A couple of days ago I went outside to enjoy my coffee on my back patio. As I sat down I looked up at the sky and there was this beautiful eagle riding the wind currents & enjoying the air.
In that moment I was reminded of my dad who used to tell me to soar with the Eagles. After he died several year ago, the next morning when I stepped out from my camper and looked up, there were birds flying in the sky.
After the amount of suffering he went through at the end of his life I remember thinking that the birds symbolized his freedom and that everything would be okay.
That same sense of peace flooded me when I saw the eagle from my back patio. But it also made me remember that my brother would have turned 45 in March. It also reminded me that both my brother and my dad spent their final years of their lives in nursing facilities due to their high level of care needs.
I cannot even imagine what it would have been like to have them in a nursing facility and not even be able to visit them! There is that part of me that appreciates the fact that they are not here suffering and worrying about the virus invading their nursing facility.
Also I would be remiss if I didn’t mention my observations about what happens in these facilities.
The patient to caregiver ratio in these facilities is abysmal. The level of care many of the residents require is 24/7. It is exhausting work to argue with grown adults to ensure their care need sare being met. It can be tiring to convince people to take their prescribed medications or to help them navigate down the hall for the social moments.
I recognize a facility is not an ideal living arrangement. But then again, neither is living in a hoarded home with only a “goat path” to get to the bathroom. My perspective on these facilities is that they are necessary in many cases. They can also be life-saving and sanity saving for the families.
If you are a person that works in healthcare I applaud you. Your kindness, your empathy and your humor make it manageable. I thank you and commend you for doing this work.
The people that I know that are nurses, CNA’s, respiratory therapists, social workers and a myriad of additional folks in caregiving roles don’t do this work for recognition or accolades. They go into the most exhausting environments and find great reward in the care they provide for another human being.
The fact that they are currently forced to reuse disposable masks is appalling. I know that it’s like going into battle without the proper gear. We need to do better to support the people who help us heal or in some cases help us transition out of this world.
The stories that I hear from people who work in this industry make you wonder what on earth we expect are other fellow human beings to do in the course of a work day. If you are a human you have needs.
It’s *just* possible you might need to pee a few times throughout your work day. You also might need to drink some water and eat some food so that you can keep going. Working in an environment where this is looked down upon frowned upon and dismissed as unimportant sends the wrong damn message.
If you think that nurses or medical personnel shouldn’t pee or eat food during their shift; you are wrong.
If you think the struggles of their patients don’t impact them; you are wrong.
If you have ever been in a position to require care those people keep you alive. If a family member has ever required care the same people kept them alive.
Many people will often say it’s not personal. It’s business. It’s how we operate. It’s how we’ve always done things.
But if you are a person and I am a person and we are having an interaction; it’s always personal. Something that I learned from both of my parents is that people are people.
It doesn’t matter if you are the janitor, the CEO, a waiter, a chef, a homeless person or the president. No matter where we are on the perceived “value” scale, we all matter. We all want to be valued and treated with some degree of respect.
If you have never considered this, please take a moment and examine how you address people. Think about how you are interacting with the people in your life.
If you don’t like what you see reflected back in the mirror, work on changing that.
Remember: People are people first, no matter what.
Tammi Moses is the founder and Chief Encouragement Officer of Homes Are For Living, LLC dba The Hoarding Solution which is a Veteran Woman Owned & Operated business located in Oak Harbor, WA.
Tammi provides virtual consultations, on-site assessments and workshops on the issue of hoarding. She believes in inspiring others to take their adversity and use it for the greater good. She is the voice of #AKOPTH-Adult Kids of Parents That Hoard. She is also a voice & advocate for #YLITH – Youth Living in The Hoard. You can connect with Tammi at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Facebook & Instagram @TheHoardingSolution.