Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Things I want to do

1. Shoot guns
2. Join Crossfit
3. Re-join yoga
4. Go kayaking
5. Buy a bike
6. Learn to skate (hah)
7. Learn to rock climb better (double hah) and actually go
8. Visit SLC
9. Decorate/furnish my living room
10. Buy all the therapy and assessment tools I'd ever need

11. Make enough money for 1-10

Saturday, August 4, 2012

My Second Mama

Took the train down to the airport last night and met my aunt on the platform. This is the woman who taught me about independence and responsibility, who gave me the drive to be who I am today. This woman is the epitome of sound mind, intelligence, creativity, and diligence, traits that I strive to embody.

Last night, we had a 3.5 star dinner over a 5 star conversation, where I learned boulder sized nuggets of family information, that had somehow evaded my knowledge these last 28 years. It never ceases to amaze me the complexities and underpinnings of my family history. The Menzie (Kovac) blood is dwindling down with the limited offspring produced in the last 50 years, and with the increasing elderly population, all that will be left are a total of six. It is strange to think that I am the oldest of the current generation, and that if I have children, they will be the first grandchildren and nieces and nephews of this generation. And if I have children, they won't know any of the extended Menzie (Kovac) family.

Off to show off the sites of Seattle to my second mama!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Pioneer day, and I've been in Seattle a month, today

And I don't get this ridiculous Utah holiday off in Washington? No, no I do not. Really for us non-Mormons, it's just another excuse to get drunk an blow shit up. Instead, today I will be getting back on the good girl horse. Today I'm going to the gym, conveniently located in my building. Then I'm going to detox my pain ridden back in the hot tub, conveniently located outside my building. It's about time I start taking better care of myself, and reduce the stress of therapy, productivity, bills, new city lifestyle, and old city homesickness. I've always thrived in routine, but lately my routine consists of work and weeds, work and weeds. And the ever present traffic. Man, I fucking hate traffic. Shoulda listened to my dad about moving back into a big city. Happy 1 month anniversary to Seattle and I. It's a tough relationship, Seattle thwarts my ability to find like minded folk and I thwart Seattle from my social presence. Double edged cliched motherfucking sword.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

I thought grad school ended with graduation...?

It's nearly 1am on a Monday night, and I am still awake. Watching a thrilling redbox movie? Reading a Tom Robbins book? Talking on the phone with my best friend? No. I am doing research. SLP research. Looking up any and all information regarding treatment of geriatric patients with zero verbal communication skills. Reading articles and presentations and school books. Writing therapy lesson plan ideas. And feeling like I actually have not graduated. If there is anything my externships taught me, it's that they didn't teach me enough. Well, just not for this patient care setting. I miss Intermountain Outpatient Neuro Rehab and the Voice and Swallowing Center at LDS Hospital. I even miss the University of Utah Speech Language and Hearing Clinic, AND my little kid clients!

Fellow clinicians who may be reading this: feel free to send me any therapy ideas for nonverbal patients with only stereotypies, some gestural expression, and fair comprehension skills.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

the no good very bad horrible terrible day

If you are an SLP, and you haven't worked in a SNF or assisted living facility, with the geriatric patient, and you cry easily, then I highly DO NOT recommend working there. I have never had this experience before, of working with unmotivated patients. No one wants my help (save for one particular voice patient), they physically push me away because they don't have the communication skills to tell me to go away. My productivity SUCKS. I feel like I am sinking into a hole of professional despair.

I miss scheduled therapy visits. A routine. Materials galore. Resources handed to me from supervisors. Patient histories discussed. Full evaluations given. Instrumentation. Guidelines that make sense. Shelves of MATERIALS. Ideas. I miss Intermountain HealthCare. I miss the University of Utah. I'd rather spend my evenings creating my own therapy materials and piecing together therapy ideas from the closet at the school clinic, rather than reading through my school notes for some semblance of a therapy plan idea and then not having any materials to use for the pseudo plan that I come up with.

After being completely ignored by one patient, then told she wanted to go back to sleep by another patient, and then physically pushed by another, I couldn't help but cry. And I couldn't stop crying. I'm not a person who cries at work! I'm a good therapist. I've been praised to no end by my supervisors. I thought working in the school system was hard and disadvantaged, but now, I would definitely choose that over this. And it's only been my 3rd day.

Seattle is proving to be one of the greatest emotional challenges I've faced.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

28 & a coffee, please?

Coffee, bagel with cream cheese.
Brand new binders organized by disorder.
Working. Hopefully solo.
Picking up Kristin downtown (yay!)
Here's to hopefully not having the worst birthday.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Fun Fact

Sales tax is 9.5% (in case that bullshit interests you).

Welcome to Seattle, Menzie

Saturday, June 23, 2012: Woke up unwillingly, but cheerful, and with high hopes. Happy to be next to a darling chap, who came to breakfast with my family and best friend. Breakfast, albeit, delayed (good job, Joe, you drunken dork), was delicious, and funny, and light-hearted, for the most part. Leaving was... less so. Seeing my father cry-- not easy. Crying-- less easy. Relaxing at 1122 Westminster was nice, but not so nice to leave. Coffee helped. Driving did not. It was a long, lonely drive, rather than a fun, adventurous drive as other may claim. I pit-stopped in mid-Idaho for gas and nutrient replenishment-- aka, I went a place called The Hungry Red Neck Cafe... for a grilled cheese sandwich-- not the most Vegetarian friendly. I arrived in Pendleton, OR around 8:30pm Pacific Time, and checked into my hotel. From there I went to a place called the Great Pacific Wine & Coffee Co. for a baked vegetarian sandwich, a few Rogue beers, and some live folk music (all of which, in my unfortunate, emotional state, made me cry).

Sunday June 24, 2012: Driving, driving driving. Skip to arriving at the arranged sublet in the U-District. Skip to AWFUL. Skip to leaving the AWFUL, arrange sublet in the U-District. Skip to crying, conversation with the best aunt in the world, and finally arriving at the Homewood Suites Hotel by Hilton on Pike St. in downtown Seattle-- where I've been for the last 5 days.

Monday-Friday June 25-29, 2012: Apartment searching galore. Of particular notice is the fact that I found out I needed my WA state license to practice Speech Language Pathology before starting work (which I found out on Tuesday, and I was supposed to start work yesterday). With strings and things pulled from this way and that way, I made the necessary connections, and dotted by i's, crossed my t's, and figured out all the issues, getting my license approved and ready for action. So as of today I am ready to work. I start on Monday (Go me and my assertive action). Another plus for today... I chose an apartment, I applied, I was accepted, and I move in on July 6th. It's at 1000 8th Avenue. (Look it up) It's a nice apartment complex, originally from the 1950's I believe, but there have been tremendous remodels and upgrades. My apartment is a 1 bedroom with 590 sq ft, new carpet, new appliances, washer/dryer, and I can't wait to move in. My building has a parking garage (paid for), a HUGE gym, an outdoor heated pool, a community room with plenty of seating and TVs that can be rented for parties, as well as a rooftop garden and seating area. It's very nice. I think I made the right choice.

Overall: Seattle is big, subway-less, confusing, full of potentially rad people (how to find and meet them... another problem in itself), lonely, different, inclusive of full strength(+) beer, and curious. Hopefully, I'll find a place here. But it's not Salt Lake. It's not Boston, either. It's not easy. But, I'm working on it.