Chryslina “Lin” Schlichter uses more than her technical training to help her patients. She uses her talent as an artist to bring joy to their lives.
A Dialysis Technician II at the Washington University Dialysis Center at Forest Park, Lin is a skilled painter who is known to give away the fruit of her labor to patients, co-workers and others.
“While it is my joy to paint, the true blessing is to be able to share my paintings with family, friends, teammates, and patients,” says Lin.
As a child growing up in the Philippines, Lin could always be caught drawing, sketching and doodling. “At one time, I even wanted to be a professional artist,” she says, “but my mother advised me to take it up as hobby. If I was not successful at it, I would be a ‘hungry artist’.”
Therefore, in college Lin majored in English as a second language and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education. She taught in the Philippines and Laos prior to immigrating to the U.S. in 2006 when she married her husband, Frederick, a dialysis patient.
It was after she and her husband went through training for his home hemodialysis that Lin thought about a career in dialysis. After gaining confidence by helping with her husband’s dialysis, she started work at the DaVita Granite City Dialysis Facility in 2008. She transferred to the Forest Part Kidney Center in 2013.
While being a dialysis technician is Lin’s day job, painting is her quiet time. “I find it peaceful and relaxing. I have been painting for almost 5 years, when not working at the clinic. This country, which I appreciate so much, has given me an avenue and opportunity to further my desire to make art.”
Lin took classes in oil painting and just recently learned from a friend how to paint with watercolor. “Now I am using both mediums with my paintings. I have experimented with many different subjects and styles, but I mostly enjoy painting animals, portraits and flowers, preferring to stay with realism in my art.”
Lin has completed many commissioned works for special projects and portraits – often of pets, but also of people. “This helps to support my painting hobby,” she says, “since painting materials are expensive!”
A budding musician, Lin also plays the ukulele for patients, when requested (but is always mindful not to disturb sleeping patients). She received the ukulele as a surprise
birthday present from her sister. “I just learned to play it in August of this year, so I am still not that good at it, but nevertheless am loving it!” says Lin. “It is a powerful tool to calm oneself, but it also brings happiness and joy.” Lin remembers one patient getting teary-eyed when she sang “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.”
At times, her ukulele playing will inspire a sing-along. Other times, when she plays for a solitary patient, those nearby will ask for her to play for them also. “I guess they feel special and happy when they get serenaded by an amateur ukulele player!” says Lin.
Lin and her husband stay very active with work, home, family, church, traveling, and other interests and hobbies. Frederick received a kidney transplant in March 2015. “After 12 years we are still happy and very much in love with each other, and he supports me in all my endeavors,” says Lin. “He has been battling with medical problems since childhood, but you won’t hear him complaining about life.”
Lin is quick to attribute her gifts to someone other than herself. “I thank God for the talents He has given me, and I hope to continue to use them for good. I say the honor belongs to Him.”