This week has been a whirlwind! Every day has been busy and has gone by too fast. I have moved faster these past couple of days than I ever thought was possible, and to think that I’m only at Easter Seals for half the day. Tomorrow is the day that starts the re-accreditation process and everyone in the office is going crazy. My main task this week has been to help put together, verify, label, and make corrections on policy handbooks. I have made endless amounts of copies, hole punches, and tabs. I have removed and replaced tons of staples and paperclips. While all of these tasks may seem small, and a lot like busy work, I am excited to help the directors at Easter Seals any way I can.
Helping the directors came in a different form this week, in between the copies and hole punches, I was sent to the adult wing to observe in one of the rooms. I had expressed the desire to learn more about what goes on in the adult wing, so one day the directors decided it would be a good day for me to do so and sent me down there. That short walk to the end of the hall proved to be the highlight of my day, week even. When I walked into the room, I instantly made eight new friends. Most of them greeted me with a quick wave and a high five, some made squeals of joy, but all of them introduced themselves by telling me their name in sign language. This amazed me. The teacher told me a story of why she decided to teach them sign language. Nine years ago when the teacher started working there, many of the students were unable to communicate. This caused them to become isolated. Seeing these adults so lonely, she decided to teach them a way to communicate so they could make friends. So nine years ago, her entire class learned sign language together and now her students have friends and can communicate with each other. Her room was transformed from being quiet and cold into a warm, sociable place that her students love to come to. During the few short hours I was there, I learned how to sign most of the alphabet and the colors red, blue, green, and yellow. (We were playing Uno). It was such unforgettable experiences to watch these adults with different disabilities interact with each other, make each other laugh, and be able to communicate.
Although this short visit to the adult wing doesn’t exactly fit into the job description for my internship, it was an experience that will help me in my future career. I love interacting with the participants at Easter Seals and this confirms my desire to work for an organization that helps the disabled community. I wish I could share pictures of my new friends and all of the activities we did together, but due to confidentiality I am not able to. If you are interested in learning more about the adult services Easter Seals offers, visit their website today. This week may have been challenging at times, but the friends I made in the adult wing have been my sunshine. When I pass them in the hall, they get so excited and wave, they want so badly to get my attention. This makes my heart smile. Meeting these participants has made me even more excited to be a part of what Easter Seals West Georgia is doing for the disabled and their families in our community. Visit the blog next week to get an update on all the fundraising events coming up at Easter Seals.