Seven years ago I was living back in rural Iowa next door to my aging grandparents. It was a very small small community and within a two block radius I had my parents, two aunts, an uncle, and a partridge in a pear tree. Actually it was a turtle dove, but that's besides the point.
My grandma Janet had always been a very joyfully simple lady whose laugh could be picked out of a crowd of a thousand Iowans. I had been working in senior care for over two years and understood the value of what we do for older adults. I was confident on what we do and how to articulate it.
I started to notice a cognitive decline in Janet in 2012. It was harder for her to concentrate, she started forgetting where she would leave things, very simple things that made me adore her all the more. I adored her, but I also knew that she was beyond what my grandfather Sam was able to handle on his own. We tried to help as much as we could, but I couldn't convince anyone in my family that dementia was real and that we need to be thinking of the future! My dad would say "That's just how she is", my grandpa Sam would say "She's always arguing with me! (p.s. Don't argue with someone with dementia and Alzheimer's, it wont get you anywhere). I began to get to my wits end in the summer of 2013. I had been actively trying to share with my family the need of a memory care community for Janet and no one would listen! I felt like a failure and no one would hear that grandma might have dementia.
I realized at that point that I had to go outside of my family in order to get people on the bus. I reached out to my local assisted living and asked for resources. Their nurse offered to come and meet with my family and Janet and give a free assessment. I jumped on the opportunity!
It was a turning point with my grandmother's care because there was an "unbiased" presence that said it was time to look at other housing options. I am glad that I had someone nearby that was able to lend their expertise. Unfortunately, Janet went to find Jesus in 2017, but we were so blessed to have those final years be ones of comfort instead of stress. Thank you!
-Luke, Grandson and Healthcare Professional
Aurora Senior Living is managed by Ebenezer, Minnesota’s largest senior living operator. Ebenezer is the senior housing division of Fairview Health Services and has over 100 years of experience serving older adults.
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