Did You Go To Work Today?
Written by Guest Blogger: Melody Lay COVT
When my children were younger, I enjoyed reading a children’s classic called Caps For Sale, by Esphyr Slobodkina. Published in the 1940’s, Caps For Sale tells the story of a peddler selling a multitude of colorful caps stacked high on his head as he walks through town. Attempts at selling his caps fail, so he soon becomes discouraged. He then decides to take a nap underneath a tree awakening to find a slew of monkeys above him with his caps. Each monkey mischievously tries on different colored hats while the peddler pleads for their return. Finally, in a typical “monkey see, monkey do” fashion, the monkeys throw all the hats out of the tree and they scatter on the ground around the peddler.
Like the peddler, therapists wear many hats on a daily basis. Your duties may overlap into areas that include administering tests, scheduling patients, parent meetings, teacher conferences, and staff training. Mixed with hats worn from our personal lives, our stack of hats becomes exceedingly tall!!!!
How do you wear your hats? We usually start our day with a stack of straight hats, ok maybe after our second or third cup of coffee, only to find during the course of a hectic day monkeys have snatched our hats and scattered them around the office. Which hat do I pick up first? In what order do I place them back on my head? Will my patient notice my crooked “therapy” hat or my parent conference hat sticking out?
A few weeks ago on a busy day those monkeys scattered my hats. Drained from a long day, including cleaning pee off the VT floor, the complexity of my last patient required every ounce of energy and expertise. On days like these, it’s important to remember these patients deserve the same creativity, energy, and enthusiasm my first patients received. Let’s be honest, some days require conscious effort to be the same therapist at 5:00pm as we are at 8:00am. Forty-five minutes later, after throwing tremendous energy into bilateral body activities, vestibular integration, bi-nasal occlusion activities, red/green games, and flippers, we came to our last activity. Standing above this precious six-year old girl, I adjusted the Wayne Saccadic Fixator as she stood under me watching with her big brown eyes.
What I heard next made me giggle, but made my day! With childlike sincerity, she innocently asked, “So Mrs. Melody, did YOU go to work today?” Smiling I answered, “Yes, my work is actually all the fun games we played.” A sense of gratitude and accomplishment came over me for in that moment, even if they were not, my hats certainly did feel straight.