View the full 2018 Spring/Summer newsletter here.
Here’s an excerpt from Emmaus DSP Mikayla Brinker, reflecting on her experiences with Emmaus resident Patty, who passed away this year:
“On the day of my interview to become a Direct Support Professional, I admittedly was nervous and unprepared for what awaited. I had never worked with any population outside of hospice before, so the thought of meeting new people and experiencing a whole new side to caregiving was exciting yet intimidating. I had made the trip from 3 hours away to pursue this job after having fallen in love with the description of the work I would accomplish.
Upon entering Jordan House for the first time, I was greeted at the door by a woman in a beautiful sun hat by the name of Patty Taylor. She introduced herself to me as I nervously entered the building, and she began to talk with me about the things she liked about living in her ‘happy home.’ Patty turned to her support staff and told her, “that’s my girl, right there, my girl!” And, with a smile, she squeezed my hand and sent me on my way.
I never had the privilege of working with Patty directly, but she was my favorite part of coming to Jordan House any time I would be there. Each time I came to the office I stopped in to say hello to Patty, where she would always exclaim, “my girl is here!” Patty recommended me her favorite sights and restaurants in the nearby area, and told me all about her family that she cherished so dearly.
Patty is one of the most perfect examples of why being a Direct Support Professional is such a rewarding career. To know a resident is to love them; each member of the Emmaus family has opened their arms and hearts to me and every DSP that steps through the Jordan House doors, making us instantaneously members of the family. Emmaus is more than a place of employment—it is a community, support system, and a home.
To me, the loss of a resident or consumer never gets any easier, and hearing of the loss of someone who marked a milestone in my life makes me reflect on where I have been and where I am going. However, knowing that I was a part of something bigger than myself, a piece of the pie that fed growth and happiness in someone, brings a positive light to a dark moment. Although it hurts, losing people motivates me to continue forward and make a difference in other lives. Patty, I believe, helped us even more than we helped her. Because of her radiant happiness, kindness and genuineness, Patty was a constant reminder of why this work is so rewarding.”