Posted by: soulshinemoments | March 6, 2014

The Universe is Unfolding as it Should

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The one and only reason I am able to take the time to type in here is because I obtained a glorious, unexpected, amazing day off from my normal hustle and bustle routine. I have been spending the day reading, painting, drinking hot tea, and playing with Jackson on this dreary, rainy day. Mmmm…Happiness.

My job at the nursing home has been going well. However, they are at a record low number of admissions this week and therefore didn’t have any more assessments for me to do for the rest of the week. I like the extra money, but on this particular week, the time off sounded even better. It also made me realize that I don’t feel like working at the nursing home is going to be a permanent spot for me after graduation. It is exactly what I need right now, but it is temporary. I constantly feel a quiet tug on my heart strings that Ohio is where my family and I are supposed to be after graduation. I’m nervous about making such a leap and Jack is nervous as well, but it just feels like it is the next challenge we need to conquer. Still, though, one day at a time.

Yesterday while working at the nursing home, I met this lovely lady. She was an 82 year old retired social worker from Canada. She walked with a cane and had a cross marked in ash down her forehead as it was Ash Wednesday yesterday and she is a practicing Catholic. Her ex-husband was dying of Alzheimer’s disease, mostly unresponsive and nonverbal, and lie in the bed next to us as I completed his assessment with the assistance from his ex-wife. She told me that they had been married for 22 years and had had a great marriage together. Well, they had great times together in the beginning of their marriage…until the man left her for another woman–a member of their church congregation. But, they had 3 children together and were still able to stay friends. The man had since remarried another woman, and the three of them were are able to be friendly toward each other. She had been taking care of her ex husband (along with his current wife) for the past three years while he was hospitalized. She visited him once a week and brought ice cream to him when he was still able to eat.

I commented on how good of her it was to be able to forgive him and take care of him when he was in such need.

“Oh, well, you know. It was a long time ago. And, we had so many good times together. Plus, God says that we are to forgive in order to be forgiven by Him.”

At some point during our conversation, the patient’s eyes fluttered a little bit and his ex-wife noticed it.

“Hi, babe.” She ran her fingers over his forehead. “Are you with us? Do you hear us talking about you?”

He, of course, remained non-responsive.

She began to rub his shoulders and said, “I’ve noticed that sometimes when I rub his shoulder with his blanket padding my finger tips, his tremors stop.”

I was amazed by the love of this woman. She told me how she had loved her job as a social worker. She was adopted as a child and then worked with adopted children as their social worker. She also worked as a child advocate. Now, even though she is retired, she still does volunteer work through the Catholic church. When she asked me about myself and I told her I was in my last few weeks of graduate school for social work, she grasped both my hands and said, “I think that’s wonderful. You are going to make an excellent social worker!”

My day at the nursing home has been filled with many beautiful and interactions with patient’s and their families. I love hearing about people’ lives. I never really thought about working with the elderly before until this internship. Now it is something I definitely wouldn’t mind doing.

Our hospice Chaplain let me borrow a few books to read to some of my hospice patients. One of the books I stole from him was entitled The Kindness of Strangers about a man who decides to hitchhike penniless across America. The combination of that book and having been tied down to school for the past 2 years has really given me a strong case of wanderlust. Jack and I are going to Austin, Texas in May so I know that will help. And then if we move to Ohio, that will help as well. I just want to travel so badly. I want Jackson to be exposed to way more than just some small town in Georgia. I’m not quite sure how to make this happen, but I really believe it is important.

I believe another reason I have been feeling so euphoric, calm, and creative lately is thanks to my yoga practice. I decided to purchase a month membership this month. I’ve practiced the past six days in a row. I am so hungry to learn more and go deeper in my practice. I feel such a huge amount of gratitude every time I am able to make the space in my schedule to roll out my yoga mat. But, today, I honored my body and took a break. My body definitely needed it.

Well, I think I am going to do more reading for school. Just wanted to post a quick update. xo

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