Saturday, April 25, 2015

Sword of Damocles

       There is an unwritten rule any incidents between a penalized nursing home and the resident involved in the penalized incident occurring within six months after reporting it will be considered a reprisal. So I had a grace period of sorts coming to me during which I could catch my breath without to help me being on edge. I desperately needed a breather by this point. The feeding tube apparently was not going anywhere. I suppse I could have insisted it be remove, but I was not keen on being uprooted yet again. Going where angels fear to tread is on my business card, so I was staying put for the foreseeable future.
       It did not seem like too bad an idea at first. Management had to formulate a plan, with my approval, to remedy the neglect in helping me adjust to nursing home life. Sonya was the first person to approach me. It was after supper on the same day the inspection ended. Brock had stormed passed me for home only an hur or so before. I guess Sonya was there after hours formulating a damage control plan. She seemed like the type who would not let that sort of thing wait until Monday morning. She had done damage control with me specifically before. She was the first to speak with me after the failed attempt to have me placed in a mental institution, and she arranged for several of my requests to be granted. A peace offering, as far as I was concerned. I was not too surprised when she walked up to me as I was drinking a post-supper cola on a couch in the lobby, but I was wary. I was not sure what kind of trouble management had gotten into, but I knew I knew it was significant.
       She was friendly. I apologized for reporting the incidents to the inspectors, but explained it was necessary considering how reckless management had been. Sonya had called my experience “unfortunate” a few weeks prior, so I figured she would not argue with my rationale. She did not. She asked if I had any other problems. I said no. even though I wanted to be moved out of the room, the sped at which the door light, and nurse call buttons were fixed convinced me to drop the issue for the moment. She told me she had heard I was a writer. She had always wanted to be one herself, but found the discipline of keeping a journal hard to maintain. We had a friendly conversation, but I often wondered how much was genuine and how much was diplomatic.
       To be fair, Sonya and I developed a friendly relationship over the next few months. We would chat for a few moments whenever she spent the day at Oakhaven, which was at least once a week. It turns out we had similar taste in movies, so we would often swap recommendations. I had a knack for finding films from off th beaten path. I, in turn, was occasionally rattled when watching something she enjoyed. It was nothing terribly weird by my standards, but peculiar coming from an ultra-yuppie type like her. She seemed like the type to cry at The Notebook while sitting her her pajamas and eating ice cream from the carton. She hid her true nature well until January 2015. We shall get to that soon enough.
       Ashley was next. You may recall she was the unit supervisor. She had also been the one to most overtly show concern for how I was being mistreated during my emotional breakdown. I trusted her more than anyone else in management. I like her personally. She came to my room well after six in the evening. Apparently, a whole bunch of folks were staying late on this unfortunate Friday. She was going to interview me about my responses from earlier today. She also told me paulette would normally do this sort of ting, but not this time. Considering how many times paulette's name had come up in the inspector's interview, management did not want her to take part. The best part was the beginning. Ashley said I was obviously still mad about Caligula. What were my objections?
       “You forcibly moved me to a new room, put a violent, mentally ill man who physically attacked his previous roommate in with me, and ignored every objection I had about his dangerous, delusional behavior,” I told her, with a less than subtle attitude attitude it ought to be obvious why I was upset about the whole affair.
       She scribbled furiously on her clipboard for a long time. There was no other sounds in the room but her pen scratching across the single sheet of paper clipped. My roommate, the victim of a devastating stroke, was always silent. The atmosphere felt awkward, Thoughts of ashley's moments with caligula ran through my mind. I assume she did not want to discuss the gory details. I did not, either. Once a day was more than enough for me. But I just had to say something
         “You knew what he was,"  I said.
    “Yeah, I did,” she replied. Her voice was full of regret. She was not responsible for anything that happened. In fact, she gone to great lengths to make sure I knew that back then. I had no desire to make her feel uncomfortable, so I changed the subject.
       “What did 'medical necessity' mean?” I asked. Okay, so I did not change the subject too drastically. But this was most likely my best chance to get an answer.
       “It could mean a lot of things. A resident is contagious…” she trailed off.
       “What did it mean in this case?”
       “…..”
       “It didn't mean anything, huh?” I said in order to let her off the hook. “Just a generalization to justify doing whatever Brock wants. You wouldn't have done it, if it had been up to you?”
       ”No, I wouldn't.”
       The interview was short. I figured the isues were pretty obvious. The whole interview was probably just a formality. Oakhaven was being admonished for neglecting both me and the resident who had developed a new pressure sore. Extra attention about every little thing that could be wrng was to be expected. With that in mind, the next bit alarmed me. Monday morning brought paulette and Marlie, the health care planner, to my room in order to discuss a four point plan to improve my emotional well being.
        Oh, dear.
       They planned to build up my sense of self-worth and purpose by having me watch motivational speakers. I refused to cooperate. They also planned to encourage my interest in politics and philosophy, but that would be difficult, as Paulette declared she was the only one who knew anything about politics. I remained silent. Sessions with dr. Hiatt would continue as long as needed. I definitely agreed. I needed an outside lifeline. Plus, they figured wax philosophically with him, those sparing them. Finally, the laptop and internet were to be maintained for my use I efinitely went for that. I needed to be intellectually stimulated for the sake of my mental and emotional health. So the latter two ideas were the ones met with my enthusiasm. Naturally, oakhaven would eventually use them against me.        

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