The holidays are nearly here. And regardless of where your loved ones reside — whether at home or in a care setting — these next several weeks are sure to feel different than in years past.
Even so, this can still be a memorable and uplifting time — it just requires a bit more thought and planning than usual. Here are some suggestions from the 2Sisters team…
This is a new experience for everyone. If your loved one resides in a community, check in well ahead of time (now!) to understand the specific protocols in place. Are holiday visitors permitted onsite? If your loved one visits in your home, what happens upon their return (is there a quarantine period)?
Overall, be as patient with staff and administrators as you can; we are all learning as we go.
If errands, cleaning, or personal care are needed to pull off a smooth home visit, get started early, so you can enjoy time with family. Delegate what you can — you don’t need to do it all yourself.
For loved ones that suffer from dementia, depression, or anxiety, remember that the holidays can be a mixed blessing. The break from the usual routine — guests stopping by, being picked up to go off to an unfamiliar location, etc. — can be jarring. Shorter visits with fewer visitors goes a long way, as do pre-recorded video messages from friends and family.
If visiting a loved one, remember that “taking over” someone’s kitchen to cook for them can cause anxiety. Consider, instead, sending prepared food ahead of time (items that just need to be chilled or heated can set you up for success).
Weather permitting, make arrangements to socialize outdoors as much as possible.
Overall, try to keep holiday plans simple, and make sure to talk things through first with all involved, so there are no surprises.
And finally, please treat yourself to an extra dessert this year — we have all earned it!
From all of us at 2Sisters, we wish you and your family a warm, happy and healthy holiday season!
Michelle, Alyson, Kristine, Emily