As we head into the holidays there will be lots of opportunities to be with family and friends. This is an important time of year not to forget our seniors. After working in a senior care community I noticed that during the holidays all manner of folks would head our way to sing carols, have the day care kids come by for a visit and drop off various treats. While all of that is appreciated more than you can know – if you were to ask our seniors what they would love for Thanksgiving (or any day for that matter) you might hear something like this…..
T ake me out. (for a drive, to lunch, let's catch a movie, to go for a short shopping trip)
H ave a meal with me. (or bring dinner on over - and some for the freezer)
A sk me to tell you some of my favorite stories about my life.
N otes and cards tell me you remember me and are thinking about me.
K eep tabs on my personal needs (clothing, toiletries, haircuts, nails, undies)
S end me a surprise in the mail. (everyone likes to get a package now and then)
G o to church with me. (I miss the ceremony and rituals)
I nvite me over to your house for a visit. (maybe even overnight)
V oice. (please be mine when I need an advocate with doctors, caregivers, family)
I nclude me in special events (life events are important to me)
N ever forget how much I gave to you.
G ive me a chance to talk – while you just listen.
To show our parents, family, neighbors and friends who are seniors that we are truly THANKFUL for them we must give them the most precious thing that we have to offer…. OUR TIME, one on one, fully engaged, paying close attention to them and their needs. Ask any senior what it is that they really want for the holidays – they will tell you. I want you!
I'm giving you this information EARLY so plan now how you will include and honor the seniors in your life this holiday season.
Don’t forget there are many seniors in every community who may have no family, are unable to be with family or friends or who may be housebound. Offer them your time and share your blessings with them. You will be richer for the experience and will learn the true meaning of the abundance of Thanksgiving!