My Wonderful Mother- How the System Nearly Failed Her

Here I am with my mother, shortly to be 89, at a wonderful family event last summer. Since then she has been hospitalized with a serious infection and moved into a skilled nursing center for 6 weeks to “recover”. In a matter of days of admission, she was experiencing significant dementia (aka “hospital delirium”) and on the road to permanent disability. Oh no.

Thankfully, my family could be very present and hands-on to support her in a substantial recovery. We are grateful for the excellent medical care she received during this necessary stay at a skilled nursing center, although it came as a shock to me that this is the standard of care for our mothers, fathers and loved ones if they should find themselves in the same situation. Mom spent six weeks and many, many hours alone in her room, lacking any social stimulation, friendly connection, meaningful interaction…yet she looked for anything to do, taking full advantage of the twice weekly bingo and thrice weekly movie. A fleeting conversation here and there, a book and phone calls from afar.

She counted down the days and she survived. You go, Mom. You are sturdy…and lucky.

Can’t we do better than this with all we know about the brain, body and soul of adults as they age? We need social engagement and real interactions with others. Senior residences, senior centers and other settings servicing older adults have an opportunity to support community, relationships and belonging, reminding people of their own humanity. Want to know how….?

The CircleTalk Leader Course is on Friday, December 1, 2017 in Boulder Colorado.

Please, join us in a day of personal and professional growth as you learn the CircleTalk Method.

CircleTalk is a proven strategy to reduce isolation and loneliness for older adults.

This is an enriching, interactive learning experience where you will experience CircleTalk simulations, share observations in small and large group discussions, and practice new skills with coaching.

As a graduate of the CircleTalk Leader Course, you will be prepared to:

  • Build a culture of meaningful engagement, belonging and well-being by employing best practices in group dynamics
  • Support a positive and open environment for telling personal stories, insights and feelings
  • Become an excellent active listener. Learn how to show value for all participation in group discussions
  • Lead creative activities and processes that cultivate self-expression for all circle members
  • Use and customize CircleTalk practices to support transitioning residents so that they may integrate into the social network of their new community
  • Accommodate to meet all the needs of group members including those with hearing, vison and cognitive challenges

We hope to see you on December 1st to experience the potential of CircleTalk and have an enriching, interactive learning experience.

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