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March 8, 2024

HERstory: Honoring the Journey of Individuals Living with Dementia

Category: Memory Care

Author: Sydney McCall, Resident Services Director

Women’s History Month

HERstory serves as a tribute to the unique journey, experiences, and contributions of an individual living with dementia. Each HERstory carries a rich past of memories, relationships, and accomplishments that define their identity. As dementia progresses, memories begin to fade. Preserving and sharing these narratives become invaluable in honoring the person affected and maintaining their dignity. At The Burlington Creek Senior Living, we believe in acknowledging and celebrating each individual’s life story. Through this approach, we affirm the inherent worth and complexity of those living with dementia. It allows us to transcend the limitations imposed by their condition.

Through storytelling, we bridge the gap between the past and the present. This fosters meaningful interactions and cultivates a sense of belonging for individuals living with dementia. By embracing their narratives with empathy and compassion, we counteract stigma, dispel misconceptions, and promote a culture of inclusivity and respect for individuals affected by dementia.

Below is a HERstory about one of the residents living in our Memory Care Neighborhood.

Carol W. was born in Kansas City, MO, in July 1948. She attended Bishop Ward High School, graduating in 1968. Carol enjoyed coloring and listening to music. She knew her mother couldn’t afford to take her to any art schools, but that did not discourage her from drawing, coloring, and painting. 

Carol traveled with her best friend, Mary Beth, whom she met in grade school right after high school graduation. They traveled by train to Winter Park, CO, to the ski resort just to book with the good-looking ski instructors. She also flew to Disney World in 1969 to do fun and exciting things. Carol’s adventures slowed down when she went to work for Hallmark as an Order Filler. Only eight months later, she received an offer for the position of Assistant Administrator.

Mary Beth set up a blind date between her and David, introducing them in April 1976. David took Carol to Crown Center for dinner, and they agreed the first date was boring. Carol and David were married in October 1978. Carol always listens to other people’s stories, and she loves to share her own. She often thinks of the love and happiness her husband brings.

Sharing the life story of someone living with dementia is not just an act of preserving memories; it’s an embodiment of compassion, understanding, and respect. By embracing their past, we honor their journey and provide valuable insights into who they are beyond the constraints of their condition through HERstory.

PrairieStone Senior Living is a comprehensive community soon to be offering independent living plus, assisted living, and memory care, accompanied by an array of services and floor plan options. Our amenities include restaurant dining, outdoor and private dining, a 24-hour bistro, concierge service, housekeeping, events and entertainment, personal care, a salon and barber, transportation services, a patio and firepit, and more. Our community extends beyond our campus, providing residents with the opportunity to explore the local downtown area, featuring charming shops and restaurants. Nature enthusiasts can visit the picturesque George Wyth State Park for nature walks and birdwatching or enjoy the stunning scenery along the Cedar River. Cultural events and festivals, such as the Cedar Basin Jazz Festival and Sturgis Falls Celebration, offer even more opportunities for engagement. PrairieStone residents have convenient access to a wealth of adventures and activities, both within and outside the community.

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