22 May 2018

Proverbs

This summer, I am working my way through the Proverbs.  These were written by King Solomon as guidance for his children and the young adults in his life.  I certainly could use some wisdom.   In each chapter of Proverbs, I'm working through these steps:

  1. Pray first.  I pray that God will open my eyes and help me to gain and apply the wisdom.  
  2. Content:
    1. I summarize each verse or section of the chapter. (Google BSF homiletics)
    2. I look for particular themes that I chose to focus on
      1. Attributes of God
      2. Success/Blessing vs Destruction
      3. Fools/Scoffers - recognizing them by their behavior, responding to a fool
      4. Money
      5. Work
      6. Marriage/Love
      7. Worry/Stress/Fear vs. Peace
      8. Family/Parenting
      9. Heart/Mind
      10. Words/Speech 
      11. Sin/Evil
      12. Wisdom/Knowledge
  3. What is the overall principle? The purpose?  Write questions to apply.
  4. What will I apply to my life? Specifically.
  5. Pray again.
I am particularly interested in reading about fools.   The original Hebrew had many words for fools and each had a slightly different meaning.  However, I'm going to be looking at fool as a general term.  The answers I seek are... Are there people who truly are "fools?" How do I recognize them? How do I respond to them?  Is it even right to call them a fool?   

I suppose there have been difficult people around for all time.  I'm sure Solomon dealt with more than his fair share since he was a king.  I can think of a few people who have caused me frustration, anger, or pain because of poor choices/responses/behavior.  This is my quest to figure out how I should behave.    I'm also doing Internal Family Systems therapy during my therapy sessions.  It's quite interesting, but that's a subject  for another time....

20 May 2018

Burnout, Therapy, and the Proverbs.

What a long time since my last post!  I haven't been doing much of anything except working and taking care of my toddlers!   My kids are 3 and almost 2...  My oldest son, Cheetah, is no longer in our home, but I still keep track of him.  He has been struggling, but his story is his own...and I will not share it here.  Regardless, prayers for him are always welcome.

6 years ago in May, I graduated veterinary school.  The first 2 years were brutal.  There were many times I thought I would just walk away from it completely.  It is a heavy burden to carry the weight of beloved pets' health.   Every single day.  I took it hard when owners didn't follow my recommendations, their pet declined, and then sometimes responded in anger toward me.  I emotionally handled work even worse when pets didn't respond to the "gold standard."   Since those first 2 years, I've learned to detach a little (and had 2 babies and an unknown number of foster children).  I'm learning to accept my limitations.  I'm not omniscient or omnipotent.  I can't always know the answers, and I certainly can't know the answers when recommendations for diagnostics are not followed.  There are clients who are just mean, demanding, unreasonable, and just plain ignorant but unwilling to learn.  There are clients who are amazing, kind, teachable, and appreciative.  The second type are the ones I stick around for... but how do I handle the first type?  I've also had a few HR conflicts at work, and it's really led to significant burnout.  Lately, the veterinary trade journals have been flooded with articles on compassion fatigue, burnout, and the general poor mental state of veterinarians.  It seems as if every month, I hear of one of my colleagues committing suicide.   Did you know that the rate of suicide among veterinarians is very high compared to the general population?  These are from an article in Veterinarian's Money Digest (which they got from a CDC study on veterinarian health):
  • 6.8 percent of male and 10.9 percent of female veterinarians have serious psychological distress, compared with 3.5 percent and 4.4 percent of male and female adults, respectively, in the general population.
  • 14 percent of male and 19 percent of female veterinarians have suicidal thoughts, three times that of the general U.S. population.
  • 24.5 percent of male and 36.7 percent of female veterinarians have experienced depressive episodes since veterinary school graduation, about 1.5 times the prevalence among U.S. adults throughout their lifetime.
  • 1.1 percent of male and 1.4 percent of female veterinarians have attempted suicide since veterinary school.
 I have never personally considered suicide, but I have experienced mental anguish so intense because of my job that for a moment...I understood why veterinarians commit suicide.   So what can I do to make it better?  What can I do to improve our profession?   I spent a lot of time thinking about this.   What is they say on the airplane?  Put on your own mask before assisting your neighbor.   So, I signed up for therapy.    But...the therapist had a 4 month wait list.... so I started studying the Proverbs and reading numerous books.  I'll try to blog a little more this year.  I have rare instances of my kids not needing constant attention...rare instances indeed.  Maybe my blog will help someone...maybe not, but at least it will be therapeutic for me.

03 May 2016

Mom enough?

A blog post with only my phone...no access to a computer to type my blog posts.