A few weeks ago I read in the Seattle Times about the new Aegis Living at Marymoor and their Memory Care Courtyard and it brought back so many of my own memories that I was inspired to write. They describe the courtyard as follows: “Take a trip back in time as you step into our vintage campground in the courtyard. We have recreated the memory of your favorite family camping trip- complete with an Airstream trailer, camp chairs and all of the makings for s’mores. “
I immediately thought of my grandmother, who had Alzheimer’s disease, and how that would have been absolutely perfect for her. One of her favorite things to do was to go camping. She and my grandfather owned a lot at Clearwood and every summer we would spend a week surrounded by the gorgeous pine trees, lovely lakes and endless trails. We would sleep in the RV- but most of our time was spent outdoors- hiking, swimming, exploring and making s’more by the fire. These were really happy times- and as I reflect back on them I realize how blessed we were to have had those experiences.
I also realize that as my grandmother’s memory slipped away- reminiscing about those days of camping would have probably brought her lots of joy. It would have sparked memories of happy times we had as a family, like the time we found the rock that looked like a baked potato and we put it on my grandpa’s plate that night at dinner! He, with a twinkle in his eye, went along with the joke and pretended to try to eat it. As children we were delighted with this silly prank- yet it had slipped to the back of our minds and was forgotten.
The visual cues of the camping scene at Aegis Living at Marymoor would undoubtedly bring out these memories- and many more. Knowing that my grandmother could have enjoyed the comfort and safety of the gated back yard while reminiscing about a very special time in her life makes me smile. Knowing there are communities like this makes me glad that there are so many more options for people with Alzheimer’s than there were 10 years ago.
If you need exceptional care for a senior in the privacy of your own home- then Capability Homecare is here for you, but if an Assisted Living Community is a better fit, than know that there are lots of wonderful options for you.