Monday, September 27, 2010

A New Career at Age 60

At my daughter’s suggestion I had enrolled in a Job Search program.

One of our assignments was to take our resume and an application to the County Personnel Office. I did as I was asked and did not give it another thought until much later.

One eventful day, our Work Program Instructor invited a person from the local hospital to speak to us. The lady mentioned that you do not need to be a nurse or a doctor to work in a hospital. There are 200 positions available at our hospital, she informed us. She talked about the billing department, the cafeteria, and then she mentioned the physical therapy aide who would walk patients, and assist them with mild exercise.

Now I don’t usually hear voices, but that day a little bell went off in my spirit and I said to myself, “I could do that.”

Later I spoke to my instructor about my interest in pursuing that new field. She explained that I would need to take a Health and Medical class, and that only a few were accepted. She helped me fill out the application, and I patiently waited for my interview.

To be accepted into the Health class was just like applying for a job. The day came for my interview and as I drove there, I went over the hard questions in my mind.

At the office, I was welcomed by two smiling nurses. We glided over the questions and answers until they got to the one I was dreading: “What is your weakness?”

I smiled and said, “My weakness is chocolate!”

The nurse laughed and said that is mine too.

A few days later I was notified that I was accepted into the Health and Medical class, and to show up at an appointed time.

Among other things, we learned medical terms, abbreviations, parts of the body, and how to give shots. Each week we were asked to bring in a newspaper clipping that dealt with health and we would discuss the articles.

Our instructor took us on tours to different departments to see what might interest us, and we wrote down our three choices to be an apprentice. I selected Physical Therapy.

My assignment was to give several hundred hours as a non-paid, trainee in the Physical Therapy Department. I learned to clean the whirlpool baths, apply hot and cold packs, and give a massage to the hurting area. We assisted the patients with exercise bands and pulleys. I loved every minute of it, but my assignment term was almost to an end.

During my time as a trainee, the County had not forgotten about me. One day I received a telephone call to come in for an interview. I told the lady that I was enjoying a class I was taking, and at this time I could not come in.

I told my supervisor at the hospital that the county kept calling me, but I told them no.

As time went on, one day, I reluctantly told my supervisor that my time was up, and I must stop showing up unless they had a job opening. I was informed that a college student was going to be hired as permanent, and there was no other work available.

A few days later, I received a telephone call, that circumstances had changed, and to come in because I was hired. I was so happy! This was an entirely new carrier for me but one I certainly was looking forward to. I expected to be a blessing where ever I was.

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