Survey for 2018

Hello everyone!

Last year, Chantel and I put together a survey where you all could give us feedback on the blog. We did it on Survey Monkey last year and had a lot about book recs for our book club.

This time, things are a bit different.

It’s only six questions, no book recommendations (unless you want to give them in a comment!), and most are optional. It’s super easy and you can take it right here on this post.

If you could please take a second and respond to it, that’d be great! I know that I want to take suggestions from you all and help tailor the blog. Everything’s anonymous, so don’t worry about me knowing what you said!

Thank you all! ❤

One semester down, three to go!

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I did it! I finished my first semester of grad school and I, honestly, can’t believe it. This year has gone by in such a flash. I was prepared for the increase in work, yet I was absolutely shocked at the same time. It was more that they were asking me to do more, not that it was harder.

But, I finished. I have a month long break that I’m taking full advantage of. Like the good social worker I aspire to be, I set boundaries with my practicum. I flat out told them that I’ll work on stuff for indirect hours, but I’m not coming in and I’m not going to see clients.

However, I’ll be picking up a lot of hours at work. It’s our busiest time of the year. I fully expect my feet to be aching but my paycheck to be large. (Which is good.)

Next semester, I have super boring sounding classes. I’ll be using any money I get this year for Christmas to pay for those textbooks, so I already know that I won’t be getting a lot for the holidays this year. Which is fine. My parents bought out the textbooks I rented for this semester, so I’m eternally grateful for that since they’ll be helpful my whole career. But, at the same time, it kinda sucks that I won’t have as many “fun” presents. The small sacrifices will be worth it in the end!

Still, I’m so damn happy that I’m done for the time being. I need the break.

Talk to me!
Who else is ready for a bit of a break?
Anyone have fun holiday plans?

Transgender Day of Remembrance

Today is November 20th and that means it’s a day that isn’t as talked about as I think it should be.

It’s the Transgender Day of Remembrance.

It’s the day where the transgender community remembers the people who were killed, sometimes brutally, this year.

Each year on this day, the dead are remembered. People get together and read the names out holding candles. I’ve never attended one of these, but I always try to remember those who passed away by lighting my own candle and simply looking at the list of the dead.

The list can be found here.

I encourage all of you to click that link and read. With the proposals that the Trump administration is coming out with regarding the conflation of gender and sex, it puts everyone at risk who don’t conform to the norms presented by society.

Please, read it and, if you can, share it. Being murdered is a fear and worry that I have in the back of my mind every day, even more so with all these proposals. It’s a scary time.

My first patient passed away

CW: death and cancer

Two personal posts in a day. Wow. Y’all are really putting up with me and my non-bookish thoughts, aren’t you?? (I kid, I kid.)

But, I haven’t talked much about my practicum and the things that I’m exposed to. I’m seeing patients on my own, or mostly on my own, these days. I had five in mind, but one of them began actively dying last Wednesday. For those who don’t know, there is a difference between dying and actively dying. As he was on hospice, he is in the dying process, but actively dying means that a person is going to die, perhaps, in a few hours or a week. There are certain signs that crop up so you know it’s happening.

Late last night, he passed away after being actively dying since last Wednesday. He lived through his daughter’s birthday and his own. And died on his birthday.

I have to say, I’m sad about it. I had a bit of a cry because he was a nice man and his family are good people. Yes, he’s in a better place where his cancer is no longer bothering him and he’s able to do the things that he hasn’t been able to.

But, I’m still sad.

It’s hard because I had a relationship with him. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to go to his memorial service or funeral to have a bit more closure, but I’m just processing at the moment.

I’m all good, just so y’all know. It’s just one of those things that happens.

One! Month! Left!

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And also stressed. Also very stressed. Never forget that.

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I have one month left in my first semester. Literally. I feel like I just started. And I did! I started on August 25th of this year and my last day (kind of, because my classes are confusing at times — more on that later) is December 1st.

My practicum ends on December 6th — I’ll be back there bright and early January 7th, though, so my lovely hospice patients will have to deal with me more.

But, holy crap, I have a whole lot more to do.

One class, I have two papers left. Not too long, but, you know.
Another class, I have one “big” paper left. It’s written but I found out I may (or may not) have done it wrong so I really need to rework it.
One last class, I have two papers due. Two-pager (aka easy) and then a behemoth that has to be over ten pages (cover and references not included) with a million citations.

Plus, I’m getting out there and seeing patients on my own!! Crazy. They’re letting me out there to hang out with patients. In some ways, it’s scary. And in others, it’s completely normal and natural because I like them. Yes, I like all of them. Right now, I’m seeing four on my own, plus some other people I still go with for my preceptor.

Basically, while I’m super stressed and tired, I’m also really enjoying it.

Talk to me!
How has your year/month/week/whatever been going?
If you’re in school nearing the end, you got this!

My Safety Plan

This is going to be different than a usual personal post. I don’t quite feel like writing about what’s going on with school, so I want to talk about something my program brought in as something important for us.

That is, a safety plan.

What is a safety plan? It’s something that you create to help yourself in the face of triggers that can threaten your mental health. Basically, these are things you can fall back on to help yourself out when you’re stressed or triggered.

There are usually five of them. Or more if you have more things.

For example, mine are:

1. Read a book of my choice for an hour.

Funny enough, I have to read books for my mental health. If I don’t read books, my mental health deteriorates. I can’t not read, basically. I have to read or I literally fall apart. Believe me, I tried it.

2. Pet my dogs.

My dogs are adorable and so sweet. They love being petted and held. No matter how bad of a day I’m having, they can cheer me up.

3. Talk to my mom or Chantel.

While I’m not the most extroverted person, I love talking to people I trust. On my first day of classes, Chantel and I talked on the phone for nearly three hours until she went outside and I couldn’t hear her talk anymore. My mom and I also have a close relationship, although she doesn’t listen quite as well as Chantel does.

4. Watch a show that I love.

Basically, just watch TV. Doctor Who, Supernatural, American Horror Story, American Crime Story, Ghost Adventures, Expedition Unknown, Destination Truth. Literally, the list could go on and on.

5. Call a crisis number.

This is something that’s supposed to be your last ditch effort if nothing else on your safety plan works. The plan is to keep you safe. And, calling a number like that, can help keep you safe.

So, that’s my safety plan. If you want the document my professor provided, let me know and I’ll find a way to make it available!

Talk to me!
Do you have a safety plan?
Are you thinking about making one for yourself?

Caidyn’s Going Back to School!

Wow y’all, this summer has gone fast. It feels like I just had my graduation ceremony and now here we are.

In case you’re new (and hi! because there are a lot of new followers!) I’m Caidyn. I have a bachelor’s in psychology and I’m going to get a master’s in social work. (Technically called social welfare at my program but whatever.)

It’s a really intensive program, to be honest. Which is why I’m making this post.

I won’t be posting as much. I won’t be liking/commenting as much. My goal is to take an hour each night before I go to bed to catch up on what I missed, but that’s going to be flexible.

My schedule for the next semester basically looks like this at the moment:

  • Monday: field work
  • Tuesday: field work
  • Wednesday: my actual job
  • Thursday: actual job
  • Friday: actual job
  • Saturday: classes every other week
  • Sunday: field work

On top of that, doing my classwork online and writing papers and making sure that I’m visiting clients and on and on and on.

Chantel and I have already decided that we’ll be carving out time to watch something together more often since we love watching shows together. Right now we’re watching Broadchurch, so that’s a whole lot of fun.

Plus, you know, trying to read so I can keep the content coming on here.

I’m going to be stretched thin, I realize that. But, really, I’m going to do my best to keep up with things. This is just me saying I won’t be around as much as I’d like.

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Gushing with Caidyn and Chantel

Gushing with Caidyn and Chantel

The rules are:

  • Pick one thing that you’re really into this week
  • Gush about it

Literally, that’s it. That’s all you have to do for this.

It’s not exactly a tag so there aren’t huge rules. It’s more for Chantel and I to branch out into some new things. This was created as a book blog, but we love music, TV, movies, podcasts, video games, etc. And we want to talk about it more with you.

Caidyn will be in blue.
Chantel will be in purple.

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