Hope is Not Cancelled
“Don’t lose hope. When the sun goes down, the stars come out”.
2020 was a year like most of us have never seen before. The pandemic was much worse than most predicted, but how can you predict something you have never faced before? There was a lot to learn, a lot of disappointments when it came to the pandemic and dealing with it. There was no playbook on how to handle what was happening or what was going to happen.
The pandemic took its toll on everyone. From the staff who took such precautions to protect themselves and the ones they cared for; to the residents and their families who could not be together even during the roughest times. But if you looked around, you could see small glimpses of hope. Small glimpses that provided the strength to power on.
There was the joy our residents felt when they realized they could use technology to “see” their loved ones. Whether it be Facetime, Zoom or Google Duo, it was fascinating and heart warming to them to be able to see their family faces and hear their voices. They could not physically hug them, but they could feel the hugs and love coming through the technology. Staff learned just how much it meant and made every effort to ensure they were able to connect whenever possible, with whatever means possible. At times it was hard to tell who it brought more joy to…the staff or the residents!
There were the window visits that meant so much. Again, not the same as being able to see or touch their loved ones, but for someone who was used to being able to visit on a daily basis it was a close second. It allowed them to feel close, see the smiles and even hear the voice they counted on for so long. Since George visited his mother on a very regular basis, he was almost like family to staff. He would walk the halls pushing his Mom to say hello to everyone and pass out Hershey Kisses to staff as a “thank you”. There was rarely a day when George would not be on Campus. Staff was almost as excited to see him at the window, as his Mom was.
There were the letters and cards of hope. From the Community close by to communications from as far as Los Angeles. Family members and complete strangers alike were sending love, hope and prayers to the staff and residents. Words of encouragement (and some amazing cookies which sometimes spoke louder than words!!) that carried the staff an extra day, allowed them to summon the strength to know we were succeeding. Technology, window visits, prayers, snacks and letters that all proved one thing…that HOPE IS NOT CANCELLED.