27 Oct 2014

Is it preventative or preventive healthcare?

I had to look it up. The Affordable Care Act says "preventive" and I have always said "preventative".

http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/preventive-versus-preventative

According to Grammar Girl, preventive is preferred by grammar snobs, but both are now considered acceptable.

Now you know, just like me. YAY.

PS: I can NEVER spell Jeapordy right. Ever. I wanted to hum the Jeapordy theme song after the question, but I can’t do it. Jeopardy. There we go. Spelling check can luckily spell it.

Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: none

25 Oct 2014

Pediatric OT group on FB – wonderful resource for occupational therapists

If you are in pediatric OT, or interested, consider joining this Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/search/keyword/?q=pediatric%20occupational%20therapists

The Facebook group name is "Pediatric Occupational Therapists", it’s got over 11,000 people in it, and surprisingly it’s closed? Meaning you have to ask to join and see the posts, if I understand correctly.

The posts are frequent and typically high quality in the responses/comments (of course it depends on the question as to how many responses you get).

I learn a lot from that group, although the hardest part is the blows to my self-esteem as I see how incredibly knowledgeable most of the posters are!! One in particular, Linda Nelson, is an incredible stand-out with her evidence-based resources. She posts articles constantly. She overwhelms me with her awesomeness. Another wonderful poster is Beverly Moskowitz, who runs realotsolutions.com, and is the inventor of the Size Matters program. She has so much experience and writes very thoughtful posts. Seriously I am overwhelmed with how wonderful the posters are. And underwhelmed with my grammatical ability.

But I figure, perhaps incorrectly, that I would rather post with some unedited writings than only post when I have time to edit them perfectly. Because I would never post if so, this is just a side hobby!

Anyway, I highly recommend this group for ped OTs or those interested.

Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: 2

25 Oct 2014

Halloween Spider

Test to see if this posts via e-mail.

Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: none

20 Oct 2014

I survived two major OT stressors in a row! Yay

1. I survived four long days in Utah (left day before/day after so really 6 days)! I met all the people in my post-professional doctoral OT program (OTD) and everyone was incredibly nice. Like sickeningly nice. Like amazingly nice. 🙂 Only a few of us (38 people I think?) had less than five years of experience. Many had decades of experience. Some were directors, or long-term managers, or owners of clinics…a very impressive crowd. We all fly in once a semester for a multiple day on-site learning experience. This was the first one. 🙂

The entire visit was phenomenal. Utah was beautiful, and the employees of Rocky Mountain University of Health Professors (RMUoHP) were all stellar. I feel like I’m being paid to write this because it sounds so over the top. But it’s true. Every single person we encountered was friendly and knowledgeable and went above and beyond. Not a whiff of incompetence was found. Of course, meeting the cohort and our professors was incredible. I really enjoyed getting to see everyone’s personalities up close and personal!

Our two program directors seem as different and as similar as can be. They seem like they are an old mostly happily married couple that make their shared life work, even though I get the feeling their personality traits may vary widely. Like that TV couple where one is messy and one is clean? I am thinking Felix and Oscar or something, but that sounds like two men. I’m getting confused.

We also met our two statistic instructor, both having to do with evidence-based practice/analysis/design. Dr. P is absolutely hysterically funny and I think one day she and I will be BFF. Even if it’s one-sided and I just follow her around like a stalker puppy, wide-eyed and pawing at her ankles. I guess I would be a teacup sized puppy. She is French-Canadian and talked about having a cat in her throat. Turns out she meant frog. I love her. She is also good about making statistics feel more or less approachable/doable.

The other instructor, Dr. V, is not as into humor, although she does seem to appreciate it. In other words, she doesn’t hate me. Since I don’t know how to be serious to save my life, she clearly tolerates humor. She is very knowledgeable and she does not mince words. (I feel like mincing words is technically a way to be concise, because it’s like you chop them up. So why is NOT mincing words meant to be conciseness? Am I confused yet again?) I appreciate her style and intent/approach to learning, and she was at times amusing. She taught us a lot about critical appraisal and opened our eyes to how often and how easily abstracts/results/discussions are manipulated. Startling.

I do have to say that I am pretty sure this instructor is not someone you want to mess with. As in, if she ever got mad at me, I would probably instantly jump off a cliff because I will otherwise die a slow and painful death. I know this because there is apparently a researcher she despises, and based on the examples and explanations she provided over the course of our day with her, it was clear this researcher will live in torment until the day he dies. 🙂 I’m kidding, of course. I think. I hope.

Trying to teach statistics to post-professional students, some of whom (grammar?) have not been in school in like 20 years, is like trying to teach ducks how to sit in a row on a tightrope. There are a lot of falls and a lot of heads smashing into things. Mostly its the instructors smashing their heads into walls though, not so much the ducks. Us ducks just fall, look stunned and confused, then shake our heads and waffle our feathers. I hear teachers have a high rate of alcoholism, and I wonder how many of them taught statistics to students of social sciences. There is a reason vodka is called "teacher water"!!

No seriously. I loved loved loved my cohort and instructors in real life. I loved loved loved the people at Rocky Mountain, and the views of Utah from campus were stunning.
Oh, and the other two highlights? One was meeting Jan who does the distance learning technology components, and she is an incredible and fun woman devoted to helping us "learn how to learn" in a distance education model.

The other was meeting JOY, the medical librarian. She is aptly named. She is quite possibly the funniest person in the entire world. She is the other person who has to be my post-graduation BFF, again it’s fine if it’s one-sided. I will follow her around like a teacup puppy as well. But I guess I will have to clone my little puppy self first since I can’t follow around two people at once. I have to also be a puppy with thumb opposition, since I have to write down everything they say. So I think this stalker-teacup-clone-puppy-with-opposable-thumbs plan of mine is becoming increasingly unlikely.

Joy is from the South, and she has the honeyed accent to prove it. She’s smart as a flagellated whip and every cell of her body is filled with sass. She knows how to correctly assert the librarial power of her glasses/bun combo. But she’s an adorable blondie so the whole "mousey" part of the stereotype doesn’t apply.

"Remember the bun," she would assert, pointing at it while fixing us with a steely glare. Our eyes would widen in fear at the thought of ever doing something wrong, like forgetting the PMID number in our article requests. She was a crack-up, and everything is always exaggerated when a slow drawl is involved.

Overall I would say that I love my RMUoHP program for the post-professional OTD. I wasn’t sure what to think as I hadn’t met anyone who had done their program. I am relatively sure it is not as rigorous as a program run by some heavy hitter in the AOTA world, like Karen Jacobs (Boston I think?).

There are some pretty high-profile OT celebrities and I bet their programs are insanely challenging. I don’t know for sure though since I don’t know how to compare it. And different programs have slightly different lengths depending on how they structure it, ie how many credits a semester. Our program is plenty challenging in lots of ways, although academics are a strength for me, so doesn’t feel that horrible. The time it takes is the biggest issue.

I do know that if I were working full-time with a family, that this program would throw me over the edge. A LOT of the people in my cohort are in that boat, and I am so impressed they are surviving.

I have the energy capacity of a 90 year old, so I get tired just thinking about their lives right now. Anybody who can do a post-professional OTD while working full-time is a superhero in my eyes. So apparently there are a lot of superheroes out there.

I have pictures from the trip, but my blog is being weird. We had to increase some server stuff (don’t ask me the technical details, I just do the social parts!!) and now the pictures bounce. I have posted several things lately that I then had to go back and turn into drafts, because the pictures didn’t show up. 🙁 Grrr. It’s in progress.

The other major stressor I survived, was that less than a week later, I presented at state conference to over 200 OT Students. It’s Tonya’s fault (therapyfunzone.net) as I was her co-presenter. She is amazing too.

It’s funny that I can do what many others can’t, stress-wise, like present in front of hundreds, and work on a doctorate. Neither of those are THAT stressful to me. Yet what normal people do every day, like get up and go to work all day, and do basic and instrumental activities of daily life? Kills me. I freak out. I get overwhelmed. I panic. A lot of it at this point seems to be sleep-related, so we’re working on figuring that out.

Speaking of which, it’s nearly 2am. I’ll have to talk more about the presentation soon.

In conclusion. I survived two big events. They were major tests of my current stress tolerance, and I passed. 🙂 But I have to work on better tolerating the daily stressors. In more conclusion, I love my OTD program. Ask me again tomorrow though when I finish a few assignments. AHAHAHHA

The End.

Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: 3

15 Oct 2014

APA Formatting in Word

APA Format Hanging Indent for References

This is a 45 second screencast I made that just quickly shows how to do a proper hanging indent (for APA style references in Word document) in Microsoft Word 2011 for Macs.

Don’t forget you can also search the Help toolbar in Word, Google (which brings up the tutorials that Microsoft Word has on its website), and Youtube, for help.

I’m having to re-learn all these APA pieces for the post-professional doctorate of occupational therapy program (OTD), because I last did these things five years ago! Many of the post-professionals in my cohort are a little older and are learning the APA formatting in Word for the first time, so I’m trying to help out where I can with mini screencasts like the one linked above. I’m not great at it myself, but I can usually figure it out with some searches on Google.

Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: 2

7 Oct 2014

The in-person component of the OTD program!

There are many post-professional occupational therapy doctorate programs (versus entry level), and I think the vast majority of them are online. However, some have an in-person component at least once a semester. I chose one that did, because I hear that it is really helpful to meet your cohort and professors. It helps you learn who everyone is, and better appreciate their input and collaboration.

I have now spent five weeks in my OTD program and have encountered all the names of different people, but I cannot keep them straight to save my life. I know that there are quite a few men in the program (semi unusual in typical OT world), and that I don’t have much experience in comparison to most of my cohort. Many of them have been in practice 20+ years and are managers/directors. A surprising number of them seem to be school-based. Only three names so far have stood out to me. Let’s just call them Anna, Banna, and Danna.

Anna is always the first to post on every forum and I know nothing about her, but I know if I see a single posting on a newly opened forum for that week’s work, that it’s her! I can’t figure out how she does it!

Banna is a therapist in the “small world” category who knows one of my former fieldwork supervisors and lives in Tennessee where I used to live. She has ten trillion years of experience and very quickly emerged as an outstanding engager/encourager.

Danna is a sweet and enthusiastic younger therapist (I think), who has tried doing some affirmation writing with her students after I brought it up, and I can tell by our interactions that we have some similarities in our mindset.

There are tons of other great people, I just haven’t had their names pop out at me. Because there is no scaffolding to any of these people (in my head that is), I haven’t been able to link their information to a name, and even though I’ve seen their name and info in tons of forums, I just keep not attaching it as data about the person. They should require us to write a quick biography, with a clear picture, that we all get a copy of in one accumulated file! Because we all wrote one in like four different forum spots, but it got confusing quickly.

So, now it’s time to go meet everyone! (Hey, robbers: I don’t live alone, sorry.) The last few days have been super stressful trying to catch up, and I’ve been overwhelmed, but I know everyone is. And I am proud of myself for not “shutting down”, and doing my best to get on top of things. I worked hard to preview and plan for all my typical anxiety triggers, and got a lot of resources (internal and external) to help me handle the energy conservation components.

I realized, for example, that on Wednesday night, there is a big dinner reservation at a local restaurant and I had said I would go. But when I thought about it, I realized that with my fatigue issues and how much anxiety I expend on such a dinner (getting there, interacting with everyone socially in a large environment, the challenge of dividing a large bill correctly, and the drastically decreased amount of time to rest), that it will overdraft that day’s energy budget, and I will be at a deficit for the next day. So I won’t go after all.

I did bring my hula hoop, all coiled up for travel, but it’s a little big for my bag so cross your fingers that it’s not irretrievably warped when I get there. Very good for stress relief/fun. 🙂 I wanted to bring a giant one, but even coiled it was way too big for my suitcase.

This is kind of like a business trip, and I realized today that I’ve never been on one! They want us to dress business casual and I had to go back and dig through my closet to find some. I was trying on clothes this morning and it was very Goldilocks. “These pants are too small…these pants are too big…these pants are juuusttttt….more or less….right.”

The woman next to me in the airport just commented on her missing daughter and said, “it must be a long cigarette she’s smoking.” AHAHAHAHAAH yikes.

My plane is running late – was supposed to join a few others on a shuttle, but it’s not looking good. Oh well, hopefully it will work out! I already took the less drowsy Dramamine – the 45 minute shuttle ride will otherwise be an issue. I love Sharpies, because I always get confused as to what Dramamine is drowsy versus not drowsy when it’s not in its original box and is just in the silver poppies because its just the ingredient. So I Sharpied it on the silver poppy and that made my life easier today. ::beams:: Also fun to sharpie gift card balances on the gift card.

Okay I don’t have ADD but I am bouncing around. Because I can. And wow, really I should be studying right now. So I will stop writing this insanely long message. All I can say is, I know I will be glad to meet everyone, and I also know it will be a major test of my functional capacity these days!

Update: Made it to Utah and am in my hotel room. Unfortunately there were some delays/misses but alas, alas is well. Time to look at stats ::whimpers:: 🙂

Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: 3

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