Posted: April 28, 2021
At Heritage Crossing our residents and families are centered on everything that we do. We want to make sure our residents and families are happy and well taken care of. It warms our hearts to hear the stories of our resident’s families on how Heritage Crossing has impacted their lives. Read below the story of the Horton Girls, the daughters of two of our residents.
Until dementia took over the lives of our parents, they lived by a simple maxim – their love for each other was the centerpiece of their lives. They cherished their 65+ year love story and the children and grandchildren that came from that union.
When we embarked on this difficult journey with their dementia, we stumbled and suffered setbacks. We missed our vibrant, smart, and loving parents and longed for their return. We transitioned from the parent/daughter relationship we have known all our lives to just wanting to spend time with them, even if conflicts arose. Some of our visits and phone calls were combative and ended poorly. At these times, Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s advice came in handy: “It helps sometimes to be a little deaf.”
Other visits were pleasant and left us feeling happy and relieved. What made the difference?
We noticed their eyes lit up and they were more engaged in the conversation when we made it all about them and the wonderful lives they have led. We brought in items from the past— pictures, letters, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, and filled the visit with a trip down memory lane. They relayed their favorite memories that these items triggered and our visits became more enjoyable for all. Although Dad has told his stories of being a 10-year-old “soda jerk” in Chicago and Mom has told her stories of growing up in Birmingham dozens of times, we acted as if we were hearing them for the first time. For a few moments, we saw the vibrant, smart, and loving people we have missed.
Although this does not always lead to the perfect visit, more often than not it leads to a good visit. It also allows us daughters to create new memories with our parents… that someday we may re-live with each other during a trip down memory lane.
The Horton Girls