Friday, April 16, 2010

Bed Frame in Use

The bed frame, I must say, is completely splendid. I did a magnificent job. The color is frighteningly gorgeous and happy. I sleep like the rock of ages upon my creation. Except last night, when I fell asleep on the CC (craigslist couch). I fell asleep on the CC at 6:30 p.m. I woke up vibrating in cold, with Miss Daisy on my face, at 2:30 a.m. and could not get back to sleep.

Sam widely sprawled, atop the mattresses atop the bed frame.

The Veterans Center's Coveted Jobs

In other news, Lebanon got the hotly sought after veterans center for Oregon. I figured they would get it, being centrally located, almost exact middle of the state, not far off I5.

I was sad for my brother because Lebanon got it. Because if the southern Oregon location had got it, it might have been some work for his company. I talked to him about it a few weeks ago and he said they had no chance, partly because the area where he lives is so poor that they could not come up with funds the community must contribute and that considered city is not centrally located at all. Here, it will mean higher property taxes to pay for it.

The veterans need these hospitals. The jobs that it will create will be government jobs. Federal jobs I guess. Either way, any government job these days pays more in benefits, like health care, vacation time, and retirement than most private sector jobs. I bet lots of people will be trying to get them, and even trying to switch, say from being an aid at a private nursing home or hospital, to there, because the pay and benefits should be far better for the same work.

I worked as a nurse's aid when I was younger, when I was in college. It is very very hard work, hard on the back especially, since often you are lifting dead weight--human bodies, without any mechanical aids to do it. It's really hard to lift limp human bodies. You might not think that until you try doing it.

Nurses' aid work is also very very stinky and sad. Mainly, on the night shifts I worked, you were cleaning up human poop and urine, often diarrhea, and often there were not enough aides on and not even enough supplies. Nursing homes then, maybe still, were terrible that way, for low staff levels and no supplies. You didn't even get to wear gloves for cleaning up human waste all night. I bet that has changed by now.

It was sad work because of the old people, many just stared at the walls or jabbered quietly in deep dementia. Most got no visitors, and laid in bed all day, and were turned, from one side to the other, every few hours. Often they would moan all day.

Many of the aides were devious and would steal from anyone they could, mostly from patients, but also from visitors or they would try to steal drugs meant for patients. This still goes on.

An acquaintance with a relative in a nursing home, bought a tv for another patient there, who did not have one. That patient died and my acquaintance went to retrieve the TV and the family, who had never visited their relative, had taken the tv. She was told if a patient has no relatives or friends watching out for them, they get stolen from.

One thing I decided after working in those places is that I never ever want to end up in a nursing home. I would sure hope someone would just lay me out in the mountain snow before putting me in a nursing home, or shove me off a cliff, if I couldn't jump, or put a bullet to my brain. These are all far better more dignified ends. I do not want to waste away, my last days, in one of those places. Hunter Thompson had the right idea.

I haven't heard from my brother since that conversation I had with my younger one about the VA center. I try not to worry about his company. He's had to lay off most of his employees. He remains hopeful. I worry, because if he goes bankrupt or something, I could lose this house to live in, that I rent from him, and be living in my car somewhere, if my car keeps running that is. It's got a lot of miles on it, so I think about that, too, and want to keep it running in case I have to live in it at some point.

I wish the economy would pick up so my brother could find jobs to bid on. Then I wouldn't think about having to live in my car one day again. It stays on my mind, as it is, now. I could live in that rest area where I sleep, when I take cats in, up at the Portland clinic. It's not too bad there and there are restrooms to use. Lots of people live there off and on.

I just keep an eye out, on places I might be able to camp out, if that bad thing happens. And I keep searching for things that are going to be built in the future, so I can let my brother know, if he doesn't already, which he usually does, in case its something he can bid to build. He's a good builder. I worry most about my cats if something like that should happen.

My older brother told me last time he e-mailed, and the e-mails are always just brief infrequent responses, so it's hard to really tell anything, that his boss might be trying to sell his company to save it, then he doesn't know what would happen with his job. Lots of angst out there.

Both my brothers have kids who will graduate from school this year. My older brothers' daughter will graduate from high school and my younger brothers' son will graduate from college in Eugene. Unfortunately, I never really got to know my two nieces and one nephew, being in the mental health system while they were growing up. I only got to meet them a handful of times.

I love my brothers and I don't want them to lose their jobs. I don't hear from them routinely, so my worries may be nothing. I don't see them often either. I try to conjure up what they look like in my mind, but if it has been a year or more, I can't.


  1. I used to be a Nurse's Aide many years ago at Nehalem Valley Care Center. Yeah, it's pretty icky. I DID get some satisfaction from being a ray of kindness in the patients' otherwise grim lives, however. That's pretty much the only reward that job has.

    Like you, I worry about economic things. My cat rescue is dependent on my sister - it's her place. If something happens I can personally deal with being homeless (been there, done that) but the cats... I don't know what would happen to them. I couldn't fit them all in a vehicle. *sigh*

    Government spending is pretty much the only thing keeping the economy afloat right now - the very thing tea partiers are bitching about. If we lose that ....well, I don't want to think about it.

  2. I've been looking for a job again, but without any job skills doesn't look good. I'd be without med insurance, but then most people are these days.

    What does your sister do, Chriss? Is the mortgage paid off on the place where you two live?

  3. My sister is a social worker for the state. Her hours have been cut back and they have cut back on staff, too. She still has a job so far. She also has health problems and that is an issue too.

    Unfortunately it will be another 5 years before the mortgage is paid, I think.

    Oh and for what it's worth, I still think healthcare is better than a job. You can always do things like sell flowers by the side of the road that don't generate reported income. I know, I'm over opinionated. :)

  4. Well, I have a garden in already. I don't have much space for it, unfortunately. Buying dirt is really expensive, for raised beds. You wouldn't think, but I found out, so could only do one this year. I can only grow in the front. The back does not get enough sun to grow anything. I have one of those little tiny lawn pieces out front, but if I could turn the whole area into raised beds, it would be plenty to raise enough food for me, to have fresh and to can the rest. Maybe by next year, I'll come across affordable dirt and compost. I'm trying to find an extreme gardner who would let me work for fresh food.

  5. You don't have either one, do you Chriss? You don't have a job or health care?

  6. I've planted stuff, including fruit trees, but my sister's goats keep getting out and destroying everything. I only have a couple of trees left.

    That is what keeps me from doing more stuff.

    And like I said, if something negative happens with my sister then I won't have space of any kind - and that's the main worry. Not for me, but for the cats.

  7. Oh... I don't have healthcare, for sure, although I'm on the OHP lottery list.

    I get some money from artwork, t-shirt design and stuff. It isn't a real job but there are some perks to that, too.

  8. Looks like the cats are enjoying your new bed!

  9. Yes, the bed frame is loved by the cats already. And guess who I got a message from on my machine yesterday? Ikea! They claim they are anxious to make it right, over that useless bed frame I bought from them. Seems they got a letter from the department of justice. I got back late, so didn't call yesterday. Am trying to decide what I should ask of them, since the bed frame boards are to be put to alternate use, and I disposed of the end pieces.