Jane Came to Class!
I taught the second monthly Eldergrow class at Jane’s community today. It was wonderfully scalable and residents were able to approach the activities at their own level, while I was able to change thing up a little to meet them where they are. About 1/2 the way through class, Jane joined us!!! This is the 4th time I’ve taught at her community. I am SO pleased she peeked out of her shell, liked what she saw, and then, basically, was the star of the show. The Activities Director gave her a playful tease calling her a ‘show off’ at one point. The others residents engage at a more general, social level. Jane remembers plant names, fully participated in the game (where others were happy to engage, but couldn’t remember what we were actually doing moment-to-moment), and offered up memories: Her mother was a botanist. While I don’t recall that her mom was a botanist, the point is she’s putting it out there, sharing, communicating, and socializing.
Since being ill with the flu this late winter/early spring, she basically holed up in her room, and was admitted to hospice. Bringing a wee garden into her life that has helped her overcome self-imposed (no fault of her own) isolation feels like the biggest gift I could have ever offered her at this point in her life, and at this juncture in our relationship. Knowing the impact of this program on this resident, my family member, helps me understand, even more, how impactful the program is for all residents, no matter their individual circumstances, life stories, or abilities.