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My inspirational item was a casualty

June 22, 2015
by Kathleen Mears
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Everyone says I have a lot of stuff in my room. But when I first arrived at a nursing home, my room was virtually empty. Over the years, I added furniture to increase storage space. As I acquired more computer equipment, rolling stands were needed to store it. As time went by, things piled up in my room because there was no designated staff person to assist me to go through things and dispose of items no longer used or worn.

At times, church friends and volunteers helped me. Other times I hired someone to help me with this task.

It bothers me that I cannot rearrange or change things in my room myself. Whenever I have a willing helper, I get rid of items that are no longer of use. In fact, if I had regular help from a facility staff person, my room would look much neater. I think management would be surprised. Can you imagine what your living space would look like if you never straightened things up or threw things away?

A few years ago I found a deal on an old chest of drawers at a used furniture store. While I was there I saw a hanging sign in script, which read "Believe." I bought it and hung it on the wall above my TV at the bottom of my bed. I liked having an affirmation to read every day.

In January, when my room was emptied for cleaning and maintenance, I worried about my smaller possessions. I was told my small things were on the other bed in my room, and would be moved back when my room was finished.

A couple of days later, my aide moved the other bed and we heard a clatter. My "Believe" sign was lying broken on the floor. I showed no emotion because it was an inexpensive item. But I bought glue hoping someone on staff would glue it together for me. Unfortunately, that did not happen.

To me, keeping resident treasures is important. Although my "Believe" sign was a casualty, I will make sure my next one is unbreakable.


Kathleen Mears

Kathleen Mears has been a nursing home resident in Ohio for 20 years. She is an incomplete...