“Well, this is something that I never saw coming.”, I thought to myself. I needed an immediate solution. My client’s bathroom is small, separated from the rest of her living area with a curtain to allow easy access for her wheel chair. The linen closet has one of those gold, ornate doorknobs that ends in a swirl and that swirl currently had me by my belt loop.
Think think THINK! I couldn’t reach the scissors on the sink to cut my belt loop. I couldn’t reach my client, who was standing unsteadily in front of the commode waiting to be guided down. I was stuck! Shit. I would pick today to wear these jeans.
Praying that her husband wouldn’t walk in and see through the flimsy curtain door, I did the only thing I could think to do: kicked off my converse all-stars, awkwardly climbed out of my jeans that were attached to the door and guided her down barefoot and in my undies. Let it never be said that this job does not require us to think on our feet.
The whole experience felt like it lasted an hour when in reality it was probably two minutes. After cutting my pants off of the grabby doorknob and putting them back on, I caught a glimpse of my client’s face. Utter shock. Suddenly, she was GUFFAWING! The kind of laughter that comes deep from the soul, causing her whole body to shake and tears to run down her eyes.
“You’re wearing WONDER WOMAN panties!”, she gasped, her shoulders shaking with uncontrollable laughter. That was it. I sank onto the floor as my own laughter mingled with hers. We were in hysterics. Her husband peaked in to see what was going on, saw us, rolled his eyes and left without a word. That got us started all over again.
There was a lot of laughter that shift. As the day wore on, I noticed her mobility was better, her pain level seemed more tolerable. She was engaged and curious. We went outside and sat in her garden. She gave me a recipe to try out for dinner and walked me through it, step by step. That day, she was fully present; fully in the moment.
Laughter is the best medicine, not because it physically heals but because it enriches life. It elevates the mood and in doing so has the power to alter perspective. Laughter makes the unbearable tolerable. It’s a quiet form of courage; a way of giving the finger to adversity. For me, it is an acknowledgment that joy exists in every situation, regardless of how dark it may be. Where there is humor, there is hope.
That shift was a reminder of why I love what I do…even though there are moments that I hate it. All it took was an unusual situation that required me to strip down to my skivvies and a willingness to be called Wonder Woman from now on by my client in order to renew my passion for what we do. I guess things really do happen for a reason.