As a Speech Therapist, I’ve worked with both ends of the age spectrum. Out of school I worked at skilled nursing facilities (also known as nursing homes, but of course now that’s not as PC) because I thought I’d never want to work with kids and then have to return home to my own kids. (This was, of course, way before infertility.) After a couple of years though, I realized that the population I really wanted to work with was kids. After some ridiculous drama at my old job, I finally made the switch.
The funny thing about it is there can be many similarities between the much older and the very young. That old adage “once a man, twice a boy” isn’t far from the truth. Both ages tend to say what’s on their mind (the older particularly if dementia is involved), which can sometimes make things hilarious. This became an added bonus.
Once I was working with a man with dementia and I brought him his lunch. While setting the tray down I accidentally knocked over his glass of iced tea which naturally made a huge mess everywhere. I’m being extremely apologetic, saying I didn’t spill it on purpose. The man looks me dead in the eye and says “yes you did”.
In that same building I worked with a woman (also with dementia) and was co treating with the Occupational Therapist during bathing and dressing time. Attempting to work on some sequencing skills, I asked her, when she began to wash herself, what body part did she start with. With a voice full of annoyance she replies:
Trying REALLY hard not to crack up laughing, I say “ok, so then what?”
(I was done then – we were all laughing)
For some reason this past week with the kids has been particularly amusing. In the past I’ve posted about a kid having an issue saying the word “clock”. The kid I was working with this week has an issue with his /k/ sound. While practicing, I ask him:
Me: What does a duck say?
Coworker: must be an inner city duck.
We now have sounds for a few other “inner city animals”, however I’ll refrain from posting them here because they involve cuss words. But if you’re interested, let me know 🙂
Later that day I’m working with a kid on “wh” questions. He tends to get them confused, often answering a “where” question with a “what” answer and so on. That day we were working on “who”.
Me: Who takes care of you when you’re sick?
The next day a kid asks to play with a marble maze toy I have, but unfortunately I have lost all of the marbles that come with it. I’m explaining this to him and saying I keep forgetting to go buy more, and he says to me “well maybe you should write yourself a note”.
I go to share this with my “office mate” (we have a shared door) and after laughing I look at her kid and mention how cute he is. To which he replies “yeah”.
It’ll never get old.