​How Home Care Helped Harriet Find Peace

Interim HealthCare Blogs
Posted: 11/9/2020 1:36 PM by Interim HealthCare
Harriet felt antsy. She thought she probably needed to move. Her two story home was getting too big for her 89-year-old body to keep up with. She had trouble getting up the stairs and couldn’t keep up with the housework.

She called a home care agency and asked them to send out an aide to help with the housework. The aide came and did a marvelous job. With the aide’s help, the housework wasn’t a problem anymore. Still, Harriet felt unsettled. She loved her home, and enjoyed living independently, but she couldn’t shake the feeling it was time for her to take another step. 

She was ready to simplify. Downsize. Get rid of some things. She talked with the home care agency about her feelings, and they understood. 

Each week after the housekeeping was done, the aide started to help Harriet go through the garage. It wasn’t heavy work — she was simply helping open boxes and sort the contents per Harriet’s directions. 

“Charity donation,” Harriet would declare.
“Let’s keep that one!” 
“Oh, no! I can’t believe I still have that!”
“That should go to my son.”
“Throw that in the trash!”

They worked slowly but steadily, making their way through one or two boxes each week. Harriet enjoyed the time thoroughly. Reliving the memories brought up by each box of her life that she had carefully packed away decades ago was incredibly meaningful and satisfying. They sorted through late husband’s dress clothing, boxes of knick knacks and camping gear that had been untouched for decades. With each passing box she felt more settled.

One week they encountered a box of old photographs. Harriet was overwhelmed with emotion at the sight and set them aside. Soon, she set up a second afternoon each week for the home care aide to help her put together a memory book with the photos. On Tuesdays they would work through boxes in the garage. On Thursdays, they went through photos. Harriet asked her to write notes on the back of each photograph, and they started to sort them out by year or event. 

They worked together in this way for over two years. Slowly going through Harriet’s memories, belongings, photos and life as she put everything in order. The home care aide would drive Harriet to the donation drop off, or just take loads on her own if Harriet asked her. Sometimes she would run to the store and pick up storage containers or photo albums, or whatever else Harriet asked her to get.

By the time they were through, Harriet had cleared out most of the belongings she felt were no longer necessary. She had compiled a set of photo albums, all organized and captioned to her liking. Most importantly, Harriet finally felt settled. 

A few weeks shy of her 92nd birthday, Harriet had a small stroke which landed her in the hospital for a few days. When the doctors released her they recommended she bring in home care to help out around the house as she recovered. Her wonderful home care aide came to help her get settled back into home.

Harriet felt incredibly blessed and deeply at peace.

Sources
https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-gift-aging/201903/remembering-meaning-and-wholeness-in-later-life

https://www.healthline.com/health/life-review-therapy#life-review-therapy-benefits

If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Sugarhouse, UT, contact the caring staff at Interim Healthcare. Call today 801-401-3515.

Author: Michael and Marlena Hawkins, Owners, Interim HealthCare, Salt Lake City, UT 


Interim HealthCare of Salt Lake City has been in business since February 2014, providing in-home personal care and support services that help our elderly and/or disabled neighbors live enriched, safe and independent lives. Our goal is to provide customized care and support services that make it possible for our clients to remain in the comfort of their own homes rather than relocate to an assisted living facility. Interim HealthCare is family owned by Michael and Marlana Hawkins, and is a Veteran Owned Small Business.

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