So, I am officially unemployed. Gosh, I despise that word. And yet, there's no other word for what I am at this moment in my career. Even though I knew the moment was swiftly approaching, it felt a little surreal. Being a social worker is such a huge part of my identity. I'm not sure what to do with myself until the next job appears! I apologize in advance to all my friends, family, strangers, and my Coastie if I try to "social work" you because I feel the need to help, comfort, encourage, engage, or interview someone.
But, in a strange way, I feel peaceful about leaving this job here in Florida. If you and I talk regularly, you know of my struggles with the administration, the gossip, the politics and ethics. But I fear I never talked enough of my wonderful, quirky, wise, hilarious, sweet, scared, and sick residents. I've said it a million times: I never, ever thought I would work in a nursing home. Never. My grief and pain over my grandparents' deaths are still too real and fresh in my heart (although its been almost 1.5 years). I didn't think I would be able to separate my grief and love for my grandparents from my residents. Thankfully, I was able to make that separation. There are moments I will never forget, however. Telling a wife that her husband lying next to her on the bed was dead and having her cry in my arms... praying and singing 5 residents to their heavenly rest... holding a woman's hand as she cries for her mother... The list can go on and on.
So, for now, I will be grateful for the hard lessons learned, the sweet and funny moments, and the knowledge that I am in the right career field.
Here's to one ending to Team Preston's new beginning in California!