First the feeling down part...I recognize that today would be the day that S would have returned after being away for a month. And he's most likely not. And I'm incredibly sad about this, as I miss him. And I've been beating myself up about being sad because it's not like he's chosen a family illness to vex me. Still, I realize that I've really been looking forward to his return.
Now on to work. This week has been a particular challenge to me. Actually, the feeling started last week, and I recognize that the escalation of my feeling crappy about my work comes from the above situation as well.
But today, I'm just wondering why the hell do I keep coming to this job? Let me give you a flavor of what I get to deal with. I get to be responsible for holding people to coming in for appointments or trying to uncover the "psychosocial barriers" to their non-adherence. Ostensibly, once I uncover those barriers, I'm supposed to fix them. If I can't fix them, I'm also apparently responsible for defining and holding clinic policies, which more often than not pisses off said non-adherent people.
I'm also responsible for helping people arrange for dialysis when they are on travel. Sometimes I'm given adequate notice, but sometimes not. Today, in a particular show of temper, I got yelled at by a patient because I wasn't able to find a closer unit to where he would be staying. And this on a day when I was so done with being here to begin with.
I help people learn about different dialysis modalities...well, this week, I didn't motivate our nurses to do education quickly enough for one patient, and now she's angry with me. This is a patient who also got angry with me for travel related issues at Thanksgiving.
I work with a hard population of people, I realize. These folks are poor, some have addictions, many have history of being abused or abusing others, and there are a few with significant criminal pasts. And then there are those who are paranoid or hearing voices and being asked to come to a busy clinic and be stuck with needles (really big needles) and sit for 3-4 hours while blood circulates outside of their body.
And that's just our patients.
I know that I signed up for hard work when I became a social worker. I know that somebody like HippyChick actually works in more challenging situations than I do. But today I'm feeling more than a little tired of doing my best to do good things for people and feeling like I only get yelled at for it.
Okay, I'm going to go now, with my pity party, and try to get through the day.
UPDATE: S is coming home today. He's "on-call" with his family so may have to leave again shortly, but he'll be in tonight, and we get to see each other tomorrow. Yay! Shorty - read the comments and I'll attempt an answer at the questions you asked.