At my final visit to Danville, I was with the female unit downstairs. Me and two other students played cards with a consumer. We played a game called spades. Me and the other students have never played before so the consumer took it upon herself to teach us how to play. For this game there were two teams, so me and the consumer were on one team and the other two students were teammates. After the first round we all got the hang of it and we continued to play for the whole hour.
The consumer was in an electric scooter. At one point she said she was in a very uncomfortable position and she had to call over one of the supervisors to help lift her up. She had little movement with her hands and struggled to hold her cards at times. She needed assistance with picking up her cards and putting them down. She seemed frustrated when she couldn’t do it herself. (This consumer was mentally with it), which made me infer that she was there maybe due to depression because of her physical disability from a serious accident or some sort. One of the students I was with had met her before and remembered that she practiced Chinese so she asked her if she was still practicing her Chinese. The consumer said she hasn’t been really doing much because her medication has been making her very tired and not want to do anything. She seemed pretty upset when she said this. This made me wonder what medication she was on that would make her feel that way. Another female consumer came over to talk to the consumer we were with and they were talking about nursing homes. The consumer we were with was talking about how she wanted to go to this one particular nursing home because it was closer to her family. The consumer also told us about how she was going to have a visitor the next day and she really wanted to leave and get wings at her favorite restaurant. She was upset though because she didn’t get permission to leave yet. When we were leaving she thanked us for coming and told us how much she enjoyed our company.
I have learned a lot from my visits to Danville. Interacting with consumers who have the mental illnesses that we have talked about in class firsthand has contributed to my better understanding of such illnesses. It was definitely upsetting leaving Danville yesterday for the last time as I have developed connections with some of these consumers.