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Under the Surface | Deloris’ Story

Published June 19, 2024

With headphones over her ears and her attention on the task in front of her, Deloris is unlikely to acknowledge the casual visitor to Room C of Merrick’s Enhanced Services (ES) area. After all, she has a large pile of Medtox lead test kits in front of her to assemble and has little time for frivolous conversations while she’s on the clock. So, she quietly continues working with only the music of Usher in her ear for company, seemingly unconcerned with the activities of others.

Dede knows better. As she enters the room, Deloris glimpses Dede out of the corner of her eye, and her face immediately breaks into a radiant smile. “Did you get a haircut, Dede?” Deloris asks. “It looks nice.”

“Yes, I did get a new haircut. I’m glad you like it.” Dede replies. Having worked for Merrick for over 35 years, Dede has known Deloris since she first enrolled at Merrick in 2006. She knows that behind Deloris’ stoic demeanor is an incredibly observant, intuitive, kindhearted person. Hence, Dede was not surprised that Deloris noticed her new haircut. In fact, she expected it. However, Deloris’ intuitive nature was not always so apparent.

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