Dougal's Blog

Kick it to me Mark!

Each week I like to experiment with a new stimulus in the memory units. Today it was a football, I wasn't sure if it was viable or if anyone would be interested.

We feel as though the residents sometimes are lacking the outdoor experience, especially on a day like today when the sun is shining and there is a gentle breeze. So if there is any way we can entice them outside we go for it! I don't need much encouragement to play outside and for most of my youth I'd be kicking the footy around to myself in the backyard.

Mark spends nearly all day walking around the unit with no certain motivation, but you can't help to think sometimes he is looking for a way out. He has only vision in one eye so his depth of vision isn't great. Keeping this in mind I handed him the ball and then encouraged him to throw it back. What happened next was amazing his face lit up and his entire body language was different, he was playing!! We continued this for the next half hour, passing the footy to one and other.

 This made us both feel great and from what I observed it was pretty eye opening for the diversion therapists too.

Can't wait to play again next week.

 
Come on in

 

 

For the past 6 weeks I haven't ventured inside Lori's room, as I thought she wanted to be alone.  I would stand outside trying to initiate some interaction, I didn't want to scare her.  I felt I needed her to, in some way,  invite me in.  It was when I was leaving  the day before that I realised she has the same surname as a friend of mine, that afternoon I inquired with my friend if she was related to Lori and in fact it was her grandma.  This made feel as though through our conversation that I now had permission to enter, so the following day I did. 

I began by sitting in the doorway on the floor, ever so slowly I would slide a little closer to her while she was sitting on the edge of her bed motioning  and talking in her own world. We made eye contact and there was a moment of acknowledgement not pronounced or announced but a moment nonetheless.

Offering my hand, I was hoping for a physical connection, one that was gentle and a way for us to feel each other's presence.  As we connected Autumn had arrived and was playing the uke gently filling the room with a  beautiful sound & energy.

This continued for around 20 mins, I would move in front of her and try to entice some interaction & connection, we both felt that we had experienced something very special.

Now that we have made the leap we are looking forward to seeing  where we can take this.

 

 
Crescendo of Life

 

Crescendo of Life

 

Today began a little sombre as we said goodbye to a friend but at the same time we were  happy to know that he was at peace and together with his life partner who had made the journey to the next level about 18 months ago. RIP Mate. So glad to have met you and shared a few laughs.

Our spirits were lifted whilst spending the afternoon with the Residents at Saint Phillips, we decided to take in a whiteboard and see what would eventuate with little instruction or direction. handing over markers and giving subtle encouragement.  To be honest I find there is a sort of mental barrier when offering the chance to draw or create, is it self doubt? I'm not sure.  The physical ability is there but I feel there is a hurdle of sorts.  I put the whiteboard  to the side and began painting my hand in vibrant colour, doing this I wanted to entice the residents in, at the same time Autumn began playing some tunes on the piano. She played a few bars over and over again, the crew chimed in sporadically,  one in particular was repeating a line and she managed to time it perfectly as if she was the chorus. We even had one of the residents sing who usually doesn't partake in the group sessions.   It is these moments of magic  that you can't plan or orchestrate they just happen.

 

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Poem From the Heart

Poems from the Heart

I had been spending some time talking with Stella finding out a little bit about each other.  She is upset that her sight is diminishing as she is an avid reader but still manages to smile and is blessed that her neighbour Bernie visits most days and reads or sings to her the poetry that he has written over the past 50 odd years. Stella insisted that I visit him before I leave that afternoon.

I am so glad I did, I spent the best part of an hour reading and reciting the words that Bernie had written, his hearing was great but this ensured that most rooms close by also had the pleasure of hearing me recite as my voice was being elevated to make certain the author sitting in front of me could hear me clearly.

The following week when I returned Bernie was gone, the reality of time is ever present.

 

 

http://www.berniegleeson.com/

 

 
Maureen's PaRTAYYY

 

Maureen's Partay

We had the pleasure of sharing Maureen's birthday & decided that we could plan an outing, one that may or may not come to fruition but the fun is in the planning and letting  their imagination run wild.

Location

Bowls Club next door

Who's Coming

All the crew at Homefield

Present Wishing Well

Saddle

Horse

Unicorn

Beer

A book about horses

Food

Sausage Rolls

Cake

Anzac biscuits

We are hoping that we can have an outing to the bowls club next door in the very near future, with or without the fore mentioned unicorn. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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