Thursday, August 17, 2006

A Day's Work

People often say to me - "wow, you really do the hard work. You're such a good person to be doing what you're doing." To them I say take a look at this:

Organization: New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
Job Type: Full-Time
Description: Provide discharge planning services on Rikers Island to inmates with severe and persistent mental illness. An MSW and valid CSW or LMSW plus experience in mental health, case management, or social work and knowledge of community mental health resources, substance abuse and entitlements programs are key. If interested, please apply online at Enter JVN #109439 in JVN search bar.

The person who does THAT - well, heck - THAT is somebody who deserves one HUGE pat on the back. Shit. What a job.

My job it seems, lately, has become smelly. I get all the smelly clients. No joke. Each one smells worse than the next... The scary thing is, I seem to be getting used to it! I have the smelly client with the roaches, the smelly client with the majenta walls and dark blue ceiling, the smelly client who has not done any laundry in at least three months. Yep. Got 'em.

Today I had the special treat of taking a client to the bank to close her account. Her home attendant stole from her. $2,000. She was so distraught. This woman had actually been warned about the home attendant - by her cousin -- but since the H.A. had never done anything to HER - decided to keep the H.A. So, she is even angrier because she put her trust in this woman... and it was abused.

I tell you, though, it's so nice to get the concrete result of what you do. So often, you know, you don't. But the fact that I was the first person this client phoned, and that she called me "My Social Worker.".... It felt good.

And a secret: I still get a little buzz when one of my clients refers to me as "My Social Worker." Yep. I just do.

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