May 6 - 12 is Nursing Week and today we are excited to introduce you to Darby.

Darby is a Continuing Care Assistant (CCA) who works at a rural long-term care facility. It has bee more than 5 years since she obtained her CCA certificate and began her career.

When choosing a career, Darby felt a little bit lost until a family friend suggested that she consider healthcare. It was completely unfamiliar, but she fell in love with the work from the very first day. She tells us "It is hard not to fall in love with what you do when you get to care for such amazing and loving individuals."

A typical day for Darby essentially is about caring for the residents, who can feel like an extension of family. She helps to feed them and to dress them when they are no longer able to do those things independently. On their worst days, Darby holds their hand and helps to calm them. On their best days, she is able to share smiles and laughter with them.

We asked Darby about the part of her job that she likes best. She told us that she loves all aspects of her job but feels that it is a misunderstood job. It is one of the most rewarding careers that she can imagine, caring for the people who in so many ways helped to shape the world we live in today.

Darby also told us about a memorable moment with a resident. She was chatting with some coworkers about her upcoming wedding and one of the residents walked by and overheard the conversation. He said to Darby ""Oh, you're getting married, are you?" and Darby replied that she sure was! The resident gave her a cheeky little smile and said, "That poor, poor man." This is just one example of the heartwarming interactions that Darby enjoys with the residents at her facility.

Working through the pandemic has been a challenge. It changed the way that Darby and her coworkers care for the residents, and how people interact with one another. Staffing levels have dropped and workload has increased. The mental and emotional strain has been difficult, but Darby continues to show up day after day, with a big heart and a willingness to care.

To Darby, and all members of the Family of Nursing, thank you for all that you do.

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