It’s a high touch position

Butterbean-Band

The laundry door cracked open.

I could see her inside tenderly folding each piece of clothing more gingerly than I fold my own family’s clothes. When she had put all in the basket, she tiptoed out of the room, not disturbing the concert in progress in the activity room.

It’s a high touch position.
No need to apply if you’re afraid to get close.

I was only there as a spectator. My daughter was singing with her grandfather’s Butterbean Band. They make the nursing home rounds. This particular facility housed a family friend so I had double reasons to attend the day’s performance.

I can’t help but watch the workers when I visit homes like this for the elderly.

It may be the patients and family who pay the money, but it’s the everyday-worker who keeps things humming. 

  • It’s the young nurse who makes rounds with her little cups of pills specific to each resident.
  • It’s the aide who pushes the elderly gentleman’s wheelchair into line so he can listen to the band with the gathering crowd.
  • It’s the activity director who breezes in and out to joke with the residents, distributing hugs, and makes sure everyone is having a good time.

And it’s the girl who goes into each room, empties individual hampers, washes and dries and separates each article of clothing, then tiptoes back into rooms to return them to drawers and closets where they belong.

You can’t hold down these jobs without using your hands—to move, to work, to love. Without the human touch, it’d be an empty place.

To touch hearts, use your hands.

* * *

[Also remembering the workers whose hands took such sweet care of my own mama her last few months with Alzheimer’s. Angels, each one.]

How can you use your hands today to touch a heart?

25 thoughts on “It’s a high touch position

  1. blankTracy

    Hi Lisa, such a powerful post. usually those that are the simplest are the most powerful. It is in the touching, doing and being available that we can touch the heart of another. Thank you for that reminder today
    God bless
    Tracy

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      Yes, those simple everyday things often hold more depth than we imagine when we take the time to scratch the surface. But taking the time–that’s important; I don’t always want to slow down, but I miss so much when I speed by.

  2. blankHolli

    Oh, this is beautiful. And I read this as I’m getting my little ones ready for our monthly moms group visit to the nursing home. Thank you for this beautiful refection.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      How wonderful that you take your little ones regularly to the nursing home! It’s such an awesome gift not only to the residents, but to your own children as well, even though they are probably pretty oblivious to much of it right now. It will stay with them though and bless them for years to come.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      Good for you, Rick. I’m sure you’ve spread tons of joy with music through the years you’ve been making it. I’ve definitely been blessed by those who share those gifts with me. Keep it up!

  3. blankfloyd

    It really is all about action. Talking about doing begins to sound like Charlie Brown’s teacher. Love is indeed action and it speaks volumes. I appreciate the fact that you look for details, Lisa. The heart of our Father and one of a writer…

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      I’m hearing Charlie Brown’s teacher in my ear now. 🙂 You’re right; words without action don’t say much to us. For somebody who likes words as much as I do, sometimes that fact hurts. ha. But I sure do like when people show me love versus only saying it!

  4. blankBetty Draper

    Lisa this a sweet post. My mother is in a nursing home in Illinois and I so appreciate all those who take care of her. I have also done my share of singing in nursing home, love to see those old eyes tear up as we sing about their Savior. Love this post.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      I know how you feel, Betty. When my mom was in assisted living, I developed a deeper level of respect for those who labor in love to care for those who can’t take care of themselves.

      And those old hymns–don’t they love singing those still? 🙂 It makes me smile to think how so many remember the words to the songs when they can’t remember a lot of other things.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      I know you are one of those behind-the-scenes people who do so much for so many to make Auburn Highlands such a fantastic place. Thanks for using your hands to serve! Jenna is excited about returning soon. I will miss her here, but I’m glad she’s happy to go back. Makes it easier on me to let her go.

  5. blankHelen Tisdale

    Lisa, now this post I must respond to, as (I am blessed) to be one of those in the “high touch position!” A position I would not trade for anything! So loved the comments of those before me in their journeys! As a single mother of a 40yr. old special needs son, who God has blessed me to care for at home all these years; I consider it a position I have been placed in by my Loving Father. So many days I think, “who will kiss him, who will just stroke him with love as I pass him by? Who will talk to him with endearing words & names, and pray for him & with him?” His Neurologist told me that he sincerely felt that my son would not have lived this long if it weren’t for the love he has experienced from his family. It is the human touch Lisa! God has just been so faithful to give the stamina, determination, developed skills through trial & error, and a love that merely takes my breath away at the thought of him! It is just a worthy field to be working in! Every night I can go to bed with knowing I have done my best, given my best. and for that I am the blessed one!

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      I’m so glad you commented here, Helen! You are one of my heroes. I wish more people knew of your story because it is a special one. You’ve endured so much yet you keep going and going. You inspire me to remember that the Lord will always give us what we need to do what he wants us to do. Thank you for being such a faithful example of a mother’s love. You’re awesome and I love you!

  6. blankBarbara H.

    We’ve experienced both good and bad nursing home/assisted living workers, and I am afraid I’ve spent too much time and energy thinking about the not-so-good ones, but there are true treasures in each and every place as well, who cheerfully do their work, engage the residents, and spread joy in quiet, behind-the-scenes ways.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      I’d be scared to weigh out the good versus bad stories–I know there’s tons of both and I’m not sure which would win out. 🙁

      We were blessed to have far more good than bad with my mom, but I know every situation is different. I know you had some less than desirable situations with your m-i-l but I’ll be praying that now YOUR hands will bring her much joy and comfort in her last bit of time on earth. I admire you very much for what you and Jim are doing. So much love!

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