Thursday, 6 December 2012

1 June 2011

With me in the passenger seat, Morne steered the car towards Arcadia, the radio blurring in the background. We were feeling nervous and excited, unsure of what to expect from this meeting.

I don’t know about you, but I never had any dealings with a social worker before and the only thing I knew about “their kind” was what I saw in movies. They show-up unannounced and at the most inconvenient times. They are always the bearer of bad news.  Their unexpected visits make you nervous and stutter, obvious signs that you are trying to hide something. Their supernatural sights don’t miss a spectacle of dust making you look like a slob.
Nervous and Excitement was fighting the battling against Scared… Scared was winning!
We pulled up to ProCare’s offices and parked in the bay right in front of the pedestrian gate. Without a word we got out of the car and made our way to the intercom. The buzzer went and we pushed the gate open. At reception we got a warm and friendly welcome from Miemie. I good sign… Or so we hoped…  We got showed to the reception area and were offered a cup of tea. Jacaranda FM was playing in the background and the smell of filter coffee made these offices feel more like a home.
The office door on our left opened and out came a lady, dressed cosy and warm. She walked up to us, stuck out her hand and introduced herself, in Afrikaans: “Hi, ek is julle Maatskaplike Werkster. Kom saam met my.”
She walked us to her office and offered us a seat on her couch. She introduced herself as our Social Worker and asked us a couple of questions. You know… The basics: “Tell me a little about yourself?”
She then proceeded by telling us about the process, what we can expect from her and what she will need from us. She handed us a stack of papers and explained to us, in detail, what she would require from us and by what time. She then handed us a couple of those VERY important profiles so that we could get an idea of what ours needed to contain. She gave us the opportunity to ask her all the questions that we felt needed some answers.  And she answered every single one of them.
After saying our goodbyes, we left her office and exited the building. We left Anxious, Nervous and Scared behind. We were now bursting with excitement. I phoned Teri and gave her an update on our first meeting. “The verdict?” she asked… “It went very well!” I replied.
We walked out of ProCare with a completely different perception of a Social Worker. “Their kind” was friendly, warm, kind, caring, loving and nurturing. They were not what I thought they were.
Morne and I could not wait to get home and get stuck in the paperwork…

Jusqu'à la prochaine fois ...

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