When I was pregnant with MS, I decided to change positions and go from working in a public school to working for a rehab company that contracted with Nursing Homes. It was exciting at first: working with a completely different population and actually communicating with adults during the day. I started out working a few hours after school so I could get in some hours and training at my new position. I worked in a nursing home where the patients had some rehab potential: mostly stroke patients. I learned about dysphagia and modified barium swallow studies on the job. I had the help of a radiologist who was patient with me and taught me how to tell the radiologist what I wanted to look at and what I needed in order to get the information I needed to treat the patient. Things were good...for a while. Then, the company lost the contract to the 3 nursing homes in the small town in Ga. So, I "went on the road". I had to travel to the next 2 small towns and take over there. I had the manager breathing down my neck, wanting to know why I didn't have very many hours. Working for a company, it was all about money and numbers. And, being as ethical and the rule-follower that I am, there was no way I was going to bill a patient for something he/she didn't need. I learned about reading lab results to determine if the patient was getting enough nutrients, and if they weren't, if it was because of swallowing difficulties. I had the heartbreaking job of talking to the head nurse about families who refused feeding tubes, opting to have their loved one virtually starve to death.
Then, I was offered a position in the company as Assistant Manager. I was so very honored and humbled to be offered that position. At first, my area covered NW Ga. PERFECT! Except, after about a month in that position, my manager resigned (due to the high stress...her hair started falling out) and the assistant manager of NE Ga. was now the Manager. They didn't replace her, so I assumed the responsibility of assistant manager over N. Ga. I didn't want it; I didn't want to have to drive from outside of Chattanooga to Atlanta. I had 2 small children, the new manager wasn't married and didn't have any children. She didn't "get it" when I told her I wasn't going to get stuck in Atlanta traffic and get home to my kids late. I wasn't there for my boys when their babysitter's house caught on fire...with the kids there. My marriage suffered; the boys suffered. And on top of all of that, I didn't think I was making a difference.
So, when I was 8 months pregnant with YS, I went back to work in the public schools. I had worked with the special ed. director when he was a diagnostician. He told me the best he could do was a part-time position. I wasn't sure how we were going to manage with me just working part-time, but I figured I could always pick up some work through home health to make up for the difference. Then, a couple of weeks after that, he called me and told me that it had turned into a full-time position. He thought enough of me to hire me when he knew I would be going on a month's maternity leave after working for not even a month.
I've been back "home" in the public schools for 16 years. And, this is exactly where I belong. This is where I can make a difference.
So,why am I telling y'all all this? This video that a friend posted on Facebook got me to thinking about that time in my life where I didn't think I was making a difference. I learned alot those 2 years. I learned that 1) money isn't everything, 2) the public schools is exactly where I belong, and 3) document, document, document!