A reminder of what’s important and what’s not?

Writing this article makes me sound like I am one of those people who read celebrity magazine rags. Honest, I don’t, but sometimes the internet headlines are just too good to pass up.

A Big Week for Gwyneth

It has been a big week for Gywneth.  First, she announced that she and her husband, Chris Martin of Cold Play,  are divorcing in what she calls a “Conscious Uncoupling.”, something that could only come out of a Hollywood wacko. That story was followed quickly by a second story in which she says that moms working 9-5 jobs have it a lot easier than she does.  Here is what she had to say:

“I think it’s different when you have an office job, because it’s routine and, you know, you can do all the stuff in the morning and then you come home in the evening. When you’re shooting a movie, they’re like, ‘We need you to go to Wisconsin for two weeks,’ and then you work 14 hours a day and that part of it is very difficult. I think to have a regular job and be a mom is not as , of course there are challenges, but it’s not like being on set.” – From eonline.com

Harder Than Being a Care Professional

This got me to thinking that if she thinks a 9-5 office job is a lot easier then she must think that being a senior living care professional must be even easier.  After all, a lot of these individuals work evening and night shifts, allowing them to have all day to take care of kids and sit around the pool drinking Mia Tias. Even more importantly these care professionals aren’t forced to use nannies while they go to work or to Hollywood extravaganzas.  Instead they have the privilege of relying on local day care centers that take a big chunk of their paycheck, neighbors, family members, friends and spouses to care for their children.

The Real World

While most people in this country are not as ditzy or clueless as Paltrow, I am not sure they have a real appreciation for what care givers do for the vulnerable elderly of this country. In fact I am not sure that even those of us who work in the industry always pay enough attention to these dedicated individuals who not only work hard but become fast friends with the residents they care for. These individuals will never make millions of dollars for a few weeks of work on a single movie. In fact, most will never come close to making a million dollars in their entire lifetime.

The Gwyneth Paltrow Care Giver Award

Only a little tongue in cheek I propose that ALFA, AHCA and LeadingAge each establish a Gwyneth Paltrow Care Professional Award to celebrate these mostly unsung heroes who actually make this world a better place to live. These are individuals who  befriend and love our residents, who bring comfort to residents and families. They are the team members who make department heads, executive directors, regional and corporate leaders look good. Their stories are the ones we should be telling. Frankly, to me, these kinds of statements show a level of hubris and insensitivity I find disgusting,  and yet I appreciate them because the contrast reminds me who the real heroes are.

Steve Moran

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