I know it would likely be healthier for me to just let all this stuff with my brother’s clinic Terros go, and focus more on the productive aspects of his move, but I just feel like it all needs to be documented. And I guess here is the place I’m doing that. When I say documented, I also mean, exposed.
Yesterday, after a couple of emails to his terrible, inept case manager, she got back to me with this one line:
I called several times and was unable to leave a voice mail. He did show up today and I met with him.
This is her response to my question about how she expected my brother to show up for his appt. to retrieve his weekly meds (before running out) without informing him of said appointment. Of course the only reason he showed up, was because I spent nearly an entire day making phone calls trying to obtain information and finally getting the time and date for this appointment so he didn’t run out of meds (again). The case manager was unreachable, per usual.
It was also cc’d to her supervisor, as were my emails to her. Her CYA moment.
My response to her began with the sentence, “I don’t believe you.”
I called my brother’s voicemail and it’s working. I was in touch with him via my Dad’s phone all that day and he kept checking his phone for calls/messages and relaying to me what was on his phone.
She never tried calling, much less leaving a message. She’s lying.
But even if you take her at face value (which I don’t), her own story is she couldn’t get this critical information to my brother so she did nothing further. She didn’t try phoning my Dad to tell him (who she knows he lives with and has his number), emailing me, phoning me, nothing. But I’m sure she did document it as “billable hours”! The bare minimum she claimed to have done.
Also, while John was sitting in the waiting area yesterday, waiting for his appt. to get his meds, my father who was sitting a few feet away, saw the case manager “come out to retrieve another patient” from the waiting area and stop to say hello to my brother.
She has somehow parlayed that little breeze-by as a “meeting”. Oh I feel certain she documented it as billable hours as a full blown case management meeting. I’m also sure she didn’t realize, when she wrote me that email, that I was aware she had seen my brother in the waiting area as my father had already detailed the visit for me.
God I hate liars.
Anyway, John did fill out the paperwork to be transferred to another team. Hopefully that happens, because even if it’s just another month or so before we can extricate him, it’s still four weeks of having to live in that mine field.
The hospital social worker has escalated all of this too on her end and has been sending me emails about who is being informed of what. She’s not happy at all about this.
I’m just keeping records of everything and once John is freed from their clutches, a full report will be made.
Then I’ll be able to focus all my undivided energy on setting him up here. So many of his day to day activities will be met at the Community they are moving to. They are opening up their classes and activities next month after a year of Covid closure. Right on time.
There are all kinds of things he can get involved with from art classes to movie nights to special dinners to outings. My Dad is especially interested in the courses provided by visiting Bucknell professors and similar outings which they provide transportation for. It’s going to be so good for them.
We will also obtain case management for John here and of course all the medical needs, including Psychiatric. They have a medical liasion who is an RN at the community who will start working on getting all that set up for both of them before they even arrive. It’s pretty amazing what they offer. They will even provide them transportation from their home to the community building in a 6 seater golf court so they don’t have to drive over. They are walking distance from our beautiful library, which also hosts computer classes for my brother to attend. He’s super psyched about that as he’s been taking computer classes. We will get them set up with wifi and a laptop. Major upgrade.
All of these layers of support will be so welcomed. And it’s all underway. We should have the keys by Wednesday next week/Thursday at the latest. And I’ll be getting the supplemental furniture and furnishings set up. There will be champagne involved next week--my Dad requested a live Facetime session when we cross the threshold.
I dropped the check off yesterday, got the contract, just waiting on the last wire transfer and we will have the keys! We bought a bottle of Veuve Cliquot a few months ago, that we still have sitting in our wine frig. I do see us popping it over there in the empty kitchen. 😀
Also! My sleep is definitely improving. The Dr. definitely got my attention when he used some word like “psycho-physiology” describing how my insomnia got so deeply ingrained. He listened long enough and educated me well enough that I left there trusting him, which is honestly rare for me when it comes to doctors.
This morning I was reflecting on how familiar this felt to me–but on the other side of the paperwork.
During my thirty-year practice as a bodyworker, I realized I had a secret weapon.
I could get people to trust me very quickly. I don’t know if that’s just my normal personality, or a skill set I developed in that role, but I took my time, listening to every word they said, writing it all down and asking lots of questions in the intital appointment. I didn’t rush it and insured them their participation and input was valuable to me (which it was).
I then displayed (because I possessed) a deep, calm confidence that I could help them (if I did which was the vast majority of the time). AND that their body also possessed a deep well of information that would be our guide, which I would trust, to help them get back on track.
I always started the relationship with that confidence and that respect right out of the gate and something about that combination allowed my clients to trust me, and the process I was guiding them in to.
Most of the time when they found me, they were pretty desperate and in a lot of long term chronic pain. Had been through many things that had not been helpful. They were understandably skeptical.
But I knew that their trusting me was going to allow their guard to drop, and the magic would begin.
I always–every single time– coached them on not seeking improvement, but seeking change. That we were simply looking to break up the patterns of dysfunction, so their innate body-wisdom could sneak back in through those cracks and start taking over.
I’m glad I’m writing this all out, as I rarely think about my prior life as a therapist. But this process is exactly what is occurring for me now.
I may not have fully felt confident in trying this non habit-forming medication (for a relatively short time–my goal is to get back to sleeping and get off all medication) as I tried two doses before, didn’t sleep and felt like death in the morning.
But I did leave feeling like I trusted this doctor and I would submit to his expertise. He runs a damn Sleep Center for God’s sake–how can I rationalize not trusting him?
Since I made the decision to trust his guidance, do exactly what he said, and know that what’s happening is as much a deep psychological problem as chemical (not saying you can just decide to change these kinds of unconscious patterns by just deciding to–you have to let go and let your mind decide on its own to shift) I have started sleeping better.
He said the morning grogginess would start fading in about three days and I woke up today feeling pretty chipper.
I guess what I’m saying is it’s all about trust. And all about just letting myself be steered, then the magic starts happening. I’m stubborn. This is big.
The very first time I took this med a couple weeks ago (prescribed by my wonderful nurse practitioner), I lay wide awake tossing and turning for five hours then was a zombie the next day. The next night, basically the same thing. I gave right up on it.
But now, I’m sleeping 2-3 hours at a time and getting pretty easily back to sleep. It’s changing and getting better. I’m feeling hopeful.
Those are the great ends of the spectrum.
The tail that’s dragging though is the care my brother is receiving which is abysmal.
He got up yesterday and right away called his case manager, leaving a message on her voicemail that he needed an appt. with the nurse in order to obtain his meds. I know he did this because I was on the phone with my Dad and heard him in the background leaving that message.
He went all day not hearing back.
I wrote his social worker from the hospital basically detailing how her discharge plan fell off the rails with Terros right out of the gate, really just to let her know and to document it. I ended my email saying I did not expect a response, this was just to inform her.
She wrote me back, appalled, sent my email to the director of the whole shebang and gave me a number for the Clinical Director of John’s entire clinic. Oops! That lady did not end up liking that one bit.
I called the Director who let me know she would get right on it, make sure he had his appointments and the best way to get the information to him. I asked her to email me as John has a new phone and is hard to reach. I would make sure he got the info.
Mind you, he runs out of meds on Monday. It was Thursday and they are closed on the weekend. We have one day to get him in there–Friday. She assured me it would be settled by the end of the day.
The end of the day came and you guessed it–nothing.
I called her cell phone again and could hear she was driving. She was annoyed. Asked for an update and she said she had punted it to the terrible, incompetent case manager. I let her know John had called her and heard nothing. I reiterated he went in the hospital for five weeks because he went off his meds and here he was set to run out of them.
She said they were on it. I had a few choice words about the case manager like “incompetent” “terrible employee” etc. and the phone call ended abruptly. I’ve simply had it with these people. I left that thinking it all trickles down from the top. Even the Clinical Director doesn’t care about the patients there. I get it.
So I ended up calling back to the clinic to get anyone, absolutely anyone in the building who could facilitate my brother picking up his meds the next day.
I finally got likely the one and only competent person in the facility, who looked him up and saw he indeed has an appointment on the books for Friday at 10:30.
But no one told us that. And it was the next morning. They went to the trouble to schedule the appointment, but not tell the patient.
How did they expect John to be at that appt. when they never informed him of it? Look at all the great lengths I went to to simply get that one nugget of information.
The case manager kept saying in the heated staffing on John while he was in the hospital “well he didn’t show up for his appointments!” as the reason his medication got messed up.
I get it now. She does the bare minimum on paper, to prove those billable hours, then no follow-through with the actual patient. She scheduled the appointment, but never told us about it. So when he doesn’t show up, he gets marked as a no-show and no one questions it. Ya know, these unreliable mentally ill people.
I want to scream.
I got super sad yesterday thinking of all the other people under her who she’s playing this game with, who are getting sicker, not getting services, because they don’t have someone like me hounding her to do the basics of her own damn job. And even her boss at the highest level doesn’t care. It’s a very dangerous trap.
We have about a month to navigate this I think before getting him here. I spoke with John yesterday and we both agreed he can and needs to ask for a new case manager for just that month. This woman is unsafe.
So he will be doing that today when he goes in to get his meds. Even if he gets a similarly incompetent person (as I said to my Dad, I truly can’t imagine anyone being worse than her), it sends a message.
And when this is all over, my Psychologist husband is doing something called “red-lining” this facility. I think the social worker at the hospital is engaged in something similar. At least we will be out of there, but in all good conscience for the rest of their vulnerable population,we have to speak out.
Ok, with that all being said (much of the reason I document on here is also to keep a written record), this is a gorgeous day here. I’m so happy and relieved we can start moving them here in a concrete way now.
I have so many thoughts of my Dad sitting on my patio, enjoying my flowers doing his crossword puzzle. Inviting my brother over for TV watching and pizza. Country drives showing them all these views I’ve grown to love. Simple pleasures like that.
Knowing my Dad will get to live out his life in this kind of comfort is such a relief to us all.
And when I thanked my husband the other day for so much help he’s giving my family he responded “our family”.
You see his parents died so young (both were gone by the time he was fifteen), he never got to experience an aging parent situation. He considers this a gift. He’s a true gem of a human. Of all the disastrous choices I made in dating–which were admittedly about 99% of them–I just needed one good choice and I nailed it.
He heads back there in a little over a week and will handle most of the logistics they need on their end. Then we will fly my brother (and likely their cat) out here, and my husband is going to drive my brother’s car out here, taking a cross country road trip with my Dad. They are both really looking forward to it.
Thanks for coming along for the ride everyone. It’s been a circus, fun-house, roller coaster and glorious ferris wheel all wrapped up in to one.
And my shingles are almost entirely improved. Hooray for no long-term effects.