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2nd Chaplain Mentor Training – Difficult Floor October 8, 2004

Posted by danucube in chaplaincy, Volunteer.
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Today I had my second session with a mentor in terms of Chaplain training. We went on a floor where there are long term patients from serious strokes to horrible car accidents. All these patients are paralyzed in one way or another and also cannot eat. I went on this floor last time also for a little bit. This time I went with a person who "specialize" on this floor. She is quite an incredible lady. On the floor, she knows everyone, from all the staff to the patients and their families. It was nice to see the family and patients "light up" when they see her.One patient is a young girl who had this horrible condition. Can't do anything except move her head a little bit and can have some emotion on her face. Her dad who is beside her looked really tired. When my mentor talked to the girl, I see a smile. When my mentor told the young girl about how her dog got sprayed by a skunk, I see a little laughter. Then when my mentor asked her to guess what she is going to dress her dog up as in Halloween? I see the girl with great effort actually mouthed the word "skunk" with no sound and smiled! Before we left, we prayed together with the family.Another patient we visited, he has improved a lot. He can actually move his arm a little now. He saw us and with effort moved his arms to welcome us. We basically prayed with him.Another patient was "guarding" the door in his wheelchair. I asked him whether I need to pay "toll" and got a smile out of him. He is going to learn how to use the wheelchair (it has all these electronic gadget on it for navigation). I suggested he try running over some nurses when he has the chance like what my mom used to try to do in her wheelchair once … We also prayed with him.

Today we visited quite a number of people. About 30 people in two hours (including family members). Sometimes according to my mentor the number is very low because a few patient like her to read Scritpure to them for like 45 minutes. Lots of the ministry on this floor is also ministering to the family, encouraging them, and praying with them.

A few of the patients have no family what so ever and we are really the only friends they have. A few patients have extremely devoted family members where they almost have a family member with them 24/7.

My mentor in her prayer always pray for the staff also. She always prayed that God will help the staff in their busy schedules to continue to treat their patients with dignity and to threat them as if they are treating Christ.

For the patients who are asleep, she would pray silently for them before going to other patients.

I've heard the coordinator of the chaplain volunteers say that my mentor has a real gift on this particular floor. I can see why. I think she actually has a calling on this floor. I hope I have a similar calling in the behavior health unit later on just as she has a calling on this very difficult floor.

Oh, I washed my hand like as if there is no tomorrow since the immune system of lots of these patients are low sometimes. Like I washed my hand after every patient contact. Never had my hand been so clean… better get used to it since I am going into nursing.

On this emotionally difficult floor, one is constantly reminded that life is fragile. But the image that is sticking in my mind right now is all the smiles that my mentor brought to the patients we visited. I am blessed to be able to go with her on this journey today.

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