I saw laughter. I saw whirlwinds of activity. I saw smiles and happy tears. I saw hugs and milling crowds and eating--lots of eating. I saw all these at work today.
But I didn't see helplessness.
"An Elder-centred community creates opportunity to give as well as receive care. This is the antidote to helplessness." Eden Alternative Principle 4
Today, we had a baby shower for two of our care partners who are expecting new arrivals in August. New babies aren't common among our staff, so imagine out excitement when we discovered these two were due within three days of each other. Two neighbourhoods came together to host the shower and everyone else joined in the fun. It was family. Here are some of the scenes in the room.
- A care partner sent her regrets, because she was spending the day with her mother, who was having a birthday. She was encouraged to bring her. She arrived with her mother and three other ladies she had taken to lunch to celebrate the birthday. All were welcomed.
- A resident who had a special connection to one of the care partners, had gifts for both. Other residents made homemade wrapping paper to wrap her gifts in.
- Several residents came just to enjoy the party and the food. And that was fine.
- Family of residents joined the fun, and brought gifts for their family members to give.
Can you see it? A large room, with food-laden tables covered in pink tablecloths. Care partners, family members, residents in wheelchairs and residents with walkers, talking and laughing and having fun. Everyone oo-ing and ah-ing over tiny shoes and fluffy dresses.
Those who give care, receiving care. Those who receive care, giving it.
A beautiful day in the neighbourhood.
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