To our frontline workers: nurses, nursing assistants, doctors, hospital employees, first responders, housekeeping, grocery, delivery, and transportation personnel, all people who are out front while most of us shelter in place, my admiration for you has no bounds.
I was talking with the staff of Walla Walla Community Hospice. Brad McMasters coordinated the Zoom meeting for us. In preparation he sent me “A bit about some of our staff”. His words are universal and am sure they will touch your heart as they touched mine.
His words remind us that those people putting their life at risk to care for us, to see that we have food, to respond in our time of need, are just like us. They have fears, families, dreams, aspirations, lives to live, just like us.
As we, the community at large, shelter in place and acknowledge social distancing these brave souls, our peers, our neighbors, our relatives put their fears, their lives, on hold for the benefit of the greater whole. How will we ever say thank you enough for their service?
Ode to Front Line Workers
We are single and have been alone in our apartment for nearly 7 weeks.
We are young parents, fearful of endangering our children and/or non-essential working spouses.
We are grandparents who haven’t held our grandbabies in over a month.
We are trying to manage our workload and our family life 24/7, including our children’s educational needs.
We have lost family members and haven’t been able to honor or bury them properly.
We have out-of-town family members ill with COVID-19.
We are leaders who pride ourselves on providing a calm and controlled environment.
We are anxious individuals who thrive on the routine and structure of the workplace.
We are huggers and touchers.
We are extroverts.
My DVD kit, Care for the Professional Caregiver includes the 28 minute video and the booklet, You Need Care Too: Self Care for the Professional Caregiver. This kit is intended for anyone who is immersed in the responsibilities of supporting, educating, and guiding a person and their family through the dying experience including nurses, social workers, nurse’s aides, chaplains, physicians, end of life doulas, Eleventh Hour volunteers . . . It offers suggestions for creating a fulfilling work environment, staying balanced and healthy amid constant sadness, and maintaining a happy, engaged personal life.