Filed under: death, family conflict, family life, hospital, husbands, mom, surgery, worries | Tags: bypass surgery, CABG, children, parents
It’s been awhile since I’ve posted…I’ve been very remiss about getting my blog updated. I’ve had a lot of stress these days, getting to see the hospital from the other side.
My younger son has developed some new medical problems. Stressful simply on the face of it, of course. It’s also stressful because The Husband and I are not at all in agreement about how to address it. I would like nothing more than to take him up to a specialist in the major metropolitan area north of us. My husband is advocating for a watch and wait and see approach. I’m giving it another few days.
My mother is also facing a challenge. She has risk factors for heart disease, primarily genetic ones. Her cardiologist really felt that they would be relatively minor at this stage. She had a slightly abnormal stress test. She needed a surgery and so they opted to wait to do an angiogram. She had very few symptoms, some minor shortness of breath and a “heaviness.” The cardiologist was very confident that she would possibly need a stent, at the most.
Unfortunately, he was wrong. She has severe, multi-vessel disease in her heart. She will be having a 5 vessel, possibly a 6 vessel, bypass on Monday. The good news is that she has somehow managed never to have a heart attack, so there is no damage to her heart muscle. She also has good kidneys and no ongoing wound issues from her diabetes. But, obviously this is a surgery that is not without some serious risk.
I’m obviously more aware of the serious risks since I work a lot in our ICU and I’m often called in when there are serious complications for patients undergoing open heart. The only issue I’ve had is having to explain to a sibling that, while she’s likely to do quite well after the surgery, there is a possibility she could die as a result of the surgery. It’s not likely but still a very real possibility.
So, I am attempting to relax this weekend. I’m going to my 20 year class reunion (God! Am I that old?) and also spending Sunday with my mother. Monday will be here sooner than I would like.
Filed under: Child Protective Services, MSW, social work, social work ethics | Tags: children, CPS, judgement call
I’m always kind of surprised when it comes time to call Child Protective Services. When I imagined it while I was going to school, both undergrad and in my MSW program, I always assumed that it would be in a situation that was unambiguous and where I would feel firmly on high moral ground. Even now I am surprised at how few times this is actually the case.
Currently I’m dealing with a case where older children are involved. Some of my co-workers have taken the stance that since the children are older CPS doesn’t need to be involved…essentially that they can take care of themselves. It’s not that they don’t believe that harm on some level is occurring for these children, it’s a belief that CPS maybe has bigger fish to fry.
And the situation with the parent isn’t exactly cut and dry. There is another parent in the home who appears to be of sound mind. But with what’s going on with the patient in the hospital, I’m not sure that the “healthy” parent can make up for all the chaos the patient must create in the home.
I haven’t made the call to CPS yet. I will most likely do it tomorrow. Part of my hesitation is maybe the fact that I’m questioning my own motives for wanting to make a report in this case. I’m wondering if I’m wanting to use a CPS report as a sort of intervention for the patient. Rationally, I know this would be silly. The likelihood that CPS would take action is probably small. And, talking to this patient, I doubt that even CPS coming into the home would make any difference in the course of their disease. So, it boils down to making the call just to cover myself, just in case. But, I just wish it felt clearer to me that this was the “right thing” in this case.