Marguerite was legally blind due to her glaucoma. As the condition had progressed, she had lost more and more of her ability to do the things she’d always loved. A librarian by trade, reading had always been her passion. Even after retirement, she had continued volunteering at the library each week, until the glaucoma had robbed too much of her sight to continue.

Elder Care Austell, GA: Staying Connected and Mentally Healthy

She was ever the optimist though, and she was good at finding ways to do what she wanted to do. When she had to give up driving due to her vision changes, she had hired an elder care aide to drive her to and from the library to complete her volunteer shift at the library bookshop. Eventually, Marguerite’s vision loss was too advanced even to do that much. However, she continued to have the home care aide drive her to the library each week. She used the opportunity to pick up a new audiobook. While they were there, they always took the time to have the aide read to Marguerite in front of the fireplace — a tradition that hearkened back to her childhood. As a young girl, she would read with her grandmother at the library’s fireplace, so this ritual always evoked special warm memories and did her mental state of being well. 

When the pandemic forced the closure of the library, Marguerite was temporarily stumped. Going to the library was such an important part of her mental health and overall quality of life. She could almost not bear the thought of giving it up — but, she had no choice. Optimistic as ever, she looked for a way to make the best of the situation. 

 

She continued to have the home care aide read to her in her own home. While not the same as going to the library, it was comforting nonetheless. She had been working with this young lady for a long time, and she enjoyed her smile and company. Especially now, with so few opportunities to interact with others, seeing a friendly, familiar face in-person (even if it was partially covered by a mask) was priceless! 

Marguerite had the home care aide purchase a portable “fireplace” so they could turn it on for their reading sessions. The home care aide started making a pot of tea as well, which added a nice special feeling to their time together.  

After a few weeks, they finished the book they had been reading. Marguerite sent the home care aide to the library to pick up a new one, along with some fresh audiobooks. Soon after that, they started utilizing the library’s website to choose new audiobooks. The aide acted as Marguerite’s eyes and helped her navigate the site. Each week on the way to Marguerite’s home, the aide would stop by the library and pick up the audiobooks that were held for her.  

No, it wasn’t the same as things were before — “But, whatever is?” thought Marguerite with a smile. She didn’t get to be 88 without a little bit of grace and flexibility. She enjoyed her new routine with her home care aide. She was very grateful for the opportunity to continue her love of reading, her connection with the library, and her social connection during the challenging time. 

 

If you or an aging loved-one is considering Elder Care in Austell, GA please contact the caring staff at Universal Home Care And Services, Inc today (678) 426-2701 

 

Sources 

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html