“Enjoy what you do,” says Paul Duelin of Oakham. She has lived that motto all her life, doing two things she enjoys the most … caring for newborns, making blankets, filling those days with the best kind of work, love affairs.
She understood the joys of babies when she was a babysitter. Then, after marrying Ralph in 1955, he rejoiced in caring for his newborn, two sons, and a daughter, but realized that it was unwise to continue to have children after the child, so in 1968, when his youngest was 5 years old. , she decided to apply to the baby’s friends, the Worcester Adoption Agency, to be the caretaker of the babies waiting to be adopted. This started his childhood career. the covers came later.
It was an exciting day when the children’s friends sent them home with their first baby, the first of 27, with a little girl named Cindy. Pauline gave each baby a name, although it was just a temporary baby name that would change after adoption, but having a name made each one unique, it gave them an individuality while they were with him.
They placed a bass in their bedroom so they could watch the baby closely. Եւ Ralph, despite working hard as a carpenter during the day, often helped feed at 2 am. He cared for Cindy for six weeks, but was emotionally unprepared for the reform that his new job would require when he was in an adoptive family. Farewell Heartbreaking. He said. “It really gives you a number of numbers when you have to say goodbye to one of those little ones.” It was an emotional experience that he had to brag about knowing that his work with each child was only a temporary love affair. How wonderful it was for all those children և to feel love from the beginning.
Her second child made a big difference in their lives. He was a little boy with Down Syndrome. When the agency told Pauline about him, he was not sure he would be able to meet his needs. He has never had experience with a child with special needs, but after convincing his doctor, minister or friend about his abilities, he decided: “The baby needs a house, I can give him a house.” They called him Eddie. Little did he realize when he decided that his home would become his permanent home. Eddie had lived with them for two years when he and Ralph were told the sad news that he would never be adopted but would have to grow up in foster care. They could not allow this to happen to this lovely boy who had become a loving part of their family. What could they do? The answer reached them quickly. They must accept him.
Pauline and Ralph continued to have more children, some coming from other agencies in need of temporary placement; Eddie, along with his two brothers և sister, loved them and helped care for them. I asked Pauline if there was any compensation for this work. His answer shocked me. “Yes, four dollars a day is enough to cover the cost of formulas.” All I could think about was the hours of care, night feedings, business trips to the future parents’ meeting with the newborns, and the detailed notes Pauline prepared for the adoptive parents to make the transition easier for them. When I commented on how low the salary is for all the time և efforts, he said: “The payment of love is the highest salary one can receive.”
Realizing what a caring person Pauline և Ralph is, the agencies asked if they would be willing to help their needy mothers who needed a place to live during their pregnancy. The need touched their hearts և they opened their homes to shepherd these young girls. The youngest was 15 years old. Over the years, they have housed eight pregnant teenagers. Most of the girls stayed for two or three months, one was with them for seven months, while they were there, Pauline brought them to childbirth classes and supported them until the babies were born. Love was the only compensation for that spread. Ralph participated in and fully supported the expansion of the territories. His carpentry work covered the expenses.
Newborns, newborns, newborns. In addition to her three children, Eddie և and the newborns awaiting adoption, she lovingly cared for many others. She provided day care for children with special needs and became a licensed day care provider for newborns. In 2000, after 45 years of raising 61 children, he “came out”.
But did she stop caring for newborns? No. He started making blankets for them. Anyone who knows who has a baby gets a blanket. In addition, he trains them for infants with special needs, infants of the adoption agency, as well as anxious teenagers, veterans, those who hear about the needy, people working in group homes. (Eddie now lives in a group home. He says. “He does my hobby. It is a gift from God. I know the needs of my blankets, I sew for people, I pray for them. It gives me inner joy to be able to care for people. ”
Pauline is 85 years old and still enjoys what she does. Just as she felt connected to the babies she cared for, so did her blankets connect her to the people she creates for. Her blankets are large letters of love, a work of love.
Carol Garipi lives in Philipston.
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