And a big excitable WELCOME to my freshly new & improved Dear Dollie blog.
Put the kettle on?
Join me on my thought-provoking journey as I attempt to make a difference in the lives of my fiercely independent (often gloriously grumpy), yet unashamedly determined elderly clients in their quest to stay healthy, happy and safe in the place they love most – their own home.
Share my heartfelt stories, candid observations and the odd silly poem … as I navigate my days working with older adults to respectfully provide the professional care and support they sometimes need in maintaining their everyday activities and routines.
From assistance with domestic chores, escorting them to the shops or to medical appointments – or simply getting them to a hairdresser on time to look spectacular for their 90th birthday bash!
Helping make a older person’s life a little more manageable is my utmost priority and it’s the tasks often taken for granted that can make a big difference to someone intent on achieving ultimate well-being and quality of life in their later years.
Assisting with meals, ensuring ease and safety at shower time; help with dressing or getting my client ‘glammed up’ for a lunch with old school friends. Providing respite to live-in family members who, as much as they love their dear wife, husband, mother, father (or ‘other’) – are grateful for an hour or two away from the care-giving responsibilities they carry.
Or, even just having a chat and a laugh over a cuppa, can do wonders to break up a pensioner’s socially-isolated day and extinguish nagging feelings of low self-worth or wavering confidence levels.
BUT it’s not all geriatric doom ‘n’ gloom!
Thanks to clever advances in medical science the ‘seasoned’ Beloveds in our lives are sporting far better health and wealth than ever before! Which means a whole new positive approach towards this next more-settled stage of their lives. Our parents and grandparents can now optimistically plan for a future where an active, vibrant lifestyle can be attained well past retirement.
And they’re dam sure being stuffed into a nursing home ain’t part of it!
Two sugars, thanks.
It’s time to rip apart those awful ageist stereotypes and out-dated interpretations of what it means when someone is considered ‘old’.
Let’s embrace this thrilling empowerment!
Altogether now… IN BIG LOUD CROAKY VOICES:
LIVING LONGER SHOULD BE CELEBRATED !!!
I adore writing about my greatest passion: Aged Care!
And, although caring for older people in their homes may not be everyone’s cup of tea… if you’re naturally kind, have outstanding communication skills and can rustle up light-hearted humour in all the right places – then there’s no doubt you, too, could discover that this often challenging, yet totally inspiring occupation can offer immense personal reward.
Not to mention, the insight I have gained wallowing in my own middle-aged-ness as I prepare for what lies beyond.
Oh, I’ve laughed at dicky jokes, sung silly songs and even danced a jig or two; I’ve listened to the saddest (and gladdest) of stories, walked down a myriad of memory lanes and dunked my gingernut into a thousand coffee cups with some of the most remarkable senior citizens I’ll ever have the pleasure to care for…
Of course there are the bad days when everything seems to go wrong. Mr Summer yells at you for making the budgie flap with fright and flick seed all over the lounge room because YOU knocked the birdstand with the vacuum cleaner hose.
Or, you’ve forgotten to lay out Mrs Winter’s preferred under-garment which means having to dash to the bedroom to find the white petticoat (not the brown one, you silly girl) . And even though she’s cross for having to sit in a cold draught (with the door that YOU left open) she still squeezes your hand when it’s time to leave and tells you with total sincerity, “I really look forward to seeing you next week, Dollie.”
… and would you like a dollop of cream on your spongecake?
Every care-worker’s day is shiny and new.
And every day is different.
Yet, I am amazed how just a meagre dose of lovingly administered care can leave a person smiling and just so glad of your visit. With faith in society restored, my clients can rest assured that regardless of their distinguished age, or despite any niggling infirmity… they are most definitely considered worthy of having dignity, choice and independence in their lives.
Which is exactly how it should be. Gee, maybe there’s hope for us all yet!
After all, isn’t there always time for another cuppa?