Occupational Therapy, Part 1

Occupational Therapy, Part 1

This is just my side of the story and no medical advice!

When I was discharged from the mental hospital this fall, OT was recommended to help me structure my day.

I have had OT before. At this time, I had problems concentrating at work. Every telephone ringing or collegue talking would disrupt my train of thought and I would have to start all over again. That made my work as an accountant extremly difficult.

In OT, I would be shown short film clips and had to answer questions after that, like, “How many cars were driving down the street?” Or we would play memory games, the  kind where cards lie on the table face down and you have to find the matching pairs. Once we created a mandala.

The therapist came to the conclusion everything was alright with my ability to concentrate. I disagreed with this assessment. During therapy I told her more than once that the quiet enviroment of the therapy sessions could in no way be compared to my hectic workplace. I didn’t develop any coping mechanisms, I was glad when it was over, I didn’t ask for a follow-up prescription and was angry about the co-payment.

Fast forward to the present. Same  therapist’s office, new therapist (living in the countryside means limited options. Also the therapist’s office must be accessible by public transportation). And a different starting point – coping with everyday life, not work.

This time we considered many therapy options during the preliminary meeting. The angel in the picture was suggested by my therapist. I had fun making it, and it is nice to have some tangible proof of my work. I like to cook and bake in my OT sessions, too, because this is so difficult for me to do on my own at home. My husband looks forward to me bringing home those goodies, and I am glad to see him happy. It is an upward spiral and I feel more motivated. This time, I will ask for a follow-up prescription, and I don’t mind the co-payment at all.

I just can guess why the first try turned out to be such an epic failure. Maybe my expectations were set too high, or maybe we did the wrong exercises.

My opinion is, OT can be a valuable tool because it offers many options. But it is important that the patient is very precise about the therapeutic goal at the beginning, and that adjustments are made if necessary.