How would you describe your journey to becoming the health leader you are today?
The journey to becoming a residential care assisted living administrator has been eye-opening and rewarding on so many levels. I started in this business after graduating from Clemson University as a caregiver and medication technician in a local assisted living facility. I grew as a person and professional, learning over time all the aspects of this field.
Describe the moment or time of life you decided to have a career in health.
As a young girl, I would go with my dad to visit my paternal grandmother, who was residing in a local continuing care residential community. What a joy it was to visit with her and spend time with the other residents there. As a child, I didn’t see age as a barrier to making friendships. I remember several times being allowed to bring my Rollerblades and skate around the parking lot with the residents cheering me on. What great memories.
What routines and habits help you prepare for, or recover from, a day’s challenges?
Spending time with my husband and our twin boys allows me to decompress and be more grounded after an especially stressful day. Creating with my hands, whether it be in the kitchen or gardening, doing hard physical labor or just spending time outdoors in general helps me relax and refocus to prepare for the week ahead.
Describe a moment you felt like giving up. Why didn’t you?
Deep in the throes of the pandemic, we all felt more stressed and sometimes overwhelmed. I gather strength from The Most High, Our Creator and feel called to be in the industry in which I am able to serve His people. I am humbled daily by the fortitude and perseverance this experience has afforded me.
How do you respond to the challenges of being a woman in the health care field?
I’ve never really looked at gender as being a stumbling block in my career. I believe that we all have strengths and abilities that allow us to serve our incredible geriatric population. I have some incredibly successful and strong women in my family and am so grateful for their encouragement and example they set for me and my sister.
Describe the person and provider you are striving to be.
I strive to be a leader to our team, showing by example what it means to have a servant’s heart. Families entrust us with their loved ones, who in turn become an extension of our family. We want them to have the peace of mind that their loved one is safe, happy and well cared for. This means being accessible, understanding, being a good listener and having high standards for care and customer service.
What advice do you wish you could give to your younger self?
Save more, spend less and don’t get so caught up in day-to day details that life moments pass you by. I like the saying, “Life is what happens when you’re making other plans.” Enjoy the moment, carpe diem or “seize the day” and make it a day you are proud of.
THE WILLOWS OF EASLEY