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Thursday, June 4, 2009


Most days, the crew in Horticulture Therapy is a collection of weeds and wildflowers. The negative behaviors are weeds and the unique and beautiful issues are wildflowers.

I had a patient say to me a couple of days ago something about a really negative behavior (food hoarding) in the latest new addtion to the crew. He "just wanted me to know in case anything came up missing." I told him that I don't pick the patients that are sent to me and we work with everyone who is able. I screen them to make sure that they can physically do the tasks of the assignment and then I just accept whoever so there are no issues of potential discrimination or selection. Most of the time, I get more psychologically impaired persons as the medical clearance precludes individuals with significant bending, pushing, lifting limitations.

It is hard sometimes for some of the vets to get along with some of the more psychologically impaired vets, but it works out better to let fate choose the crew. Sometimes, the crew is rather lopsided because we have all different levels of functioning floundering around in the crew at one time. The same patient who told me about the new recruit has struggled working with the various levels of functioning of various veterans. He hasn't really accepted that without medication, he has the potential to become dysfunctional as some of the other patients. He was fortunate to have been brought up in a home that taught him a strong work ethic that he has maintained.

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