Joyous Paradox (Blog Recommendation)

April 14, 2013

Home Health - ReadingIn late March, I was contacted by someone who had read my blog post about reading aloud to the elderly, and wanted to repost it on her blog. After reading some of her blog, I quickly agreed.

Those of you who have known me for some time know something of the journey I went through with my elderly parents in the last years of their lives. We had always been a very close family (I have no siblings, which likely drew my parents and I even closer). When both parents fell within five days of each other, and ended up in nursing homes (separate ones), it was difficult for all of us. I talk about how reading helped us, particularly Mum and me, in my blog post. A blog like Joyous Paradox would have helped enormously as well.

 Joyous Paradox is written by a woman who is a health care professional working in the field of eldercare. This is a personal blog, not a professional one, but it brings a wealth of experience as well as compassion and understanding to every post. In her own words, Mary Ann writes “about health, healing and caregiving for elders, their family members, and their paid and volunteer care partners.”

Mary Ann knows the challenges that elders and their families face. She also knows how to deal with those challenges and struggles in a way that honors the person. She says, “My colleagues and I emphasize wellness, supporting our clients in activities that bring them joy and satisfaction.” She recognizes the value of things such as reading, poetry, music, the arts — the clinical care of aging people is of great importance, but so is care for the mind, heart, and inner spirit. Joyous Paradox is filled with heart and spirit.

I am grateful that Mary Ann discovered my blog post on reading aloud to the elderly, because that connected me with her, her blog and her work. I am joyous as I share this resource with you.

As Rosalynn Carter says of caregiving, “there are only four kinds of people in the world – those who have been caregivers, those who are currently caregivers, those who will be caregivers, and those who will need caregivers.” Mary Ann’s blog will help us in all those stages.

12 People reacted on this

  1. Beth, I’m so sorry that you lived through such a rough time when your parents were at the last few years of their lives. My husband had to help care for his dad, but not to that extent since his father lived in an assisted living home. Joyous Paradox sounds like a great resource for everyone at some point in their lives. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  2. As the last part of the post mentions, each of us may be in one of the “care giver” positions, whether as a giver or recipient. It’s good to know there are helpful blogs like this on to turn to.

  3. Beth, such a lovely post. You know I share your feelings about reading to the elderly. My husband is the full time chaplain at a very large senior care facility here. I’ve asked him about reading to the elderly and he assured me that there is a church that sends volunteers to read to the elderly at their facility. (He’ll never retire.) I think if it is so important to their overall wellness.

    Also thought it was neat when I received an email from author Sharon Draper after I reviewed one of her books. During the summer she goes to Children’s Hospital in the Cincinnati weekly and reads to kids during the summer. Another important group..

    1. I am delighted to learn about the church that sends volunteers to read to the elderly there. And thank you so much for highlighting the importance of reading to kids in hospital!

      Thanks, Pat!

  4. Such a nice post, Beth, and Joyous Paradox sounds like a wonderful blog. Whenever you mention your parents, my heart aches again for what you all went through. Hard enough to have anyone in a nursing home, but that they couldn’t be together just seems so unfair. They were lucky to have you, though 🙂

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