Karen's Poem - Dementia and a musical soul
11 October 2021
Karen works with us in our In Home and Community Support, Home Care Packages and Social Support Group teams. She commenced with healthAbility back in 2015 as a volunteer. Karen wrote this poem highlighting her experience with one of our Home Care Packages clients.
Kathy and Lisa are both healthAbility's Coordinators for our In Home Community Support service.
Kathy said "I have a lady I think you'll like
nearby in Plenty, so not much of a hike
Companionship and care will be your role,
Leigh* has dementia and a musical soul".
We hit it off in just two hours
from her garden she gifted me three camellia flowers.
I returned to see Leigh the following week
Somehow her outlook wasn't quite so bleak.
I said "What would you like to do today?"
"Lunch at a restaurant, is that okay?"
"Of course" I said with a grin on my face
"All you need to do is name the place".
To Greensborough I drove at her request
but first ensured she was warmly dressed.
Calamari she ordered with a white wine
at "Urban Grooves" we chose to dine.
"The meal was magnificent she said with a smile
I've not had Calamari for quite a while.
I'm ever so grateful to spend time with you
Have we time to get a bank statement too?".
"Yes, we'll go now, the banks not too far
Before the rain comes, quick let's get in the car".
Then to Peligra for coffee, cake and a chat
We spent half and hour talking about this and that.
On our way home she revealed to me
she's mostly alone and not often sees family.
"Well, we've had a great day" I said with a tear in my eye
Dropped her safely inside and said my goodbye.
Leigh asks the same questions each time we meet
as I walk through the living room to take a seat
I treat Leigh with respect and dignity as I take her hand
and know her brain's crumbling like falling sand.
Seven weeks have passed since that first day
Leigh has taught me a duet on the piano to play
I'll share her journey whatever that be
and battle through Dementia Leigh, family and me.
Just a thought for all who complain
I do agree lockdown is such a pain
but souls with Dementia live life in despair
and rarely meet people with time willing to share.
"Is that it?" I said with fear in my heart
as my brother and I witnessed mum depart.
Dementia took her from us and we are alone
but her wish and ours was granted she died safe at home.
You see Kathy's spirit is not easily lead
She chooses her carers with both heart and head
With Lisa her colleague they pick clients with Dementia
and pass onto carers to share a most usual adventure.
What a wonderful service healthAbility provide
With all three departments working side by side.
Caring for people in our community!
*Names have been changed to protect client's privacy.
*SSG - Social Support Groups, is now known as Connect Well Groups.