Sunday, May 25, 2014

My apologies, dear readers

I was shocked this morning to see that I haven't posted on here in over a month.

Shocked, but not surprised.

Yesterday was one of the first days in a very long time that I had a minute to myself.  And, by that, I literally mean a minute to myself. Time not spent working or arranging care help or supervising help or figuring out if what I delegated was done and, if not, how to re-delegate it or, in some instances, take care of it myself.

This morning I woke up early , although I didn't want to or need to, so that the one available aide out of my half a dozen hires could work.  She has a full time job already, so she can only help around that other job.  So there I was, up at 6:30 a.m. on a weekend, staring at my coffee, wondering how I could have six people on the payroll and find myself with this as my only choice for help today.  I know, however, I'm not alone with this because I talk to other quads in the same boat with the same issues with aides.

Here's how this caregiving thing goes - you hire Person A based on your needs when you hire, such as available shifts that X, Y and Z can't fill.    There is a lot of turnover.  There are also a lot of empty promises - those made by people eager to be hired who  say they are more available than they are, more willing to adapt to my schedule so I, too, can have a social life. Then if person X leaves (or gets fired or doesn't work out or absents himself/herself from certain shifts), another hire gets made based on the new configuration of help. I've been bombarded with change after change after change lately.

The result of this, due to so many hires, is that I'm left with configurations that make no sense.  And this is exacerbated by people changing their minds about the shifts they want to work, especially when summer hits and everyone wants the weekend off and really nice weather days in the 70's; or when something better to do comes up such as a party, concert, renewing their driver's license. However, people are willing to stop by for a ten minute period or so, with others waiting in the car, leaving me trying to prioritize my needs - do I want to eat or have clean dishes?  Not to mention that cancellations are made up to and including the day of the shift and sometimes the minute after someone is scheduled to arrive and I;m supposed to put on a cape and find a replacement (however , see above for the chances of that happening)

Then there is the Et tu Brute syndrome going on.  Any mention of the above to friends results in endless well meaning albeit useless suggestions and advice on how to "fix it", which makes me want to toss things at people with my quad reacher. At least feed me a sandwich  first before telling me I'm responsible for other's bad work ethic when I haven't even had a chance to fix it yet.  Trust me, I know how to fix this and will.

So really it's no surprise I haven't had time to blog.  I can usually fudge by putting up a YouTube video as I contemplate what the heck I'm going to do about X or Y or Z not showing up. But I didn't even pull that off this time.

So I apologize to you, dear readers, if any are left. I promise to do better.  For you and for me.

UPDATE:  And here's the simple quick fix: first, negotiate a limited number of days with early morning slots available for all employees, with first come, first served;  second,  if remaining employees can't fill other slots, make additional hires or offer more hours to existing employees.


Melanie Metcalf said...

Sounds so frustrating, Ruth!

But it's good to see you posting again.

Ruth said...

Thanks, Melanie, glad to be posting again. Hope you're having a nice weekend holiday.