I’d divide the Month of April into three parts. Not by the beginning, middle or the end of the month, but by the power of connections I made during the month.
For the entire month of course I was connected through our deep love to my Mom. Once someone goes into Hospice, there’s no set timeframe for the end of life, so you spend as much time with your loved one as possible and I only missed seeing Mom three days this month. Some days Mom would chat a lot and be very engaged, and other days she was somewhat alert but didn’t say a word. Regardless, I made every possible moment with her filled with as much joy as possible. She’s given pain meds whenever she gives any indication that she’s in pain, but most of the time we laugh a lot as Mom reads her magazines.
I made connections in different areas with people I was already very connected with. I’ve given many presentations to support groups and at conferences for Johns Hopkins Medicine and though my contacts there who have become friends over the years had heard about my LEGO work we never discussed using LEGO bricks in any of the work I’ve done for them. So I met with my three contacts in mid-April and gave them a presentation on LEGO Serious Play. Not only were they very impressed with my presentation, they’ve already booked several sessions for their caregivers and professional staffs. Of course I’m wishing I’d met with them well before now, but so grateful that a new and powerful connection is now underway. That new connection inspired me to continue to share LEGO Serious Play with as many people as possible because I strongly believe in it’s restorative power for professional and family caregivers.
I also made several connections out of sheer necessity. There was a recall on my RV Joy and while she was in the shop getting that work done, I also authorized them to get her ready for this year’s camping season. They fixed quite a few things and kept me apprised every step of the way, even sending me pictures of issues they found. It was some of the best customer service I have ever received and though the repairs were costly at $2,700 I know I will be very safe on the road. I also ran over a nail in my car and needed two new tires, but connected with our local Mr. Tire which was always Tim’s favorite place and they took great care of me as always. Then when I was on my way to see Mom this week, my car battery had died, so my original battery had to be replaced by my Ford dealer where they also take very good care of me. At almost $4,000 it was a very expensive month, but the investments are well worth it given I’m usually always on the road alone.
My other re-connection this month was with my RVing Women sisters as we gathered for our first camping rally of the season. Though we were still keeping our safe distances and wearing masks it was fantastic to be with them again. We also had a special treat of being interviewed by the French press who wanted to talk to RVW Chapter members about being out on the road seeing the country given that Nomadland was up for (and won) the Oscar for Best Picture. It was fun being in the article and then seeing the article first in French until we received the English version.
The most amazing! connections I made came at the end of the month. I had connected with a woman named Melissa more than a year ago who is very well known and respected in the senior living / home health care space who had participated in my Pilot LEGO Serious Play virtual class in January. She had also attended a virtual presentation of mine, BUT we’d never met in person. We not only met for the first time this week, we saw each other three days in a row at events she invited me to! Melissa graciously connected me to some amazing folks in the memory care, assisted living and health care spaces who I will likely be working with in the future for presentations and LEGO fun! It felt strange at first, but was so incredible to network again (even with our masks) after 14 months of being homebound and to meet some amazing young people doing incredible work with seniors! I was absolutely blown away yesterday to visit Brandywine Living at Potomac, an incredibly gorgeous brand new Assisted Living and Memory Care facility where the first few residents have just moved in. I had a great chat about LEGO Serious Play with Brandywine’s activity director.
Today was definitely the best day of the month and the best way to end the month!! With several upcoming LEGO Serious Play sessions scheduled for June I ordered a case (the only way to buy them) of LEGO Serious Play materials. They are individual sealed bags of LEGO bricks to be used with a facilitator. LEGO shipped the materials on April 21st and gave me a tracking number. I tried pulling up the tracking info for the next couple of days but it wasn’t available. I got home from camping on the morning of the 24th and tried the tracking number again. To my surprise it said the package had been delivered on the afternoon of 23rd. There was no package and no one in my neighborhood had seen the box and video cameras didn’t detect a FedEx truck anywhere on our block before, during or after the time the box was supposedly delivered. Very concerned about my $565 worth of materials I filed a claim with FedEx and as of this moment I’ve not heard a word from their investigators. Hoping that LEGO might have some advice for me, I reached out to them on Wednesday night. Late last night they answered my email and announced that they would re-send my entire order at no charge to me. It was the first message I saw this morning and I thought it was a joke, but this afternoon I was notified that new box was shipped and then I jumped for JOY!! I have been a loyal buyer of LEGO products for most of my life and am a VIP customer, YET I didn’t expect them to replace my order, I was simply hoping they’d push FedEx to look for or replace the order since it got all the way to my Zip Code, just not to my house. It’s amazing to me that one of the most important connections throughout my life that I love so much showed me today that they love me back! I give them the Customer Service of the Year Award! Connections really are everything!