Our waiting room has power. No, I’m not talking about the power in the waiting room, but instead the power of the waiting room.
I never realized how much power a waiting room could have until my first graduate student started seeing some of my patients. Up until then, I spent more time getting to know my patients than their families, which of course was my job. However, as my student became more independent, I was able to spend more time getting to know the families as well, and that is when I started to truly recognize the power of the waiting room.
Many of our families and caregivers--especially the ones that are new to the whole process of having a loved one with special needs--have never met anyone who also has a loved one with special needs. They have never been required to navigate the obstacle course that is habilitation and rehabilitation, and they are often floundering to figure out what their next steps should be. While we try to help them navigate the waters as much as possible as therapists, there is no replacement for families that have already “been there, done that.”
That’s where the real power lies--with the “experienced” families.
It helps--when you have to drag your child who is in full meltdown mode in the front door of the clinic--to have another mom look at you not with pity, but understanding. To say, “Yep. My little one just melted down in the grocery store an hour ago,” or “My child used to do that a lot. Here are some things that we tried…” or truly to just smile knowingly while wishing you well in their heart.
Most of the parents and caregivers in our waiting room are dealing with very similar things as you are. Some of them are new to this journey, some have been on it for a while. But we see you Mama; we see you Daddy, and we appreciate the dedication that it takes to find and give your loved one the best care possible.
Come in and see our beautiful waiting room and relax a little while our experienced therapists provide your loved one with the best care possible. And while you're here, talk with another parent who knows exactly what you’re going through. We welcome you. We hear you. We connect with you. It takes a village. Call us at 253.237.3405.