Your Meals on Wheels experience sounded both intense and rewarding. Do you have any advice for those who are looking for volunteering opportunities?
I loved the years I spent delivering meals-on-wheels. It was challenging, delightful, and life changing. It helped me get out of the focus of me and my problems. It gave me the chance to learn life lessons from some crazy, funny, and very wise older folks.
The opportunities to serve are often just on the edge of one's peripheral vision. If you turn your head slightly, you'll find many ways to serve. It may be a family member who's struggling. It may be a one time adventure working with the food bank or homeless shelter. It may be a project organized by your church. It might be a neighbor who needs you to water their plants and bring in the mail while they're on vacation. It might be attending a fundraising concert for Mothers Without Borders. (see attached flyer). There are hundreds of ways to reach out to others.
Do you keep in touch with any of the folks you used to deliver lunch to?
I did keep in touch with several of my senior friends for a time after I reluctantly had to give up my route. I needed to take care of my mom who was ill, and my focus changed.
Has your experience changed the way you look at your own family?
The experience of serving these wonderful seniors absolutely changed the way I looked at my own family and my relationship with them. Some of my seniors had been estranged from their families, and some of the adult children of my seniors were selfish brats. It made me very grateful for the good ties I had with my family and recommitted to keeping our relationships positive. It also made me more diligent about watching out for the needs of my aging parent.
What's your favorite kind of chocolate?
Any kind of dark chocolate is my favorite. Right now I'm kind of into Junior Mints.
Thanks for the interview Gale. And best wishes for the success of The Route!