Friday, September 24, 2010

Why Can't I Remember to Title my Posts?

My blog has been sort of left to its own devices lately. I've been very busy with school. I've been doing a lot of writing, a whole lot of writing. I've actually begun to get a bit 'ahead' on my writing assignments. A six page report for OT. A six page report for English Comp all in the same week. A history project, with power point presentation. Trying to keep up with my regular writing assignments. Meanwhile, I'm still trying to stay on top of my reading and other things. I've got so many books this time around. Sometimes, when I lay in bed at night, my mind spinning around with all that I've got to do, I find myself getting scared. It's impossible, I think. I can't keep up. But on the heels of that, I find myself realizing that I am. I've adopted the motto, 'Keep your head down and work like crazy.'

I love my classes, and let me tell you something that I have discovered. I was sitting in class early on, and I listened to the teachers telling us about what occupational therapy is. Isn't that funny? I had a vague idea, but the reason that I chose this class is because my friend Mary pointed out that they were always advertising for occupational therapists in the paper. I began to look, and she was right. I noticed that most of these places offered money for your continuing education credits, and I liked the idea that I could go on taking classes part time, and be reimbursed. So I signed up for Occupational Therapy, because I wanted a good steady job with benefits. There you have it. That's why I am where I am.

In any case, in the beginning of the classes, as I said, we heard a lot about what it is to be an occupational therapist. As I listened, I was amazed to realize that I've done occupational therapy. I didn't realize it, but I have. I lived in Michigan in the late eighties and the first half of the nineties, and I took care of a gentleman. His name was Mike. He'd had a stroke. He was a naturalist, and a chemist, and a golfer, a father, a husband, and a social person, but this stroke had been a bad one, and he was left sitting alone in his house looking out the window at his birds. He was thin and pale, but all around him there were pictures of him tanned and healthy. On his boat. Skiing. In the woods. At his cottage. (He lived next door to Roger Tory Peterson, can you imagine?) I've never met such a wealthy man who was so poor. Really. His wife was mortified at his incontinence and the fact that he could not control his saliva. She would not eat with him. She actually was rarely home, in fact. I developed an ear for Mike's speaking, and we began to talk. A lot. I'm a blabber. Turned out, so was he. And once he began to talk, I began to figure out what he wanted, what he needed. We began to do things. Once he talked longingly of just watching lightning bugs. He lived in town where there were none, and he missed it. So one night, I loaded him up in the car, and we went to a field and sat there in the dark eating our ice cream cones and watching the fireflies. Once Mike spoke about how he loved fresh trout, and so I brought a fresh trout in. With its head still attached. He scaled it and breaded it, and I cooked it, and we laughed so hard that night. I'd never cooked something that looked back at me. When I first put the pan on the store, it seemed that its mouth moved a little, and it startled me so much that I leapt back with a shriek, dropping the spatula. Those years with Mike were so rewarding. His successes were my own, watching a lonely man come back to life was a wonderfully rewarding period in my life. To find that what I'd been doing was actually what I was being trained for now was a shock to me. I found myself getting tearful, even, although I think/hope that no one noticed. All I could think was this: "I can do this. I can be good at this. I will have a job I love." I was so filled with gratitude to be where I was, and mindful that my feet had been set on this path long before I knew where I was headed. How very blessed am I!

In any case, I've got to get going. A lot to do today, but there is some exciting stuff going on at other people's blogs. Bill had a very exciting post on the bears of Cross Island. Tim and I enjoyed it greatly. Whitestone had an interesting post about pelicans. I never would have thought of them migrating through Iowa of all places. Bush Babe had emus, even managing to capture a picture of the very rare four legged two headed emu. Novel Woman cracked me up with her latest video spoof. I never saw the movie 'The American', but movies about assassins aren't my cup of tea, but it looks like 'The Canadian' would be a lot of fun.


A Novel Woman said...

You made me cry today with your story about Mike. He must have felt so grateful and relieved to have you in his life. You brought such joy, all by recognizing that the little things - fireflies, a fresh trout, stimulating conversation and laughs - are the things that keep us going when things are bleak. Imagine if we all did that for the people in our lives, big and small?

You are precious. Look up the official definition of precious. That's you.

steviewren said...

Debby, I want to find a job where I feel like I was meant to be! You made me cry with the rightness of being in the right place for yourself and for the other person as well.

The Factory said...

Hello beautiful. You well ?

Anonymous said...

I always knew OT was just right for you as you are such a great communicator and care for others. You will be up to the challenge of what you have to do because you have what it takes. Don't doubt or under-estimate yourself. You are right for OT also and have already proved so much. Enjoy the journey, tough though it will be at times. Knowledge like that is the lightest burden to bear and opens so many doors.

Loved the story about Mike.

Keep well Love Barb x

Pencil Writer said...

Keep up the good work. I'm happy for you to know that you're doing what you should be doing. So many people never love the work they do.

BUSH BABE said...

You know, none of this surprised me. You have an ability to empathise with others - makes for a great writer and (clearly) a great OT. You are just starting to 'hit your straps' as my Dad would say.

*sighs contentedly*

quid said...

So much reading, so much writing. It feels you are sometimes absorbed by it. Titling your blog entries is the least of your worries! Keep doing so well in school, it keeps you invigorated. I have a temp job right now, and three possibilities where I am somewhere in the interview process. One of them is in Orlando, working for a nonprofit that trains developmentally disabled adults. I relish the thought of hiring and working with great OT specialists.... both of my freshman year in college "neighbors in the next room" were in OT. It takes a special person. You are that person.


WhiteStone said...

Hey, Debby, I think you're headed into a good field. You'll do well.
As for the pelicans in Iowa...we drove out to the lake last night and did not see a single far, all we've seen is the loner who landed in town.

Cara said...

I loved Mr. Mike, you should throw up a few more stories about him.