girl in McDonald's uniform
Lisa: Her first job at McDonald’s

Sweet sister Lisa had terrific news this week!  Intellectually disabled Lisa is a marvel, despite her developmental delays and challenges.  (Read about her here to learn more.)

The pandemic thinned out vocational opportunities for lovelies like Lisa.  Despite the excellent work of her team of job coaches and social workers, it’s not easy to support disabled adults with a variety of intellectual and physical obstacles.

Lisa had a job, prior to the pandemic, doing piece work for a family-owned manufacturing company.  She loved it – they loved her – and although packing boxes of screws, weighing them and sorting them wasn’t an aspiration of hers, the point was productivity and providing Lisa with an opportunity to work in the community. (No job would ever compare with her FIRST job, however, when she worked at McDonald’s as a teenager. 😉 Free fries for the win, right?)

When the screw-sorting job ended, Lisa was bereft.  So sad and yet she understood it wasn’t her fault.  The company needed to trim their workforce and Lisa, along with two of her similarly disabled friends lost their jobs in the process. 

But this week?  Great news!  One of Lisa’s job coaches found a new gig for her – at a recycling company willing to do the good work of hiring Lisa, and her friend Albert.  This makes my heart sing.  Companies can easily dismiss hiring the disabled – view Lisa and Albert as ‘less than’ or unemployable.   

The company’s trusting heart and their willingness to listen to the job coaches who are angels AND champions made all of it come together.  Except for one, slightly funny Lisa-centric thing that everyone missed.  A smile is coming.  I promise.

Lisa LOVES all of the murder shows on TV. You know – CSI and NCIS whatever, whatever.  Law and Order this and that. I’ve never understood the appeal of “entertainment” that begins with dead bodies, and I’ve made my opinion clear.  Hubby, however?  He and Lisa share a bond here.  They DO on occasion, discuss other topics, but their conversations are typically peppered with ‘shop talk’ about the whodunits, etc. etc.  While they chat, I nod off or leave the room. 

What’s a common denominator in these shows – other than the aforementioned, requisite bloody corpse in every opening montage?  Yep.  Fingerprinting the ‘perp’, once captured.  In the old, old days, some of us geezers would throw the phrase, “Book ‘em, Danno” but for the youngsters reading, I’ll just apologize for the outdated reference.  Look it up, though, okay? 😉

As Lisa’s team prepped her for the transition to her new job – orientation, taking a tour, etc. – a passing reference was made to other milestones:  getting an official photo ID/badge and FINGERPRINTING

Alert! Alert! Alert!  Lisa’s savvy enough, sometimes, to catch herself before becoming volcanic.  This is a good thing – progress for Lisa who was plagued for decades by seizures triggered by emotional stress.   Afraid to clarify with her job coach, she said she needed to go to the bathroom – urgently – and called me in a full-on panic.  “I’ve done something wrong. I’m getting FINGERPRINTED.  I thought I had the job.  But maybe I messed up and I’m going to jail?”  Ah – hello, crime shows. 

For the love of Lisa.  Despite the kindness and care from her job coach and team, only someone with years of experience in Lisa-land would know what a passing reference to ‘fingerprinting’ might conjure up for her.  I’m glad I took Lisa’s call when it came.  Once I understood the problem, I simply said, “Oh – no.  This isn’t a CSI-Lisa thing.  It’s just part of hiring you.  You’re not in trouble.  Promise.”  Not missing a beat, Lisa said, “That’s good.  Thanks, Vicki.  I wondered if you’d bail me out.”

See me smiling? 😊 I love Lisa.

-Vicki ❤

18 thoughts on “CSI: Lisa

    1. Exactly right: adorable! It warmed my heart! A while back there was an episode of a show called Undercover Boss where one of the most successful branches turned out to employ quite a few disabled folks. One of the lessons the undercover boss had was to try to emulate that in other branches!

      As for dead bodies… I myself prefer mystery shows where the body is more talked-about and zero gore/blood is shown. Sort of like what Hitchcock said: “There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it”?

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Oh my goodness – what a wonderful and heart-warming story, Vicki! I feel better prepared for the day of opportunities whatever they hold after reading it.

    I love Lisa’s witty comeback – AND her trust in you. That is awesome. Congratulations on the new job, Lisa! They are lucky to have you.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Too funny! I had to get drug tested with my last role … and yes, I had the same thoughts: what had I done wrong? When could I expect the police at my door? I knew better, but I still had those crazy thoughts. Lisa and I must not be the only ones. When I joked about the test, the recruiter quickly tried to sooth my concerns by saying that it was all a formality! I guess they get that question a lot! Ha, ha.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I sensed that Lisa fits the description as a “sweetie” with a heart of gold. I remember my first black and white ID – it was grotesque and it was done in a portrait studio which didn’t care about the end result obviously. The light was from above and the photo left huge black shadows under everyone’s eyes. We all looked like heroin addicts or zombies. Years later the photos improved but that was the tax dept in the 80’s. Maybe there was a reason? LOL

    Liked by 1 person

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