Tomorrow May Never Come
28th of August 2012 was any normal day at work for me, school for my two young kids and work for my two oldest sons. They left every morning together to their workplace, as brothers. ‘See you tonight mum,’ David shouted, ‘love you.’
Callum was quiet that morning, something seemed different with his nature. I shouted ‘bye, I love you.’ I then took the kids to school and went into my workplace. I did 9-5 in a huge restaurant as a waitress, I had for 7 years. I will always remember this day it was good, beautiful and sunny. I enjoyed my job working with the public, building up a bond with all my community and regulars. I was a well known part of the team at the Wheelhouse. That day it was extremely busy. It was nearly 5 o’clock, I was sorting out my last bits and pieces, before the end of my shift in the back corridor. My husband then appeared behind me holding my little girl Ciarra.
‘Elaine, you need to come back into staff room.’ My little girl was crying, my husband was shaken. ‘There’s been an accident, Callum called, it’s David.’ Derek my husband couldn’t get the words out but all I can remember is him saying, ‘it’s a forklift’ I was shouting for him to take me to David and my other son, but he refused.’ I need to take you home’. I just fell to floor screaming and shouting, I couldn’t believe any of this.
David was my first child. Our Mother and Son bond was unbreakable, there was so much love, he was my best friend. We were always together laughing, joking, out walking with the dogs. David could speak to me about anything, I was 17 when I gave birth to him, he changed my life. I lived for him. I adored him, he was my life, as a young girl nothing mattered expect David. I ‘d lost my child he was dead, he didn’t return home with Callum. Callum came home that night but there was no sign of David, but still I sat all night and waited on him, waiting for confirmation. Realisation began, after that my body went into shock. I was ready for the long hard grieving battle in front of me, to stay alive, to exist while still being a mum getting up every day and trying to function.
I began to rebuild my life, which started with a career change, I found a job working in a care home. I needed to give people what I could, the respect, care and dignity their families wanted for them. There are residents that don’t have anyone, so I aimed to fill this space. I needed a career that fulfilled my needs and dreams, that made me want to get up every day, to live and give my love to people who need this safety, laughter and company no matter what age they are. I realised that I had a huge piece of my heart missing, that needed to be given to help and be there for others, I wanted to care.
I wonder if this was because my son didn’t live for me to give him my care and love, to help him fulfil his days. He was killed instantly. I never got to say goodbye you never know what tomorrow will bring. But in my life, I want to make a difference. If on any day I can make a difference to someone’s else life someone’s Mother, someone’s Aunt, someone’s Father or Gran, I will do that, to the best of my ability.
I love seeing my residents laughing, smiling and singing. When their morale in good, doing activities with them and making them look presentable and clean. Painting their nails or reading a newspaper, all the while giving them the upmost level of respect and love. I have turned out to be a very patient woman, I understand how to make someone feel safe. I do have much more confidence now, I feel like I could do anything. This is all due to having to fight through a journey of grief. I had many set backs over these years but I got back up and started again.
I rely on my residents every day to make me smile, I hope they feel the same towards me. Every day is different, every resident has different needs but they all need love, safety and to trust in me. To trust I can make a difference by delivering care to them in my own unique way. Life is so short, but I will make sure by being a Carer, I can give them all I can to give them a quality of life they all need. I will provide all my residents with a happy environment. Simple things, such as a cuddle makes a difference, just sitting and talking to them makes a difference, comforting them if there having an emotional day. Waiting for them to smile again. It makes me happy to see them, to have them smile again. I have learned to be a Carer is not just washing a resident, feeding them and then putting them to bed. Being a Carer is being their family friend, making them feel comfortable in their living space. Tomorrow may never come for these lovely residents. But at the end of every shift I hope I have made a difference to their day.
Tomorrow I will get up confidently, smile and do it all again. A Carer, a mum and a wife. taking the journey as a Carer has helped me but I have also helped so many more residents and their families.