We've been without our regular nurse, who we adore, for almost 3 weeks. I've been putting up with having five different nurses come in to our home to replace her shifts, trying my hardest to make the best of this knowing that it was just temporary. There was one nurse in particular that I never liked from the beginning. She gave me a weird vibe and I should have gone with my instincts. Turns out she was given the majority of the replacement shifts to cover. Lucky us.
Today, I had finally had it.
This nurse doesn't have children of her own and didn't have the patience or compassion required to care for a Doodle Bug. A special needs Doodle Bug. She was hoping for an easy child, who would sit in the bed and sleep. Our Doodle has so much energy that he bounces off the walls and finds it hard to sit still. Add his horrible medication side effects and you have one Jacked Up Little Dude on Depakote running around in a helmet.
You could tell she didn't want to be here. She wasn't very nice to the Doodle and pretty much just verbally badgered him all day. If he hurt himself or cried, she made no attempt to soothe him. I didn't like her tone or the way she would talk to him. She was so snotty with him and always kind of yelling at him.
"Stop it. Don't do that. No. No. No. I said No. Don't touch it. Get out of there. Sit down. Alright that's it. Well, you shouldn't have taken off your shoes. No. I said No."And so it would go. And she treated him like this when I was home and she knew I could hear her. I started getting uneasy and wondering how she was with him when I was gone...I wish I had a nanny cam.
And please don't mistake my protectiveness as if I'm in denial that my child is not a brat. Doodle is a very challenging child; most of the time. He has a lot of issues and I know that. I also know that it takes a special kind of person to be able to care for him and want to help him.
So during one of her rants with the Doodle, I walked into the room where they were, picked him up and gave him a big hug and kiss. He couldn't have been happier to see me. I think he thought I was saving him from the mean lady.
I asked her point blank if she knew he was Autistic? She stuttered a bit, a little taken back by my direct question. So I just stared at her and waited for her answer. She said, "Yes, I know." So then I asked her if she has ever taken care of an autistic child? And she said, "No, but my friend has one of them". Then she buried her foot further into her mouth when she told me her friend has some help for it...
Really nice. "One of them and it". So that sealed the deal. It was all I could do not to kick her out of my house right there.
I went off a little bit on one of my tirades and I told her that he isn't understanding half of what she is saying to him and just because her voice gets meaner, that doesn't mean anything to him. I told her that trying to teach him a lesson by not letting him go outside because he took his shoes off was futile. That she couldn't sit and try to have a battle of wits with him and verbally beat him down to a point where he would understand her thinking. I told her that it seems like he spends a good deal of the time with her upset and crying and that it was hard for me to listen to her treat him that way and if she lets him get too upset she was going to throw him into a seizure.
That did it for me.
And although we only had her scheduled for one more day, I called the Agency and told them not to send her to our house ever again, that I'd rather have NO HELP than to have her help. I explained to them how I was feeling and at first I felt guilty but then I realized, wait a minute, I am his voice and advocate. If I don't stand up for him, my child, who will? It's not like this nurse was here out of the kindness of her heart, she was working and getting paid to be here and take care of the Doodle.