Rebecca Shealy | Behind the Mask Employee Spotlight
Behind the Mask with Rebecca Shealy
Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant
Meet today’s Behind the Mask employee, Rebecca Shealy.
As a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA), Rebecca helps children and adults live their best lives with their highest level of independence possible. She has worked for Newberry County Memorial Hospital for 4 years.
Her favorite thing about her job is getting to know each person she works with and seeing them progress towards their goal—especially when she gets to see children she has been working with for a long time accomplish a skill for the first time.
“The look on their faces, the joy on their parents’ faces—it makes it so worth it!”
What is something about your job that people may not know?
“Many people, in general, do not know what occupational therapy is. Occupational therapy is not a therapy to help someone get a job. The word “occupation” has a variety of definitions. In this sense, an occupation is any activity that has meaning for the individual person. This could be activities of daily living (dressing, bathing, eating), instrumental activities of daily living (grocery shopping, laundry, caring for family members or children), education (can the student meet the demands of school activities?, handwriting, organization/executive function skills), leisure activities, social participation, and play. Occupational therapy works to address barriers or limitations to these areas of life and increase an individual’s participation in each area so that they can live their life to the fullest.”
What do you like to do when you aren’t working?
“Currently, when I am not working at the hospital, I am doing school work. I am currently in graduate school for Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy. Other than that, I love to do crafts. I make wreaths and silk flower arrangements, paint, sew, and am learning to crochet. Anything that is ‘crafty’ or creative, I like to try it. I also like to spend time with my family, help out on the family farm, and work in the gardens or flower beds.”
What’s your favorite place in the world?
“My favorite place in the world is home, always has been. But I love to be outdoors. I’ve never been fond of being cooped up in the house for long periods of time.”
How has your job changed during the pandemic?
“Since the COVID-19 pandemic started, many things have changed for everyone. At work, I shifted from working in the hospital and the pediatric clinic to working mostly in pediatrics. I’ve had a lot of kids that were scared when it first started, asking if they would get to come back the next week and if they would get to see their teachers at school again. Everything was changing so fast and they just didn’t know what to expect. It was a scary time for everyone with many unknowns.”
Please join us in thanking Rebecca for the work she does!