Being born and raised in the city I get asked all the time…you live where??! You moved where?!
Trust me, I get it. My office is in Ashern which is 160 km north of my hometown Winnipeg. If you are born and raised as urban dweller or city slicker you most likely experiencing something we call ‘perimeter-itis’…which nicely describes someone who can’t imagine travelling outside of city limits. The perception I often get when I tell someone where I work is the equivalent of me living in Timbuktu.
I started working in Ashern quite randomly, but jumped on board at the opportunity to potentially own my own clinic. The first thing that I can remember when meeting my new rural clientele was the kindness, patience, and understanding of practically every single person I met.
The kindness warmed my heart and made me think ‘man, this is how it is supposed to be!’ That, combined with what I affectionately call the ‘slow or stop’ pace of rural towns really made me take a step back and think about my insane, all pistons full throttle way of life. My heart was always racing 100 miles an hour and I just did NOT have the time to wait that extra two minutes in line without looking at my watch 1000 times and my toes tapping at about the same rate. I have since learned to smell the coffee and to not get so wrapped up in the little, insignificant things.
The last, and most profound, community aspect I discovered was gratitude. To this day (and almost everyday!) we receive some comment about how grateful a patient, or someone they know is, for us being there to serve their community and to provide physiotherapy services.
I mean, how couldn’t you be drawn to a place like that and want to contribute more to those kinds of folks! I get to experience this every single day at work and I could not be more grateful for it all!