27th May, 2019
Author: Chinchu Joseph, Facility Manager, Vermeer House
You may be wondering, why I have come up with an article named “My life as an Epoch Resident”. Yes, I am also an Epoch resident among other Epoch residents and I am truly happy to be called so. I am a Facility Manager at one of the Epoch homes and I also stay in-house! So, I thought I should share my story here as well.
I still remember how I felt when I took the decision to join Epoch. I wanted to care for elderly as I love spending time with them, also I had this feeling that I am going to love what I do, because at the end of the day I wanted to be satisfied at my work. Having said this, I was not sure that how will I adjust with staying inside one of the Epoch homes along with all the residents - this was going to be a unique experience for me. But let me tell you, I have been working here for more than 1.5 years now and I have really enjoyed it. Having worked in major hospitals, MNCs & my role in clinical sales etc., this is the job I have enjoyed the most in my life ever since I started my career 12 years back. Many who visit Epoch, ask me about my experience about working with elderly and I tell them that this is the most gratifying job I have ever done and I want to let others know how lucky I am. I never felt like I am doing a job, instead I am living a life full of new experiences and learnings. Yes, my job is my hobby, it is my passion! The journey since my joining has been amazing indeed.
I had all theoretical knowledge about Dementia but never got a chance to completely take care of a person with Dementia. After coming to Epoch and spending time here, learning about the approach that is used here, I feel happy that I can take care of any person with Dementia across all stages.. How and what they feel, I can feel, what they think I can truly understand and I can communicate with them even in the absence of language. I strongly believe, one should be lucky enough to get a chance to take care of the people in need and I am really proud of myself that God has given me a chance to do so. .
I have been staying here with my daughter who is 8 years old and, the best part for her, is that she gets a lot to interact with all our residents. She loves all Nana and Nanis, loves to play with them, talk and spend time with them. It is not very common nowadays for youngsters to get the opportunity to spend time with seniors. Although I had my concerns initially, I must say she is so lucky to have been brought up in a senior living facility.
There are heartbreaking experiences also. Whenever a resident gets unwell even at the middle of the night, I will be the first person to be called. I have experienced residents take their last breath in front of me, a few I can say in my arms. I don’t shy away from the fact that I have felt broken and emotional because after all, professionals aside, we are humans. I help myself and my team finds solace thinking, they were in good hands, comfortable, free of pain and got the best care and attention as possible.
To summarise, every moment I am here, I love it. Even when I go on vacation I miss my residents, some of them call me to know how I am doing. When I am sick they call me and visit me, some of them offer to cook for me though that is difficult for them. Few of them love to visit me in my room and spend time with me. Such a heart-warming experience! I will never want to leave senior living sector as long as I can work. Who will want to leave behind all these wonderful experiences and the memories that will last for a lifetime?
Signing off for now. Would like to come up with more unique experiences later.