An Article by Felicia Niven
Photos by Alex Anton
Finding that Perfect Fit
When my 82-year-old father spent over a week in the hospital last fall, reality hit home quickly. He would need real help when he came home, and my mother wasn’t going to be able to do it alone. I began turning over scenarios in my mind. Would I be able to move in and help my mother, while still running a business and managing my own household? It made me wish we had planned for this occurrence.
As a matter of fact, we had. Unbeknownst to me, my parents had purchased long term care insurance years ago, which fully covered the cost of his care. But until then, it never occurred to me to have the conversation with my parents—the one where we thoughtfully consider where they’d like to spend their Golden years when they could no longer care for themselves. I’d avoided the topic because it wasn’t comfortable or easy to broach. But avoiding it is clearly not the answer.
As the sandwich generation, we’re constantly pulled between caring for, and supporting, our children—and our parents. Now as we contemplate retirement, we’re also going to be helping our parents to get the right care, and find the right place. It’s an awesome responsibility. As with any situation where I found myself unsure, I turned to the experts, and got some sound advice.
“Because circumstances change gradually over time, families may not realize they need help until it becomes quite apparent,“ says Alysia Price, MSW, LSW, CALA, Administrator of Seashore Gardens Living Center (SGLC) & Assisted Living. “At that point, it can be overwhelming.” She cautions families to spend some time researching the options. “Ask questions. Find out what your insurance covers. Take a tour. Finding the right fit for your loved one is so important. It makes the difference between a seamless experience and one that can be quite stressful.”
A Glimpse Inside Seashore Gardens Living Center
Seashore Gardens Living Center (SGLC) offers a continuum of services which include assisted living, short and long term nursing care, Alzheimer’s care, respite care and full rehabilitation services all under one roof. There’s also Seashore Gardens Without Walls, the home health service which turned out to be a wonderful fit to get my father back on his feet. The residential programs provide full support in the tradition of honoring thy father and mother.
“We care for our residents’ complete health needs, including medical, social and emotional,” says Edmond Francisco, BSN, RN, Director of Nursing, SGLC. “We have to look at the entire person not just the medical side. We get to know them and their families. We appreciate the journey that has brought our residents to us. We think of them as our extended family and we honor them as such.”
SGLC’s active schedule of activities includes stimulating programs, themed parties, trips, a beauty salon, gift shop and a highly-trained professional staff to see to their needs. These activities and events are at the core of that most important element of social interaction with other people outside of the family. The staff of Seashore Gardens Living Center is skilled in encouraging social interaction among residents to make their days more fulfilling.