We talk about gratitude a lot here at Vista del Monte, Front Porch’s retirement community in Santa Barbara. Not only because it has been proven to benefit one’s mental health, but also because we as staff get to experience it every day.
As Vista del Monte’s chaplain, I have the unique pleasure of getting to know the spiritual side of residents. Staff here work hard to be helpful. Beyond our prior education and training, we bring our whole selves to the job. We get to know and understand each resident. And within this microcosm of the world, we can make a significant difference in the quality of their lives. We can actually see and feel the difference we are making. And we often hear directly from residents and their families about the positive impact we have on the course of their lives.
The residents at Vista sometimes remind me of the elders within my own family. It feels good to acknowledge the residents, to help them, to be kind to them. When I arrive at work here, I sense deep within myself that it is a privilege to accompany these fascinating people during this phase of their lives. The residents never cease to amaze me with their diversity of talents, experiences, life philosophies, and senses of humor. I learn so much from them, whether I am the one in the front of the room teaching a class or sitting down to listen quietly to the stories of their lives.
I teach three meditation classes here each week. In the closing words I always give thanks for Vista del Monte, for the safety and comfort we enjoy here, the natural beauty surrounding us, and especially all the ways that people care for one another within this community.
That’s what makes this an exemplary community to not only live but to work. It’s the way residents and colleagues care for one another that makes me proud to work here and for Front Porch. We strive to create a culture of kindness.
What are you grateful for? What unique talent, experience, philosophy, or gift might you bring to our community? I invite you to join us!
Rev. Laura L. Mancuso, MS, CRC
Spritual Life Program Leader
Vista del Monte Retirement Community