Polishing Silver and Changing Seniors’ Lives

It’s Home Care, Only Better…

Ruth Larson is an entertainer – that’s her passion. As her friends say, “she’s a very good cook who pays attention to every detail from presentation to feast.” The busy details of planning and cooking a meal define Ruth to the core – she loves her friends and providing a place for them to gather and strengthen their bonds of friendship. This motivates her to shine on. She managed just fine on her own until she ended up in a transitional care unit (TCU) after a health crisis and needed others to help her heal.

ladies-enjoying-mealAfter leaving the TCU, Ruth moved to Parkshore’s Reflections neighborhood, a SilverCrest property that partners with Lifesprk to bring on-site Life Care Management to its residents. With the help of her Lifesprk Life Care Manager (RN) Jody Jensen, Ruth is slowly regaining her stamina and is now moving around independently with her walker. But as a Lifesprk Life Care Manager, Jody is trained to look at more than just Ruth’s physical capabilities. Jody knows when the spark in someone’s eye has lost its luster. “Ruth told me her niece Mary was bringing a few of Ruth’s friends over to have lunch in her apartment,” shared Jody. “A wonderful gesture to lift her spirits–but I noticed a worried look come over Ruth’s face, so I dug a little deeper.” Ruth was concerned with the details – how would she set the table, get her apartment in order and get herself ready? Ruth went over to her silverware drawer and took out a few spoons: “Oh my, look at these, they need polishing.” For someone whose passion is entertaining, these details are very important.

To ease Ruth’s mind, Jody assured her she would coordinate a team to help get things together according to how Ruth wanted things done, right down to including blue in the table setting because it was her favorite color. Jody had housekeeping come to clean and Lifesprk caregiver Gorpu Daniels gave Ruth a shower and shampooed her hair, and Jody polished the silverware, washed the china and set the table. With a touch of the curling iron, Ruth was ready for company. “She sat at the table proud of what she was able to accomplish,” said Jody.

The simplest difference between Lifesprk and traditional home care lies in these details–the ones according to Ruth that mean the most to her. Healing from a fall or illness will happen with the right support, but one often overlooked aspect in today’s healthcare is the emotional and psychological piece. The roller coaster begins when people lose their spark and feel life’s lost its purpose because a crisis has occurred. Things like polishing silver, setting the table and getting ready seem too overwhelming. But Lifesprk knows these important aspects of daily life like Ruth’s are the key to helping people heal both physically and emotionally. Ruth felt that power the moment she was in control of what needed to be done and accepted the help. Ruth said to Jody, “I don’t know how I’m going to thank you. This is so nice of you to help and this is a very nice place to live. Maybe my friends will want to move here.”

“When we focus on the person first, not issues, outcomes improve drastically,” added Jody. “That’s the Lifesprk difference.”

Share your stories – how have you changed someone’s life by addressing the seemingly simple details? How did it spark their life? Why do you think it matters? Share On!