Catching Up and Preaching ?!!?
If you’ve followed my blogs in the past, I’m always apologizing in the March/April time frame and telling you that it’s my busiest time of year. It really is. (Crap, typing “blogs” made me realize I haven’t written on my Square One blog in forever. I’ll remedy that soon enough.)
This year, instead of chairing a charity Walk to Defeat ALS, I was attending the funeral for one of my longtime ALS support group attendees. His death came as a shock to me, and I’m tearing up as I type this now. He had ALS since the mid 2000s, much longer than the expected life span of the average ALS patient, and still walked and talked, and drove and did all the things that “healthy” people do.
“A hazard of the job, I suppose” I had whispered to one of the Chapter staff that attended the funeral and sat with me. “It doesn’t make it any easier” she whispered back.
It was good to hear that, because at times as a therapist, I forget that we too, are just people, and are allowed to have emotions.
Fast forward to Vietnam Veteran’s Day and Welcome Home day (March 29th and 30th). I was able to see Dad on the 30th and even treat him to lunch at Applebee’s (his choice). He was surprised to hear that there were two days dedicated to welcoming Vietnam Vets home. I was surprised to hear that Vet Center hadn’t mentioned it (or maybe they had and he missed it).
I addition to these life celebrations, my contract job, asked me to present to a church in Chapel Hill. The topic was Military and its Effects of Families and Children. I prepared a 15-20 minute presentation (speech really) and then a follow up power point for the potluck lunch that occurred after church. Imagine my surprise when my boss told me I wasn’t just presenting my speech, I was giving the sermon. I explained to her that I didn’t know how to give sermons, and she explained that at this particular church, they usually have a guest speaker to present on a topic and that is the sermon. I felt better, that’s what I had been planning to do- present a topic.
Imagine my surprise on Sunday morning when I arrived at the church, met the Pastor and he explained that I was part of the worship team and I would be sitting on the altar (not sure if they call it that) and I would be giving the sermon. The altar thing took me by surprise, but I went with it. Then, I noticed my name in the bulletin: “Preacher: Joanna Nunez”. That cracked me up. While, I’m certainly not anti-religious, if you had asked me if I was ever going to be preaching a sermon I would have definitely answered no.
So that has been my March and April so far. Trying to spread awareness of the horrors of ALS and the plight of the Military Child (remember that April is the Month of the Military Child!)