Here comes the sun Print E-mail
Written by Kelly McNeal  
Wednesday, 12 April 2017



     They rushed for the open door in the Activities room. It was April 10 and it had been a long cold lonely winter, to borrow a phrase.

     Actually, they were quite orderly. We had announced the spring “steady on your feet” test a few hours earlier and it was their ticket to sunshine: show us how much help you need to get out to the big courtyard and we’ll plan accordingly.

     Staff from activities, nursing and administration prepared the exit strategy: we have independent walkers, people needing one or two assists and the group known as mobile but not ambulatory: mobile in wheelchairs but no longer safe on their feet. In between, there are those with ambulatory and mobile capacity but they need walkers of some sort and are safer if a staff person is within reach.

     Seventy degrees of sunshine elicits gasps of joy when it’s been 200 days or so since the last exposure. Memory is fickle- no one knows the last time we were all out like this; we just went in one afternoon, probably in late September and that was that.

     There are a lot of new faces, under the sunhats and behind the sunglasses this spring. You know what that means…we still die of pneumonia; it just takes six tries!

     You can appreciate how our palliative and hospice end of life programs at Bellamy and Watson have developed from this statistic: of the last 20 deaths among our guests, only four died in a hospital…

     The staff takes great pride in their palliative and hospice skills and we’re careful not to be seen as radical practitioners. When we get to know the residents and their families and their illnesses, we can provide comprehensive end of life care.

     If end of life care involves napping in the sun and enjoying a cool drink and a snack, then the Fields may be the place for your family.

     Bellamy has a wonderful group of male guests this spring; the most ever. We are dusting off the fishing rods and rolling the putting greens. For the Audubon crowd, the bird houses are already occupied and we have some resident warblers back for the fifth or sixth time. We’re on the take-off and landing routes for Pease Air Force base, so the crowd in the yard is treated to some daily displays of our military might.

     And finally, when the wind is right, we’ll fly some kites, reprising George Harrison’s joyful “Here Comes the Sun” with Lennon and McCartney’s obscure “For the Benefit of Mr. Kite.”

     “La la la la, life goes on…”

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 April 2017 )
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