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February 2021 Aide of the Month – Edith Smith

Edith Smith CCOR 2021 February Aide of the Month

Edith Smith, our February Aide of the Month, knows where to find true joy. Her philosophy is simple: Give joy to others and it will come back to you. “I treat people the way I want to be treated, because, you know, this world is 360—what goes around comes around. You get what you give.”

Remarkably, she began giving at an early age. When Edith was 11, her grandmother Nana Scott was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. As her condition worsened, Edith lovingly took on the role of caregiver when her father was at work. Edith not only helped Nana with her personal care but skillfully tended to her mental state as well. When Nana was moved into a nursing home, Edith continued looking after her grandmother before and after school, every day. “That just did something for me,” she explains. “From there, nursing was just embedded in me.”

These experiences of caring inspired her to begin work at a nursing home, and in 2001, she became a Certified Nursing Assistant. In 2013, a recommendation from a patient’s family member led Edith to leave nursing home work and take a job at CCOR. Here she discovered the joy of the more personalized approach of in-home care. “I’m there if they call me at any time to do anything, not just for my clients, but for any clients that belong to CCOR, because I am a face of the company.” Edith knows that caregiving is more than simply completing the assigned tasks. “You want to make the person feel comfortable,” she explains, “because sometimes we’re putting them in a compromising position. How would you feel if you had to take your clothes off in front of somebody you didn’t even know? You want to approach them carefully, and you want to be kind.”

Though difficult situations may come up, Edith’s joy in caregiving is never deterred. She knows that no matter what the client may be experiencing, she has the power and the responsibility to ease their pain. “And you never know, just saying hello with a smile on your face…it may brighten a person’s whole day. You don’t know what they went through before you got there.”

What keeps Edith smiling? The surprising answer is that she herself has known the pain of unhappiness. “I know what it feels like when you need just one good word from someone. I know what it feels like to be low. So, I don’t ever want to see anyone be put in that situation.”

What goes around has come around for Edith, and her life is full of joy. She is the proud mother of three sons, Dwayne, Jamody, and Miguel and recently got married to her loving husband, Odis. Additionally, Edith just launched her own cosmetics line. She is deeply proud of all of her accomplishments, but she always knows where true joy is to be found: “I think the thing that gives me the most joy,” she says, “is, really, caring for people.”

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