Thursday Volunteer Work

Today, in the salon at St. Andrew’s I spent the day pushing residents back and forth from their living community to the salon. I realized that I have a special bond with the beautician, Jean. She and I get along really well and I am thankful that I have the rest of my Thursday’s to spend with her. She has a genuine love and care for the residents and enjoys doing their hair, even if they are picky sometimes. I helped her take out rollers from the ladies’ hair and handed her rollers to put in their hair. I also talked with or sat with the ladies who were under the hair dryer to keep them company.

Today I met an interesting character. I’d never seen him before, but he would prove to be the most intelligent (perhaps in a slightly annoying way – but I didn’t mind too much) and particular man that had come in to get his hair done. He’s one of those people that knows exactly what he wants, why he wants it, and how to tell people how to exactly accomplish it in the most perfect manner for his peace of mind. Needless to say, Jean and I were given a lengthy list of things he wanted done in a specific order. I definitely learned that I need to work on my patience. Jean treated him with the utmost amount of ease and compliance. I, on the other hand, found myself wondering how this man could be so particular. I caught myself mid-thought, however, and The Lord brought to mind everything that I have to have a particular way. Even though my case is not as severe as some, I have mild Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and have to have some things a certain way, or it makes me anxious or upset. I learned from thinking about all of this that I am no less particular than he is, just in different respects. By the end of the day I found myself not too bothered by his specific requests.

Some of the skills that I learned today, was better vocabulary and conversational eloquence. Although, I must say, I have not mastered it in the least. The particular man, however, had indeed. He spoke like he stepped out of Anne of Green Gables’ imagination or Jane Austen’s Bennett abode. It made me consider how I speak and caused me to have a desire to broaden my vocabulary and syntax in order to sound more mature and eloquent.

I didn’t face any problems today in the salon, but I did acquire new leadership skills. I now believe that I can carry on a conversation with a person who has specific needs and dutifully attend to them and work alongside them in a way that I wouldn’t have done before today.

Thursday Volunteer Work

On Thursday, July 2nd, I began my third day of volunteering at St. Andrews Village. It’s a Presbyterian living community. I am working mostly in the areas that provide care for people with injuries, people with forms of dementia, or people who are still okay in their mind for the most part, but need help getting around. This was my first Thursday which also means that it was my first day working in the campus salon. So far, it is my favorite part about working at St. Andrews. I brought people from the different living areas to the salon to get their hair done. I also brought them back to where they were staying, once they were finished. I helped put rollers in the ladies hair and helped to take them out. I also was there to help clean up the hair supplies and get things for the beautician.

I think the thing that blessed me the most about helping out today, was seeing how happy the residents were to see me. They really were glad that I was there to help and spend time with them. One lady kept complimenting me about everything. She said, “Oh you’re just torturing and teasing me because your so young and pretty! Oh to be young again.” I smiled really big and told her that I wished I had her hair because it was super curly (from a perm I found out) and it was pure white (naturally) like snow. I said that it was the perfect white color and that seemed to please her, because she started telling me all about how people compliment her all the time on her white hair and how she has to say every time that it’s very natural. I think she was my favorite lady to come in that day. All of the people were very very kind and made my day. They have the best smiles.

Today, I learned that I love the elderly a lot more than I thought I did. I never disliked them, but I really love them now more than I did originally. They have so many stories and smiles to offer and no matter how sad or boring their day seems to be going, they always light up when they see you. I have also learned even more that I am out of shape. Pushing all those wheelchairs around the campus really makes your arms, legs, and everything get a good workout. It is good, refreshing exercise though and I welcome the vigorous walking.

I gained more sympathy for the residents here today. We went to get one lady from her room to bring her to the salon and she said, “I want to get my hair done today. But my family is coming to see me.” We told her we would have her back with her hair all done by the time her family got there. When I brought her back to her room it was about 35 minutes later, but her family wasn’t there yet. She does have dementia and I wondered if her family was really coming or not. I hoped that they were because I was ready to sit with her myself and visit her since she seemed so lonely. I also visited a lady with the beautician after we had closed down the salon. The beautician said that she had grown close to this lady since she’d been working at St. Andrews and the lady was basically dying. I had to hold back tears as I saw the lady laying there in bed with oxygen and barely able to talk. I had only met her that day. I think the thing that will be the hardest about volunteering here will be getting attached to the residents and watching them die. I’ve already made friends with basically all of them so far and I just hope that they don’t all die while I’m there. I know that it’s morbid and depressing, but it will be sad to have to watch them fade away. I just hope that I can be their friend while they are here.

Along with gaining more sympathy for the residents, I also gained some practical skills. I learned how to be a good listener and I learned my way around the campus a lot better. I learned how to take rollers out of someone’s hair, how to clean hair dryers, how to keep people engaged while they are waiting to get their hair done, and how in depth the beautician’s book-keeping job is. One problem that I experienced today was a lady with dementia who didn’t want her hair done. It needed to be done but she was very impatient and kept trying to pull out the rollers and even threatened to throw the hair dryer (which was the kind attached to the wall) at me. I kept her calm as best I could by encouraging her and telling her that she was doing well and her hair would look so nice when it was done. I also tried to draw her attention to other things, like her baby doll. I held her hand as well and looked straight in her eyes because dementia patients like physical attention and eye contact.

I will use everything I learned today by not only appreciating what I have while I still have it and can remember it, but also by being a better listener and being more encouraging. Also, I should have some better walking and pushing skills. If anyone wants there hair set as well, I am confident I can do that. So feel free to contact me if you want a hairstyle from the past. In any case, I know that I will love working here over the summer and I can’t wait to meet even more residents next Thursday.

Creative Inspiration

I find it difficult to stay creatively inspired. My inspiration comes in spurts of crazy colorful ideas and then they all fade slowly back to a thick gray consistency that clogs my brain. I want to be creatively inspired to write and create things all the time. Is that too much to ask, brain? Apparently so. Another problem for my 3lbs of gray matter in my skull is that I can’t seem to come up with a completely original idea for writing. I have a 99% original idea for a book that I’m working on right now, but other than that, I don’t have a single original idea in my head – and it bothers me.

Do I actually have talent? Or is it just that I have an ability to take other peoples ideas, lop them together into something new, and call it my own? Is this just as good as coming up with a completely original idea? Or is it just what people do when they are desperate to have author-related talent like the “big name” writers? Half the time I wonder if I would even be able to sell a book. But, any more, it does seem as though people are copying ideas and concepts off of each other for books just so they can get famous. It seems they have a mindset like, “Oh. I see that Suzanne Collins has made it big. I think I’ll borrow some of those ideas so that I can make it big too.” Is this creative inspiration? Maybe it’s not really what the author wants to write about. Maybe authors just write what we want to read instead of putting down on paper what they actually want to tell the world through their book.

I don’t want to be an author like that. I don’t want to conform to what people want to read. I want to convey something through writing that I want to tell the world, whether I get famous by publishing it or not. One of these days I will have an idea all my own. An original thought that breaks through the gray sludge that clogs my brain. Something that brings out every vibrant and colorful thought that could ever cross my brain. Something that continues allowing the colorful creative juices to flow and allows even more original ideas to be formed. Whether I get famous or not by publishing a book, I want to write something worth remembering. Maybe that’s what everyone wants. Maybe sometimes they achieve that by pulling some little ideas here and there from famous authors. In fact, maybe this is what shows that we can soak up what is around us, and use it our advantage by turning it into something new and “original”. This is what makes a writer – using what sources you’re given in your brain along with what is around you in the world, books, movies, and God’s creation and finding that it doesn’t only help you say what you wanted to say all along, but it helps you say it better than you ever could if you hadn’t used what was around you for creative inspiration.

Stupid People Do Stupid Things

As it turns out, stupid people do stupid things. Who knew, right? I find that people anymore, are purposefully making themselves stupid in a sense. They are smart people, making stupid choices. Specifically I have been thinking of girls that throw themselves at men. Why do they feel the need to say, “Oh my gosh he’s so hot.”? Why do they throw themselves at any guy just because they want attention? That is not a good way to get attention in my opinion. It’s like this. If you want a guy to pay you good attention, then you shouldn’t flaunt yourself and practically beg at his feet. If he doesn’t recognize you for your exceptional personality and maturity and goodness of heart, then he isn’t worth your time and he doesn’t deserve you.

The sooner girls get this in their head, the sooner that 16 year old girls won’t be pregnant with drug beat jerk’s babies and end up with a baby who is fatherless. If we were all blind physically, then I think the world would be better off. No one would judge another based on their appearance, no one would like someone else because of their looks or only want to be friends with someone because they’re a popular attractive girl. We would start recognizing the worth inside each other and how stupid it is that we judge based on appearance and measure worth in appearance. But, after all we are smart people making stupid choices and making ourselves look like stupid people as a result. Until that changes, I guess we will all have to just watch each other’s perception of worth and attractiveness go down the toilet with all our opportunities of making something of ourselves to prove that smart people can make smart choices after all.  

Puppies

So I know this is weird… but does anyone out there who lives near Indiana, PA want a puppy? We can’t really support them because we already have 4 dogs and there are 4 puppies so you get the idea. They are 11 weeks old and they are beagle, retriever, boxer mix. There are 3 males and 1 female. The female is black and 2 males are black and the other male is brindled. I named them but people can change them if they really want. I named the big black one Thor and the littlest black puppy Loki and the girl puppy Jane. The brindled one is named Jax. He’s the different one so I gave him a unique name. They are all super cute 😀 I know my blog is not for selling my puppies but they need a home so I figured I’d offer. Four Footed Friends will take them in a couple days if we can’t find homes for them. So comment on here if you are interested. 

Quirky Habits

A quirky habit that annoys me is when people make their situation out to be more than it is just to get the attention of others. Like this for example, “Oh my goodness! Something just exploded in my basement! And at the same time my kid is throwing up and is really pale and it looks like I’ll have to take them to the ER.” When the real situation is a pipe was expanding to get heat through and the child just ate too fast and gagged. It’s like they just want the attention, or they’re just really naive about everything. But no matter what it is they feel the need to post it on social media. (I don’t know if that’s a quirky habit or what but I figured I’d voice it anyway)

A quirky habit that I like is….. well you know I’m not sure I really know any quirky habits now that I think about it…. I’m so insightful don’t you know.