I hate holidays. Next year I have a feeling I will like them so much more.
I need to be thankful though. I am thankful for my family, for my job, for the LeGrande family, for the Hart family, for the Crutchfield family, for Cara, for my job, for my oldies, for my health, for my intelligence (on most days). I am just grateful.
I wanted to create a new habit of journaling/blogging everyday. So this is today’s attempt. I am shooting for 21 days of digital journaling before I start handwritten journaling.
P.S. Please enjoy Maple for a second day in a row. He got dressed up for the holiday. Hmm… might need to start making bunny outfits. Can you say Santa Bunny???
I hate holidays. I miss having big family get togethers and having my parents around for holidays. Chicago is just too far away and so expensive to fly to. Today has been a rough day. I found myself crying ALL day… from watching feel good things. I feel mom and dad sick today. I miss them…. So, today it is hard to feel happy.
But, I still feel so blessed. Today I am happy that I cuddled with Maple. Maple is our dwarf bunny at work. He stays inside and brings so much joy to our seniors and their families. He is just so stinking cute that you can’t help but feel happy seeing him.
On days when you find it hard to be happy, what do you do? Please leave a comment and let me know.
Saturday I went painting with Aisha. It is a supportive living home for a couple men with developmental disabilities. On Halloween one of these men was looking forward to trick-or-treaters. Last year he stayed up all night long and was so disappointed that no one came. I was lucky enough this year, as a 33 year old adult, dressed up as Little Red Riding Hood, to go trick-or-treating. I was in tears seeing the joy on his face as he excitedly hobbled down the stairs to give me a piece of candy. I fell in love with him and would willing spend my day off making his house more of a home. This man looks forward to two things every year: Halloween and visiting his parent’s grave on Thanksgiving. It broke my heart that I have so much to be excited for and this is all he has. I told Aisha I wanted him to be excited for more and I would do what I could. I made him card kits to send cards to his friends and am planning on buying him little presents for Christmas. I wish I could do more. But will be content with craft kits and home make-overs.
Today while leading activities, the above quote was mentioned. I loved it… and told my oldies I needed to write it down so I remembered it. They always laugh when I write things down, only because they get it.
After reading that quote, one of my residents asked if I said hi to strangers. I couldn’t say yes. I find myself staring at my feet when I am in public and avoiding eye contact with the strangers that could be my friends. It reminded me of a little experience yesterday. After lunch in Bellevue, we were leaving the parking garage as a lady was crossing the street. She was smiling. Not just smiling, but grinning. She wasn’t wearing headphones, she wasn’t on a phone, she was just smiling. I said, “Man! She is happy to be alive. Why can’t I be that happy?” I discussed this with my residents. What stops us from smiling ALL THE TIME? We made a list. A rather long list of reasons why. I then erased it wrote the question on the bored again and asked one more time what stops us from smiling all the time. Before anyone could remake the list, one of my little old ladies called out, “Nothing!”.
How true is that? Nothing is stopping me from smiling all the time and saying hi to my future friends/strangers. Tonight on my way home I drove with a BIG smile on my face. I wasn’t listening to music, I wasn’t talking on the phone… I was just smiling. I looked to the left at a stop light to see a lady pointing at me and I waved. Mr. Rogers was right. At that moment, my red light stranger was a friend.
I have never considered myself an artistic person. Creative, yes. Artistic, no. When I transferred to Aegis of Kent, we restarted doing weekly art lessons with my memory care seniors. It was a stretch and at first hard. After commuting for 4 years I kind of lost touch with hobbies and things I liked to do. It has been hard to get in touch with that again. I told myself I wanted to learn to be artistic, or at the very least to enjoy it. I am lucky to work for a company that is dedicated to bringing life enriching experiences to our seniors. Friday I went to a regional training where we experienced art. White chalk/pencils, watercolor pencils, and canvas rolls. It is so encouraging to receive training and support. I can not wait to bring these mediums to my seniors, AND to experiment more with them myself.
My best friend said there are pretty much four levels of creativity. Below Standard, Normal Standards, Above the Standards, and Laura Standards. She said most people like to one up others but I “two up” people. This year for our family holiday party at work I am doing “fancy” invitations. It makes me happy to do things creative. Especially for others.