Sometimes, life is tough. Like, not just "oh, this piece of meat is tough to chew, tough," but gut wrenchingly, heart breakingly tough. Sometimes, it's all we cal do to get through the day.
Yesterday was one of those days.
For the past six weeks or so, I have been taking my Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) classes. They are long, boring classes and we have been learning how to take care of people in assisted living facilites. Last night, we went to our first night of clinicals.
In the time I was there, my partner and I were assigned to 3 people. The first thing we did for all three of them was shower them. Next we took them to the dining room to eat, and then got ready for bed, taking their vital signs as we went. Along the course of the evening, we were caring for various other people as well, anyone who needed us basically. In all essence we had become the assistants for the assistants, if that makes any sense.
When we first arrived, it was around 3. In our area, the sun is beginning to set around 4 at this time of the year. For anyone not familiar with nursing homes, let me give you a little rundown of sundowning. People don't like being in nursing homes. They are stripped of all dignity and freedom, left to rot by their families. Many of them become confused after they have been there for a while, and are not 100% sure where they are. Around sundown, those who are confused or just plain ornery will sundown. They become the most aggressive, the most active, the most difficult that they are all day. Many start screaming for help, and the others just become completely unresponsive.
While we were there, before we had really gotten the chance to do much of anything, a woman wheeled her way down the hallway at us, screaming for help. She had to go home and make dinner, for her husband. Me and the girl I am partnered with just stood there. We didn't know what to do, how to respond. Thankfully one of the employees came to our rescue, and quietly explained that her family knew she was there and she would be staying in the room they had prepared for her tonight. After much fighting, the woman settled down some and headed back to the lobby. The worker gave us a sad look and explained that her husband used to take care of her, but he passed away. At this point, I was already ready to burst into tears.
I can't even continue about the rest of it. All I can think at this point is that I have 10 more hours to go, and I'm not sure if I will make it.