5Jun

What You Need To Be A Better Neonatal Therapist

By Sue Ludwig

Your life likely runs on a schedule. And if your kids’ lives are anything like most of the kids I know, their schedules may be busier than yours! Work/school – hurried snack – practice (sports, plays, music) – feed dog – homework – trips to buy $15 worth of stuff at Target for end of school year project – pick up from practice – oh, dinner?! – laundry (do I have clean scrubs for work?) – endless email – dishes – organize life for next morning – fall into bed at 11:00pm or later – begin again. 

Whew! 

No wonder you’re tired! 

And vacation – whether it’s staying home and not working or going away and separating yourself from all of the chaos, does something good for you. It reminds you what it’s like to live an unscheduled life. It allows you to breathe. To think. To spend time on foot or bike or boat. To laugh. To ponder. To forget where you left your phone.  

And what I know is that it’s hard to make this kind of time and space in our lives. And that we desperately need it. 

Sometimes you don’t plan a vacation, saying you don’t have the time, or that you’ll do it next year. Sometimes you pretend it needs to involve lots of money when you know that vacation is more of a decision than a destination. 

But you also understand you are a better person, therapist, and companion when you have unplugged, recharged, and had the space to wander, wonder, and laugh so hard you can’t breathe. The break makes it possible to recall what it’s like to want to get up and go into the NICU. You need to be refueled to continue to give to others. 

There are those of you who would say you’ll rest when you retire. But some people in my family, and likely in yours, died before they were able to reach or enjoy ‘retirement’ as we think of it.  

Retire a little along the way. 

Bring your favorite people and get lost in the land of unscheduled connection. 

There’s no magic place you’re working so hard to get to. 

Life is happening now. 

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