Often times, people seem interested in what my day to day life looks like. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about how I wanted to write this or if I even wanted to. It’s hard to admit that my life hasn’t been the healthiest.
For those that don’t know, I’m a Juvenile Probation/Parole Specialist II. I work with youth to correct their unhealthy illegal behaviors. Behaviors range from terroristic threats to simple battery to drug charges to truancy and everywhere in between. A lot of it is working with the families to find them desperately needed resources. It is challenging and difficult. It leaves very little emotional and mental space or ability to handle anything else.
I start my day at 8 am at the office which means I wake up around 5:30-6 am. I shower, dress, and get into the car to head over the mountain where my office is. I usually have time to stop at dunkin donuts to get a coffee and breakfast sandwich.
When I sit at my desk, I clock in. Then I check my email first thing. After those two things are done, I sit back and enjoy my coffee and breakfast. I take that ten minutes of my day to slow down and get into the right frame of mind for the day because once I start working, the day doesn’t slow down.
The next things I do vary. If it is a home visit day, I’m usually pulling addresses and calling to remind the parents that I’ll be coming by their house, then I head out of the office with my coworker for the whole day to enter into youth’s homes. You never know what to expect when you go to their houses. Some have almost a barnyard amount of household pets. They smell or are dirty. Some are immaculately clean. Some live in hotels. Some live with grandparents. It all varies.
After we finish with home visits, we head back to the office to do our separate jobs. We go out to home visits together because we are required to do those in pairs. Once back in my office, I enter case notes into the computer on each youth I visited in their home. I am required to keep a detailed log of every time I have contact with the youth or the youth’s family and every time I do something for the youth. Everything must be documented.
On days I have court, I spend the first part of the morning gathering the files and paperwork I need from my office. I get anything I need the judge to sign and any forms I might need from the outcome of court. Then I head to the courthouse. Court takes all day and usually has multiple cases a day. I have to keep straight everything that happens and case note in detail what happened in court per each youth. I collaborate with the ADAs to decide what we will be asking the judge for during the court hearing. I spend the day speaking to the judge, ADAs, youth and their families. I spend the days comforting youth and families, preparing them, and completing forms.
Then there are the days I spend fully in the office. I have office visits with my youth. I am also in charge of completing the intakes for the new youth. I explain the court process, I offer suggestions, I make referrals. I get to know these youth and their families. I pour into their lives often spending my day as a counselor. I supervise community service, I order restitution, I file, and I answer the phone whenever it rings.
Once a week every month to every other month, I’m on call. This means that I take my laptop home and when my work cell phone rings I answer it to take juvenile complaints from law enforcement. I enter in data and information and make the call about whether a youth is released, released with conditions, or detained in a youth detention center.
And that is really just the tip of the iceberg of my job. I have another job as well. It’s called being a mom. Then there’s the job of being a wife. They don’t kid when they say there’s no rest for the weary. Usually, I have to feed my son and myself and husband. Then there’s the cleaning of the house that’s a disaster and slowly being reorganized and cleaned. Then we have bed time for Liam. Then we either clean more or we relax. I usually take a hot bath and read while Anthony plays a video game. Sometimes, I play the video game. It depends on my mood.
My weekends often include a lot of errands and time spent with the family. Whether it be meeting my mom for something or just hanging around the house with Liam and Anthony, I don’t get much time alone not being bothered. Life is busy right now. I wouldn’t change it but sometimes, I wish it would slow down.
Feel free to ask any questions about my day that you have! What does your day look like?