Hello readers! Hope everyone is warm and happy as we started to celebrate our holiday season. Christmas is just around the corner so let’s make sure we take the time and enjoy our holiday season and most of all be aware that Christ is the reason for this whole season. God is so good to us, even when we don’t realize it. Let us all keep the love of God close at hand each day and always remember how merciful our Lord is. As much as God forgives us, we can forgive one another for the greater good and our personal salvation.
The best of times, the worst of times might as well describe the vacation experience of loved ones of people with dementia. With a little thought, planning, and flexibility, the balance can be shifted from worst to best. Incorporate the following suggestions when planning your vacation events to create memories that don’t tear laughter and help you find joy in moments. Here are some tips for everyone to have peace for the holidays:
PRIORITY: Decide which family traditions are most important and which parts of them are truly meaningful. While the person with dementia may not be able to tolerate the entire ritual, they can often participate in well-chosen elements.
BE EMPATHIZED: See events through the eyes of the person with dementia. Changes in routines and environments can be difficult and frightening. Think about how decorations and events can be confusing or misinterpreted by the person with dementia.
ADJUST: Consider modifying or simplifying plans. For example, small changes such as changing the time of an event to coincide with the person’s best time of day or limiting the number of people in the environment at any one time can make the experience best for everyone. Watch for signs of stress or distress, and help the person find a place and time to relax and recover.
CAPTURE: Record memories of the person with dementia by encouraging memories and storytelling to preserve family history. Use props like pictures, food, and decorations to trigger forgotten memories. Take candid multigenerational photos or videos – they can be more touching and much easier than posed portraits.
ENJOY: Create memories. Don’t get so involved in the plans that you forget the purpose of the activity or event. The experience may not be like it used to be, but you can still find magical moments. Especially for the grieving person: Holidays are difficult when you are going through the loss or loss of a loved one. Be patient with yourself during your grief, and find support in comforting rituals and people. Do what’s right for you as you search for new ways to find peace while on vacation.
I would like to thank Randy of Garland Piggly Wiggly for all of his help and generous donations and contributions. All of us here at Garland Senior Center appreciate all he does for the center. Hope Randy, his family and all of his helpful staff at Garland Piggly Wiggly have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Thanks Randy!
Thanks to Pac Man from Pac Man’s Barber Shop here at Garland. Mr. Packer helps and we are truly grateful. Thanks for all you do to help Pac Man. We appreciate everything you do. Hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
We thank all of our donors, volunteers and everyone who contributes here at the center. Special thanks to Cleave’s Auto Repair here at Garland for your continued help and support. We thank you all for everything you do to help us. Hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
We recently started an exercise routine here and would like to encourage all of you to get outside and enjoy the Garland Senior Center Monday through Friday 8am to 5pm.
In closing, I would like to say that God bless you all. We are in the short ranks now! Never give up! Help is on the way! Keep Christ on Christmas and Jesus is the reason for the season! We elevate ourselves by elevating others. LIVE, LAUGH and LOVE without limits!
“We love because he loved us first.” 1 John 4:19
“Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10
Marie Faircloth is the director of the Garland Senior Center. The GSC is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday and can be reached by dialing 910-529-3931.