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Jody Vance

Lynn Colliar

Growing up Teagan – by Lynn Colliar

To all those who mean well, but sound mean…
My beautiful girl is turning 6 in a few weeks. She is off the charts in height and weight – she’s also a great conversationalist… so many people make the honest mistake of thinking she’s older than she is.

 

She’s been in the 99th percentile since her first year… back then it was only me who had to explain her age compared to her size.

 

One example stands out to me, and i’m sure you’ll understand why.

 

It was a beautiful spring day – we were at the park with lots of other littles running around. The moms were standing off to one side when my 18 month old ran over to me and gabbed something only I could understand, we both laughed and she ran back to the slide… one mom gave me a “knowing” look and said – yes, out loud – “That’s what happens when you have children when you’re older.”

 

I was so shocked at the inference I’m sure my jaw dropped. I said “she’s 18 months old… and who cares if she’s 3 – you don’t say things like that to anyone!”

 

We left the park.

 

Now Teagan is getting it first hand… most comments are coming from the right place, wanting to say something kind – but not realizing for her little brain to hear over and over again “you’re so big” “it must be hard to be so tall” “no one’s going to push you around” “you must be the biggest kid in kindergarten” “are you bigger than all the boys?”…. it starts to stick.

 

She asked me the other day if she’s always going to be a giant. If everyone is always going to tell her “she’s so tall” like she didn’t already know that… my almost 6 year old is already aware she is somehow “different”. Her chin wobbled as her eyes pleaded for me to tell her she was going to be “average”.

 

She’s been trying to conquer the monkey bars at school. It’s tough when you weigh 60lbs and you can only get 2 rungs along before you fall. And your 40lb friends are hand over hand scampering across.

 

But she is tenacious. She isn’t giving up. In a week she’s managed to get to 4 rungs… the end goal is in sight.

 

She’s so proud of being almost there. My tall, strong girl.

 

So, if you see her on the monkey bars, sweaty-headed trying time and again to do them, please – feel free to encourage her.  She loves talking to people – so please chat with her – but remember, their wee brains are sponges and your words will stick with her.

 

 

She hears the same comment over and over… and no one is saying it to the kid beside her.
I’m tall. Glenn is tall. It’s a no-brainer T will be tall.  But we want her to be proud of her height. To own it. Not to feel it’s something “different” that she should be ashamed of.

 

Now go, my monkey, go.

 

UPDATE:

monkey achieved her goal yesterday!!!! That’s one tenacious girl  see video here:

IMG_1733

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Guest Contributor, Justin "Drex" Wilcomes

“Oh Andy” – by Justin “Drex” Wilcomes

 

“Oh Andy”, I find myself saying that about 100 times a day with my new-ish furry friend. You know what i’m talking about? When you open your door to a new family pet, it’s fair to say that in the first few months you are generally always amused, shocked, alarmed or sometimes downright disgusted by some of things you learn your furbaby can do. For instance, Andy’s favourite food seems to be his Step-Brother Rocco’s vomit. Classy.

How did I end up opening my door (and ¾ of my bed) to a 7lb animal? Well I wish it was the world’s most interesting story. I’ll save that for his step-brother Rocco, and another time, that’s more of a war story. Andy’s is pretty common unfortunately. A well intentioned family got him as a puppy for their daughter, the relationship broke down, and it became obvious to them that he would not get the attention he deserved, so he wasn’t always placed in the best situations for the first year of his life. So my radio colleague Claire (who is one of the best dog mamma’s I’ve ever met) kinda took Andy under her wing and looked out for him, lots of sleepovers with her two girl puppies, tummy rubs, walks, you know the drill. But he ultimately needed a forever home.
I was turning into a bit of a couch potato, I’m in a relationship, but (at the time) we lived apart because we love(d) our own space. So I would come home to an empty house, which is never fun after talking about politics, world & local news on the radio – for four hours a day. I had been thinking about rescuing an animal that needed a forever home. It was most likely going to be a cat, as I’ve always been a cat guy (even as a kid). We had both dogs and cats but I always hung with the latter, for whatever reason.. Even when I first moved to Canada 8 years ago I was a volunteer kitten wrangler for one of the local rescue societies here in British Columbia.

So, I had been thinking about it for a long time, I’d watched my partner go through the same thing for over a year, visiting the BCSPCA every couple of weekends, to meet candidates, and see if there was a connection with one of the many adorable and forever home worthy furry friends. It took months for him to meet Rocco. By chance I saw a photo of Andy on Claire’s Instagram, I asked her about him, and found out that he might be looking for a new home. I said “ME” on the spot.

That weekend I met him, he didn’t like me at first – he barked then walked away – but as I do with all animals (even Racoons) I thought he was adorable. Then it fell through, the family had changed their mind. I lamented about what could have been, and got back on with it.

Three weeks pass and I find out, they’re ready to give him up… again. Claire asked if I could come by and get him that weekend, I said yes, walked back to my office, immediately turned around went back to the studio and shouted “Today!” at Claire, that very afternoon my new doggy daddy life started.

Honestly I didn’t even know where to start!

My partner Brian took the lead, we went to Tisol, got him good food, got him new toys, new leather collar, new leather leash, new bedding.

Everything, spoilt him rotten.

I even got the jumbo peanut butter tub knowing that there would be peanut butter stuffed KONG’s on the menu from time to time, It was something I had loved watching Andy’s step-brother Rocco lose his mind over. Who ever knew that a hilariously shaped piece of silicone stuffed with peanut butter would keep a dog occupied for a considerable amount of time?

So, about Andy. Andy is…. well… ON. He’s got more energy that a kid that’s only been eating sugar at the midway. He’s always ready to play, and always ready to roughhouse. He thinks he the biggest dog in the room. (don’t they all?) But he’s more than happy to chill on the couch with me while we watch Colbert.

I made all the mistakes in the first few days, I let him sleep on the bed, i didn’t take him out right away first thing in the morning, i picked him up when he started barking at dogs, you know…. all the mistakes.

We’re on the right track now. He has a trainer named Hayley who teaches him and me how to be better at all things dog, plus she also doubles as his doggy daycare. She usually has anywhere between 3 and 8 dogs a day that she and her crew look after, from other Chihuahua’s to cattle dogs, pit bulls, you name it she has them all and they go for huge forest hikes up in the north shore mountains of Vancouver during the day which is better that sitting in a house all day.

What’s fascinating about Andy is that there wasn’t much structure the first year of his life, so when I got him just before his 1st birthday it was obvious he didn’t even understand “SIT” so we literally had to start at the beginning, and as you know if you’re reading this… It will take time.

In the meantime, I think my radio station CKNW should switch out the green shag pile rug in the producers pit as Andy thought it was grass, and well…you know.

Another thing I discovered tonight, while writing fun things about Andy as he stares at me from the couch he’s still bashful after he was spoken to about stealing my dinner.

On the way home from the radio station tonight I picked up my favourite meal, a rotisserie chicken, I get the leg and thigh…(my favorite part). I make the mistake of getting up from the table, for 30 seconds, to grab a glass of water and while in the kitchen I hear an almighty crash of cutlery….and the scrambling footsteps of a dog being spooked while standing on hardwood floors… (like Scooby & Shaggy when they’d get scared by a ghost). Ya. Like that.

I dunno, I’m still new to this. I might be bad at it, I’ll make a heap more mistakes, but he’s awesome, and I’ve had no end to the offers for people to dog sit him.

How can you not? Looks at that face!

Zoinks!

Here are a few extras, just because….

Jody and I met via Twitter, of all things.  I invited her to come and fill-in on CKNW — and now she does, a lot.  So….if you don’t like it, blame me. (written by Jody)

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Jody Vance

Working with Friends – by Jody Vance

Larry Hennessey

Me and Drex with a couple of political guests. (FTR, Drex is standing on books to be this tall.)

Working with friends can be tricky.

Over my years in broadcast I’ve been lucky enough to make life-long friends through work: Sarah Daniels, Claire Martin, Jim Van Horne, Alison Redmond, Becky Posh, Theresa Warburton, Daren Millard, Kevin Quinn, Jamie Campbell, Joe Leary, Cynthia Ott, Kathy Woodgate, Mike Hennigar, Patrick Zulinov, Cheryl Loveseth, Lucia Polifroni, Allison Cooper, Dean Bender, Richard Garner….god, the list is (thankfully) endless.  I could go on and on….but that’s not the point here.

The point today is, that for all of the friends I’ve met – and made – through work, I’ve also lost a great one.  It was so sad and shockingly painful.  The red flag went up our very first shift, I thought he was just having a bad day.  He wasn’t. I went into our gig, that would take us from “friends” to “co-workers”,  thinking it was the perfect storm of magic – it wasn’t.  Sure, we made the on air product work, but behind the scenes it was brutal.  Brutal. It’s a long story, suffice to say: our friendship was irreparably broken.

The person you know as your friend can often be wearing a completely different persona at work.  It was, and is, a very painful truth.

To say I’ve been gun-shy about working with my friends since is an understatement.  Nothing is “worth” losing a friend. Nothing.

In the past two weeks, I’ve jumped back into the friend/work pool.  (I must qualify that both friends that I’ve paired up with on radio, recently, weren’t as woven into my world as my lost one) It was with a good dose of nervousness that I dove in.

First at Roundhouse Radio — I was invited to fill in on the afternoon drive show, solo.  I wondered aloud to the boss there “if I might invite someone to join me”. Enter Larry Hennessey (who you have read here) — a pro’s pro, kind doesn’t begin to describe Larry.  We had never worked together on air before, and yet, after four days of togetherness it was clear that we could jive.  The shorthand came quickly, the respect and support was pure.  Time flew by and we were both sad to see our fill-in stint end. We loved it.

As the newly anointed “Pirate of Radio” in Vancouver — with zero time between — the following week off I went to my “other” day-job, filling in on CKNW.  I am thrilled to say that I get lots of shifts at The Top Dog, I love it.  Last week I had a chance to join Justin Wilcomes (Drex) to fill in for Lynda Steele on their outstanding Afternoon Drive show. Now, Drex and I had never met when he texted me, via twitter of all things, 18 months ago to see if I might like to “do radio”.  (It’s his fault that I’m AT CKNW.)  It wasn’t until this past Monday that we actually shared the airwaves.  Drex is a beast of a broadcaster, there is very little he won’t say – or do – in the name of great radio.  He’s driven and funny, kind and tough, all wrapped into one package.  We, too, saw time fly while on air.  I’m very excited to wake up tomorrow for more.

Life throws you curve balls, and sometimes the disappointments of a bad pitch can keep you up at night — as is the case with my lost friend — but the great moments of magic do heal you.

I’ve learned these past two weeks that every experience is unique.  You can’t paint it all with the same broad stroking brush.  Live.  Learn. Embrace.

You’ve likely noticed I’ve not named my lost friend, that is out of respect.  He knows who he is and I hope he knows that I love and miss him.  The interesting part of losing a friend, after trying to take a walk on the work-side, is that if given the choice — 100% of the time you’d save the friendship if given the luxury of hindsight.

Too late now for regrets. I’ve replaced that hollow place with a fortunate feeling, one that has me lucky to know that one can find fun when working with friends.

Thank you Larry and Drex — Lynda: You are up next…and I can’t wait!

 

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Claire Martin

Real Facts: Paris Agreement – by Claire Martin

A lot has been said over the past few days about The Paris Agreement – and what it means for any one country. So without getting into politics (seriously) – let me set the record straight about this Agreement. And I’m going to use overly simplified language here, not to demean anyone’s comprehension, but so that everyone understands exactly what the Agreement means for us and our planet.
 
1. The Paris Agreement is an agreement between 195 UN countries to deal with global greenhouse gas emissions. In this agreement the countries basically all got together and agreed to try really, really hard to slow down climate change by limiting their greenhouse gas emissions and to submit their own individual ongoing progress reports. For clarity I have to state that there are NO penalties within the agreement.

2. The agreement is NOT legally binding. But that doesn’t mean it’s toothless. If I agreed to help a friend – and (for example) said that I would pick their kid up from school – that is NOT a legally binding agreement. You can’t, strictly speaking, punish me if I decide to leave the child sitting on the curb. But — and this is a big but — you can shame me. You can avoid me, distrust me, and not make any more social agreements with me. Essentially turning your back on an agreement is bad for a relationship.

3. Sovereignty is the ability, inherent or granted, to govern oneself or self-determine one’s course. The Paris Agreement does not affect a country’s sovereignty.

The Paris agreement, signed in 2015 by 195 countries, does four simple things.

  1. It sets a global goal of keeping global average temperatures from rising 2 dec C (compared to temperatures pre-Industrial Revolution) by the end of the century.
  2. It sets a nonbinding agreement for countries to reach peak greenhouse gas emissions “as soon as possible.”
  3. It adds a framework for countries to become more aggressive in reaching those goals over time. In 2020, delegates are supposed to reconvene and provide updates about their emission pledges, and report on how they’re becoming more aggressive on accomplishing the 2 degree goal. 
  4. It asks richer countries to help out poorer countries: to give them capital to invest in green technologies, but also to help them brace for a changing world.

And it’s important to remember: The Paris agreement, as it currently stands, won’t stop global temperatures from rising. The point of Paris was to create incentives for countries to voluntarily grow their efforts to avert a warmer future. 

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Susan Young

Conquering Hills, Spills and Cancer – by Susan Young

 

A JOURNEY THAT CHAFES YOUR SOUL….AND YOUR BODY!

Everyone has a cancer story. I’m no different. Mine is not a personal story, but seeing the disease affect family and friends, has left me with the desire to make a difference. Or at least, try.
Four years ago, I embarked on a rather ambitious journey; The BC Ride to Conquer Cancer.

For me, this journey opened up a whole new world of training, bike fittings, comradery, fundraising, and of course…more fundraising.
Challenging doesn’t even begin to describe the experience. From the day you sign up to the day you cross the finish line; exhausted, emotional and chaffing all over.

I was very nervous embarking on my first ride. It was a huge crowd of riders, that seemed have all the professional gear! The event however, is very organized. There is an enormous amount of volunteers, and plenty of rest-stops with food, that you can recover at for as long as you need.
Training means wind, hills (yes, cycling up SFU can be soul destroying), and really early weekend mornings to try not to disturb my family. Over all the commitment was: one longer ride, 1 shorter ride per week for at least 4months. (Within a couple of weeks of the ride, I like to substitute distance for hills.)  I’ve fallen off my bike no fewer than a dozen embarrassing times as I get used to being clipped in. I’ve also made many new friends.

This year will be my third Ride to Conquer Cancer with the CTV team, but not my third in a row. The first year, I was surprised at what almost broke me. The hills are hard, but mind over matter, and I dealt with them better than I thought I would. The only time I felt like giving up was on the final stretch of the first day; on a long flat gravel stretch  – with a head wind so strong it felt like you were making very little progress. The more people that passed me, the more I wondered what I was doing there!

To be blunt, it’s too hard…and it honestly takes me over a year to psych myself up to do it all over again. The fundraising can also be taxing; $2,500 is a substantial amount to raise. Despite that I’m always grateful and overwhelmed by how generous people can be.
For this year’s ride, I plan to write the names of people battling cancer – donor’s loved ones – on my body in marker so I can carry them with me. The steep hills of the second day are nothing compared to their fight.
And I’m completely humbled by my fellow riders – many who participate every year. Many – who carry red flags because they’re cancer survivors themselves.

The BC Ride to Conquer Cancer takes place on the last weekend of August. 2,000 cyclists riding approximately 250 kilometres over two days, from Vancouver to Seattle. Day one ends at a central campground where you can enjoy food, beer, yoga, massages and inspiring speeches. You can sleep in a ride-provided tent, or choose to book a hotel (don’t judge…but a hotel with a hot tub calls my name!)

If you would like to make a difference in the world of cancer research, consider getting involved. You can donate, or volunteer, or pass the message along….or better still – ride!

I’m not particularly fit or determined. I just did it. And if I can, so can you!

 

– I had the pleasure of working with Jody at CTV. She was anchoring sports and I was directing. Our similarities have included working crazy early mornings and raising 9-year old boys!

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Claire Martin

Dear Claire… – by Claire Martin

Last Friday, I was lucky enough to snag a U2 ticket.
To attend a concert, that I had already been to, 30 years ago.

Judging by the average makeup of the crowd – I wasn’t the only one on a night’s trip down memory lane. My girlfriend even had in her purse the cut-out front and back swatches from her original tour shirt!

Yeh, we were going down memory lane hard; together, with faded props and 40+ thousand of our closest friends!

Needless to say, the concert was wonderful. For those of you that don’t know The Joshua Tree (and #really who are you?!) – it’s a “listening experience” type record (are they still called records?!). It was written in the tumultuous 80’s during a time of political unrest in England and Ireland and many of the lyrics and all the songs resonate profoundly for me, even to this day.

The first 5 songs “Sunday Bloody Sunday” / “New Year’s Day” / “A Sort of Homecoming” / “MLK” / “Pride (In the Name of Love)” sent me reeling back to Wembley, London, June 12, 1987 – the last UK date of the original tour. It made me want to pen this letter to the 21-year-old who watched raptly, buried in the exuberant crowd.
Dear Claire,

Chill out!
Stop worrying so much!
You’re going to be ok.
Life will actually get better than this.. and this is just the beginning.

Capture this moment though; burn it into your memory. Moments like this are rare, and they will become rarer and more precious as you pass 50.

Enjoy yourself as much as possible. Life experiences like this are the building blocks of your evolving character – and they will stand you in good stead for the tough times.

There will be tough times….but never more than you can’t handle. The strength you discover inside you will surprise you. So too the bonds you develop with your friends during the tough times.

Your women friends will become your rocks. Trust the ones around you right now – they will be with you for the next 30 years – tightly close, unwavering and supportive – cherish every moment you have with them.

Finally – reconsider the perm and leggings. (They do you no favours.) Trust me, you, on this one!

Love
Me.

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Jody Vance

Mother’s Day – by Jody Vance

Getty Images: Cora Niele

May is for Mother’s day. Happy for so many, tough for so many.

Some of us are lucky enough to celebrate Mother’s Day today — my thoughts are with those who crave this gift and can’t conceive.

This is not like Valentines Day with a broken heart, or Christmas during a divorce – this is harder.  (I speak from experience.)  I’ve done Mother’s Day after a miscarriage and have lived through it during fertility treatment, luckily I’ve also been through one while nervously navigating the first trimester of pregnancy.

This can be an incredibly sad time for those who are knee-deep in the struggle.  It’s a feeling that cannot be realized without having survived it.

Motherhood, becoming a mother, seems so simple to the masses —  “an accident”, “unplanned”, “an oops baby” or a “we were ready and it happened”.

Right now there are thousands and thousands of women struggling to conceive — crying tears of soulful failure — on Mother’s day.

I feel you.

I’ve been you.

Today I send this out to the universe because I want, even one, hopeful Mom to know that you are not alone.

One big moment in my journey to parenthood was when a very wise physician said to me: “It’s a miracle, you can literally do everything right and still not be successful in conception and carrying to term.”  It was devastating — poignant and heady.  In hind site, it was a comfort along the way.  Yes, we can use modern medicine to assist us in our desire to parent our biological child, but being a Mom isn’t about biology.  It’s about love.

Do not hate your body for failing you. (I did, and wish I hadn’t)  Do not feel a failure for infertility, it’s not your fault.

If your friend, or loved one, is going through this — talk with them about it. Bring it up.  Share.  The isolation of “not wanting to hurt their feelings” is the journey’s very worst part, believe it or not.

Food for thought on this day to celebrate a special level of love.

Peace.

 

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Jody Vance

Voter Turn Out – by Jody Vance

Dear President Donald J. Trump,

 

Sincere thanks to you today for teaching voters, world-wide, to show up at the polls on Voting Day.  We have watched what can happen to a Nation when one neglects their civil duty.

There have been many years, here in Canada, where voter turn out has been embarrassingly low.  Today, in my home province of British Columbia we are voting, en masse.  Hopefully in numbers rarely seen at polling stations, thanks to you.

Many in line to cast their ballots are doing so for the first time, some in their mid-50’s, and their reason for finally getting up out of the armchair is largely due to what they’ve witnessed you do with the power given by your “base”.  Today, I have personally over-heard many say that they’d “learned from Trump winning” — that they “will never sit idly by again”.  You have created a world ready to be better educated on platforms and facts — ready to do their duty, in the name of protecting our precious democracy.

We all witnessed you lose the popular vote, while taking swing states — we’ve learned the consequences of being lazy on election day.  The world believes, if given the chance for a do-over, you would lose in a landslide thanks to voter turn out likely doubling.

The world now knows, more than perhaps ever before, the value of their ONE VOTE.

Thank you and best regards,

 

Jody Vance

Proud Canadian

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Claire Martin

Slow Down, Smell the Roses – by Claire Martin

It has been brought to my attention that I have been posting a lot of “ahhh, life” photos recently (check @ClaireMartin50 on Instagram). And here’s the reason why.

1. At 50 I found myself unemployed and diagnosed with a rare form of melanoma
2. At 51 I found myself a fabulous new job and cancer free (6 months and counting).

As has often been noted on #MyBackYard – I’m an acerbic, sarcastic little shit of a person. Until very recently, when life got scary and real. Then, surprisingly, I found myself soft, caring, vaguely weepy, introspective and in awe of L’Chiam.

So why the change of outlook?

I have recently moved to the BC Interior – given up on the Vancouver market as I got methodically priced out – and I am thrilled with my choice.

I am lucky enough to have found a little piece of heaven in Vernon, BC. I wake in the morning to the sound of birds, and I go to bed in the evening to the cacophony of bullfrogs. Last night I heard thunder booming in the hills around me, and I’ve routinely watched the space-station crest overhead in the night sky from my little backyard deck.

Ahh-life.

I am not writing this to

a) extol the virtues of the BC Interior,

b) encourage people to give up on the most magnificent city in the world (aka Vancouver) nor c) feel some sort of misplaced jealousy.

I am writing this to say that at the grand old age of 51, I have decided to start treating myself to the life I’ve always wanted.

Now, let’s be honest: I’m not retired. I will have to work for at least another 12.5 years (yes, I’ve counted), to pay off this decision. And, admittedly, at times I find myself a little lonely. But I am surrounded by astoundingly beautiful scenery, I am finally sleeping through the night and I am actually slowing down.

So here’s the point of this note: at some point, we all need to slow down and smell the roses. We need to put ourselves first.

So here’s to posting a few more “ahhh, life” photos. May they bring everyone a little piece of quiet in what can often be the chaotic, rat-raced pace of life!

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Pete Quevillon

Kindness in The Winter of Bert’s Life – by Pete Quevillon

In early 2015, I made the decision to move my dad from an assisted living residence in Kingston Ontario here to BC. He was in need of more intense care and had no family left in Ontario. Seeing him two or three times a year when I went to Ontario for work just wasn’t leaving me with a good feeling and so I began the search for facilities here in Vancouver.

I toured several care homes and Windermere provided the opportunity for him to access a room as soon as we moved him. I knew several people whose parents had spent time at Windermere and all of them had very positive things to say about the quality of care.  While the first six months, until he became a BC resident, were at a full rate; once he became a BC resident he qualified for the subsidized rate. Fortunately for those on fixed incomes, the rate is a set percentage of  income always leaving at least 25% of pensions to bank.

As one would expect of a care facility, the rooms are rather Spartan but he has his own washroom and some of his own furniture and pictures to add a homey feel. There are regular recreational opportunities for residents, music, and a host of other diversions that residents can participate in at their leisure.

With the care of an aging parent, there comes the guilt associated with placing them in care…in my case lapsed Anglican guilt rather than Catholic guilt! Should I be keeping him in my home with private nursing care? Could we afford a more exclusive facility? Bottom line for me is that dad is happy and has people around him who truly care about his well being and are far more skilled than I in providing the necessary professional care.

I am a dedicated reader here on MyBackyard.press and have noticed a definite theme, of late, as many contributors are of the generation where care of aging parents becomes their responsibility,

It is all too easy to target our challenged, under-resourced, health care system with criticism — those concerns are certainly valid.  It is very much up to us to  be aware, and hold our politicians to account, to ensure improvements are made. Often lost in this conversation are those who work within the current system selflessly.  They regularly bare the brunt of frustration at the system and are targets of abuse, undue criticism and most certainly are underpaid.

As someone who has a parent in long term seniors residential care I see, up close and personal, both the shortcomings of our health care system and the extreme dedication and passion displayed by those health care professionals. Certainly I’m not alone in seeing, and being constantly humbled and moved by, the concern — and dare I say love shown by the health care professionals in my dad’s facility.

Very few of us could display the compassion and effort put forth in caring for a complete stranger — yet there they are with my Dad, day in and day out. From care aides and nurses to cleaning and kitchen staff, everyone seems to know Bert and constantly make conversation and take every opportunity to exchange some friendly humour and barbs with my dad. He thrives on the interaction and, despite his mild dementia and his inability to remember everyone on staff, he feels loved and valued by everyone on staff.

I’ve often said that the staff make him feel like Norm from Cheers…each time he comes back after our walks or trips out for lunch, he’s welcomed like a long lost family member. “Hi Bert”; “Where have you been Bert”; …all that’s missing is a cold beer on the bar!

I cannot imagine providing the same level of not only expert medical care to a nearly 90 year old, I’m not sure that I could maintain the cheery disposition and professional demeanour that is on display at Windermere at all times given the challenges of caring for seniors of widely varying needs. 

I would ask that our elected official, health care administrators and management continue to find ways to improve our medical system — but I also ask that we appreciate those unsung heros in our hospitals, clinics and care facilities.

To all of you, Bert says thanks!

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