yes, I felt odd at the privacy invasion, particularly when residents who probably were not in their right minds were giving me permission to be there. So when the lady who used the phone for hours on end complained to paulette I need to “share the room” better, I decided I would just leave anytime anyone wanted to use the phone.
Early on in our little dance of swapping in and out of the room, I witnessed this lady and her friend repeatedly hit another resident one night in order to drive her out the lobby so they could have the place to themselves. The ldy they hit was severely mentally challenged, nearly blind, and nearly deaf. She could not defend herself physically or verbally. I told the two ladies off, then reported them the next day. You are supposed to remain anonymous when reporting such incidents, but I obviously could not have been in this case. From then on, the lady did everything should could to make my use of the telephone room impossible. I would have to leave multiple times in one sitting. She had the custodian move all of my stuff out the room once. The custodian then proceeded to scold me for leaving my laptop on the desk no where near the phone where the lady would be. She scoued around for other residents for whom I had caused trouble, but could not find any. Finally, paulette finally asked what all her demands were. Essentially, it was for me to leave every time, as many times as she wanted, and leave no trace of myself. I agreed, if for no other reason than I could now direct her to paulette for any future complaints rather than listen to her complaints myself.
I will have more about Paulette and this matter in my next post.
But my use of the internet was not just a matter of physicality. Brock was watching my Facebook. She had two accounts herself One had two friends. The other was completely blank. She used them to spy on staff's personal pages. Using a blank page to spy on others is an express violation of Facebook's terms of service, as is the mere act of having two personal pages. But I digress. She has called staff members into her office before over items posted on their pages, often assuming said post is about her. It never is. One day in may, a CNA was questioned over a photo I posted after she asked me to 'post something funny on her wall.” It was this:
Brock wanted to know if we were mocking something that actually happened to a resident. At the time, I thought Brock's suspicion was funny. It did not register on me that she was looking at my page, too. Privacy settings on Facebook are a joke, you know. I guess I was being blissfully naive in thinking my privacy was being respected on any level. Or I was being respected at all. Case in point, the next post.