A Journey of 15 Years
Posted on September 8, 2014 by Taylor Rhea
In 1999, I found myself in a dire situation. Self-preservation caused me to file for divorce. “What am I going to do?” I asked myself in fear. I had been a stay-at-home mom. My last job was in Silicon Valley 20 years ago. My son was away at college and all of my family lived overseas. It was a scary and uncertain time in my life. Within walking distance of my house, I watched as Atria Grapevine was being built. At the time I had no clue about senior living. My last job involved microscopes, chemicals, clean suits and experimental lasers. A “We are hiring” banner went up. Weeks passed. I couldn’t get up my nerve to check it out, fully knowing I had to find work somewhere. The banner came down; I scolded myself for being so fearful, for dragging my feet. Finally, I got myself together and met the Executive Director and Community Business Director. I was hired two hours later and met the first residents of Atria Grapevine!
That was 15 years ago, and I’m still here today. The residents and staff are my family away from home. What a ride it has been! I enjoy and treasure our residents, their family members and the friendships I have formed over the years. Nothing makes me happier than when the front door opens and a familiar face shows up to say hi. “Just wanted to stop by and see if you are still working here!” Many times a letter or an email shows up to say hello. These things assure me that I’m doing something right. Not everything has come up rainbows and roses, to be truthful. There have been some “hiccups,” some short-lived and others persistent, but that is the general road in life. Being able to speak freely to Mike Gentry, Mike Mejia and Danny McCoy in the past has been a privilege. Thank you for always listening to me in moments of need or crisis. Thank you for believing in me. Rick Wigginton, you made my day way back when – the episode with the flowers will never be forgotten and my accent is here to stay! I have learned valuable lessons at Atria, lessons that truly have shaped me to be more understanding and caring, especially to show passion toward older adults. I have learned to “read” people, something that would have never happened by looking through a microscope. My father, bless his soul, always told me, “Work hard and speak the truth. Have you done that today?” I am the one that has to look into my own eyes at the end of the day and wonder. Yes, I will always try to do right as much as I am capable of doing – by all the nice residents that live at Atria and all that enter through the front door of our community.
– Rose Watson, Administrative Assistant, Atria Grapevine