Philly is a great town with a lot of things to do and people to meet. As with meeting strangers, the typical no-fail question: “So, what do you do?” usually comes along after an at least an hour and not immediately, like my native Dallas. I usually pause at this question because I play it out in my head of how the next few minutes will go…example.
“So, what do you do?”
“I’m a recreation therapist.”
“You’ve never heard of it, have you? I know, most people haven’t. I use recreation as a rehab tool for guys with spinal cord injuries. I teach them how to get back on the computer, play games or anything that will get them to use their hands or arms and even work on their balance, get them back into sports and into the community…..”
“OH! Is that like occupational therapy?”
And the rest of the conversation is validating at times it is, and who specializes in what and who can do what. I get excited talking about it and boasting who I work with because it’s such a unique experience, and I know it. After awhile, I notice people’s eyes are glossing over and drop the explanation.
Let this be a good start to explaining what it is.