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June 21, 2005

All kids need

Tennisshoe72x561 All kids need …somebody who believes in them. Nancy and Nina – thanks for all you do.

I am the Health Services Director at Indiana Developmental Training Center. We have 86 (soon to be 96) residential beds for mentally retarded and psychiatrically challenged youth from 6 to 21 years of age. We also have 2 group homes and a 64 bed residential facility. These kids have been through so much. Some have had more placements than they are years old. These kids need 24 hour parents and role models.

I do this work because I believe that by giving them some structure we might be able to turn their destructive behavior into constructive lives. We do have success stories, maybe not a large percentage, but enough to believe in what we do! I have worked in 2 places, and some of the kids I see as teens now are ones that were children in treatment in the other place I worked. They always get a kick out of mentioning the fact that I knew them when they were little. I get a warm feeling that they remember. I can't imagine not being involved somehow in the mental health care of our youth.

Nancy M. Ward RN, C

Psychiatry and Mental Health Site

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All kids need …a little hope and somebody who believes in them.

Having given birth to 8 children and having served as a doula, I went to nursing school anticipating becoming a labor and delivery nurse. After I completed my clinical rotation, I realized that a nurse cannot really get to know a patient well during the brief stays new moms have in the hospital. Instead, I worked in home health nursing for 6 years, serving in a variety of ways with a wide range of disease problems.

A friend told me that I really should work for the Arc of the Piedmont, which provides long term care for cognitively-impaired patients who have mental retardation or brain injury. A year after I starting working for the Arc, my 15-year old daughter was in a fatal car accident. She and the driver were declared dead at the scene, but she became combative when they were putting her in a body bag.

I was told that there was little hope for her rehabilitation with a 4-way coup-contrecoup such as hers. What I had learned from working at the Arc taught me there was hope. Music therapy animated her brain. My daughter, now 19, is studying to be a psychologist for brain-injured children. Only God knew that the Arc, not the labor and delivery suite, would prepare me for a life's tragedy.

Nina Beaman MS RNC CMA

Arc of the Piedmont

June 21, 2005 in What I Do | Permalink

Comments

Your story brought tears to my eyes. I wish your daughter all the best and you too.

Posted by: Susan | Feb 23, 2007 9:55:35 PM

What a story of inspiration! I too have found that where I have gone in Nursing has been for absolute reasons also! We should all look at the doors that open around us and every so often say, "Why not try something new?"

Posted by: Terri Miller RN, MSN, CDE | Aug 2, 2005 2:56:25 PM

Wow! Talk about God working in mysterious ways! Your daughter has a special mission here, it will be interesting to see how she fulfills it.
Home Health has been a blessing to me. You're right about getting to truly know your patient.

Posted by: Angie | Jul 14, 2005 11:08:57 PM

God bless you and your daughter! What a moving letter!

Thank you for what you do and your belief that there are some things possible which we cannot understand. We frequently must walk by faith.

Posted by: Deb Bonne' | Jul 13, 2005 12:35:11 PM

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