At the end of May, several residents helped Sr. Christina plant a small garden on our west patio.
Now, beets, peas, onions, peppers, cucumbers, and tomatoes are growing! Soon, it will be time to harvest.
The main intention of having this garden is to give our residents a fun project to take part in and a chance to get their hands dirty with tangible results.
Another fruit of the endeavor is the camaraderie which accompanies working together on a project.
The following poem was printed in our resident newsletter, The Broadcaster, in March of 2015. The source is unknown, but it is a lovely tribute to those who work with the elderly and the challenges they face. Thank you to all the staff who serve our residents on a daily basis!
It takes special people to care for the old
It takes great compassion, hearts of pure gold.
It takes being able to see beyond age,
To see beyond bodies, to overlook rage.
It takes being able to look deep inside
The hearts of the aged, where youth still resides.
It takes understanding to look through their pain.
And help them remember they’re people, again.
It takes lots of patience to wipe away tears,
To reach through confusion, to intercept fears.
it takes being willing to give of yourself
To those who are feeling they’re left on some shelf.
Indeed it’s a calling from heaven above,
to work with the aged and show them God’s love.
Though rewards on this earth,
indeed may seem few,
God is laying up treasures in heaven for you.
Three-fourths of our residents are 65 years of age or older. Therefore, it seems appropriate that we mention May’s observance which recognizes and honors our seniors.
Each year, the government’s Administration for Community Living sponsors “Older Americans Month.” This dates back to the Kennedy administration in 1963, when May was originally named Senior Citizen Month. It honors “older Americans and celebrating their contributions to our communities and our nation.” (See www.agingkingcounty.org/olderamericansmonth/)
This year, the agency is encouraging older Americans to Get into the Act, take charge of their health, be engaged in their communities, and make a positive impact in the lives of others, according to online materials they provide.
An interesting hypothesis they also provide is that “by the year 2020, more than 55 million U.S. adults will be over the age of 65.”
This month can be both a time to recognize the invaluable gift that older Americans are to the rest of society and a time to encourage them to engage in healthy habits and community engagement.
This month, why not thank an older American for who they are all they have done. And, why not stop by St. Anne’s and spend a little time visiting with our older Americans.