As some of you know, a bitch is co-guardian of my older autistic brother. He’s in residential care and we’re very lucky that his program is with the same center he received treatment and education from as a youth. Critical to a person’s residential treatment is a series of yearly assessments and one big Person Centered Plan. As guardians, C-Money and this bitch get to participate in all of that…and that participation is beyond illuminating of all the various bits that make up a life.
This past Tuesday we participated in my brother’s Needs Assessment. This is a new thing in Missouri where a representative from the state department of mental health comes to a client’s primary residence and goes through a detailed assessment of all the things that client needs.
Of course there is not guarantee that Missouri will fund all of my brother’s needs…we actually anticipate a serious reduction in funding, which is some of the drama that’s been weighing on a bitch’s soul. But there is power in documenting how things should be even as we prepare for how things will be.
During the Needs Assessment, the State Coordinator of Assessing Needed Things asked about my brother’s emotional and physical needs…everything from time with family and friends to nutrition to support and assistance required. My brother was able to participate as much as he wanted…which wasn’t much, since he was busy lobbying for French fries and soda pop (his favorites), but I really liked the fact that he had the option to be involved.
I haven’t been able to stop thinking about the needs assessing experience. I have long marveled at my brother’s Person Centered Plan…a single document that represents his life…and wondered if I could do one for myself. Oh, I have lots of plans…but I never seem to combine them all into one central location. After witnessing the planning process with my brother I know that a lot of unrealistic stuff gets revealed when plans are combined,
Now I’m pondering the possibility of assessing my needs.
Think about it for a moment…an assessment of your emotional, physical and financial needs and whether they are being met.
Does my work fulfill me emotionally…am I physically able to do it…does it provide me with the funds I need to survive?
How often do I need to be with family and friends…how often am I? How often do I need down time…how often do I take it? What are my nutritional needs…are they being met (wince and remind self that sometimes foods are to be eaten some of the time, not daily)?
Who couldn’t use that kind of break down of all things you?
Too often I find myself moving from situation to situation…from action to action…from struggle to struggle. I find myself getting burned out and then avoiding any analysis of how that shit happened…because I want I avoid any discussion of what I need for fear that it won’t jive with what I want.
But it is that avoidance that gets in the way of getting to what I want. I’m tired, because I haven’t been taking care of myself. I’m stressed out, because I say yes when I should say no.
All of that sure as shit doesn’t add up to a body that will be able to continue the struggle or do a good job at it.
What it does add up to is a person who is anything but centered getting fed up, burned out and too frazzled to function.
And a bitch doesn’t require a three hour meeting to know that that’s not what I want or need.