As an assignment I had to write a reflective essay of time I spent at an adult day care center. I wanted to share with an exert from my paper.
"As I sat surrounded by the mentally challenged adults I started watching each one, trying to diagnose each. She has Down syndrome, he must have some type of autism, she seems to have a mild retardation and then a small-framed girl caught my eye. She sat quietly with a plastic something in her hand. She did not speak nor did she make eye contact. She sucked her thumb. The fact that she sucks her thumb may mean nothing to someone else, but when I saw her sucking her thumb I could feel the tears building up in my eyes. My son, Benjamin sucks his thumb. This is not just a mentally handicapped girl, this is someone else’s baby; this is someone else’s Benjamin.
The rest of the day is somewhat of a blur. I spent time speaking with the older adults who needed some assistance and also spent time with the elderly with advanced Alzheimer’s. Nothing compared to the moment I had when I looked at the girl who was sucking her thumb. I will not be nursing clients; I will be caring for someone else’s Benjamin."
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