by Jan Gunter
I don’t much like routines. I’ve always just found them, well, boring. I mean, really! Who wants to do the same thing at the same time every day?
When my optometrist told me in 1996 that in order to continue wearing contacts I would need to re-wet my eyes three times a day, I said, “The only thing I do three times a day is eat.” I’ve been wearing glasses ever since.
So yes, I always eat regularly. And sometimes I exercise regularly, and that’s where Collin, my wellness coach comes in. He calls me regularly, and he’s been helping me focus on eating a little less and exercising a little more. The thing about Collin is that he’s a really nice guy. I like hearing his voice on the phone, and having his support is a benefit of my insurance coverage. This is definitely a win-win!
I talk to Collin about my exercise routine which suffered terribly last year after the flood at our house. I’m biking and doing yoga at least four times a week, and it makes me feel better. I know it is not breaking news that exercise makes you feel better, and it’s not like this is the first time I’ve had an exercise routine in my life, but quite frankly this year I really did need a little help. Collin has been very helpful. As have Missy and Jane, because when I don’t get my four days a week in, I owe them each one dollar!
When families are staying with us at the Ronald McDonald House or Family Rooms, their routines have been disrupted, and there’s not much they can do about it. Their schedules are dictated by hospital routines, doctor’s rounds and the needs of their sick or injured children.
That’s where the House and Family Rooms come in. When parents walk in our doors, they know they can count on certain things. Meals at the House are cooked and served by volunteers every day at lunch and dinner. Even if a family can’t be here at that time, they can show up later to eat leftovers out of the refrigerator. Then, when they walk into their private room at the House, they know a comfortable bed is waiting for them, whether it’s a normal bedtime or not. Snacks and a listening ear are always available at the Family Rooms.
This is amazingly comforting for parents, grandparents, siblings and other family members. The House and Family Rooms can’t fix everything, but they can provide a space that feels like home, and families can relax knowing there are certain things they can count on. Just as Collin supports me in my wellness goals, our families know they are supported by a caring staff, kind volunteers, and a host of supporters who make all of this possible.