This week we continue our “Chapter & Verse” series where we allow you to get to know the people who make up the ALS Association St. Louis Regional Chapter a little bit better. Today we hear from Care Service Coordinator Lori Dobbs, who has been with our chapter for 10 years.
Tell us about your role with the ALS Association St. Louis Regional Chapter. How would you describe it to a 4th grader?
My title is Care Service Coordinator. My job is to go into the homes of people affected with a disease called ALS, also known to some as Lou Gehrig’s disease. My job is to educate families about the disease and help them with any needs they may have while living with this disease.
What would people never guess you do in your role?
That I have to have a wide variety of knowledge on various pieces of equipment that a patient may encounter the need for and be able to explain how they work.
What have you gained from working here?
Compassion for others, patience and how important it is to be a good listener and really pay attention to someone when they are opening up their feelings to you.
What three traits define you?
Compassionate, kindness and caring.
What is something you learned in the last week?
This past week in church we started a new series called “Rule of Life.” If you are wanting to make changes in your life don’t set yourself up with large goals; starting with one small thing at a time makes a big difference and ensures longer commitment to your goal.
Have you ever had something happen to you that you thought was bad but it turned out to be for the best?
Yes—multiple times. I’m a firm believer in “Everything happens for a reason.”
Ten years ago, who did you think you would be now?
I started here 10 years ago and the day I started I knew I wanted this to be my last job.
What would you most like to tell yourself at age 13?
Enjoy life, listen to your teachers when they are trying to give you advice and always respect and love your parents and elders.
If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?
How to be a master chef and cook delicious meals for my family.
If you could meet anyone in the world dead or alive who would it be and why?
My great grandparents. I would love to meet them to see if there is any similarities in looks, actions, personality or traits that I inherited from them and I would love to know how the world was for them growing up and compare it to today.
You’re happiest when?
I have all my kids and husband together at the same time getting to share quality family time.
What is your greatest fear?
Not being able to help someone or do something to brighten their lives just a little more.
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
A good morning kiss from my husband followed by my dog jumping on my bed to ensure I am awake and ready to give her attention.
Do you have a favorite quote, movie line or song lyric, and what is it?
This is a quote from Leo Buscaglia that Melissa, our Associate Director of Care Services, told us about and I absolutely love it: “Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or that smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
I have two song lyrics that I love, one is from Ed Sheeran’s “Supermarket Flowers”: “A heart that’s been broke is a heart that’s been loved”, “I know a life with love is a life that’s been lived”, the next is Avett Brothers: “Always remember there was nothing worth sharing like the love that let us share our name.”
What is your guilty pleasure?
Dark Chocolate—well anything chocolate!
Thank you Lori for sharing a little bit of your story with us, and thank you for the work you have done for 10 years for people with ALS and their families.