Upon first hearing about this blog and looking for a success story I immediately thought of a resident we had here a few months ago. A woman in her early 60s that had suffered a stroke and recovered to be living by herself with family support. She was currently in our facility after falling and fracturing her hip. During her stay she received PT and OT. She was always willing to participate with therapy and completed a variety of activities during her stay. She completed the usual strength, balance, and ADL tasks. However, during this time we were also able to complete many higher level activities to really see how she would take care of herself at home including a home assessment. The home assessment really gave us the “big picture” about how she would be able to manage in her own environment. After the home assessment we could really focus on cooking, cleaning, walking up and down steps which were activities the resident struggled slightly with during the home assessment.
She became a light to many of the residents and encouraged all the residents to participate in activities and engage in conversation like they never had before. She enjoyed spending time talking with the residents as well as staff. To some she may have looked like a “busy body” but I believe that she was inspired by the positive feedback she was getting from helping the other residents in the facility. It was almost time for her to be discharged home and she suffered another fall and ended up spending more time here. She was very motivated to complete therapy and go home however she struggled with wanting to stay at the facility and move to the assisted living unit. Ultimately she decided that going home was going to be the best result for her. She had a lot of family support and had the ability to go home and take care of herself. She plans to come back and volunteer to continue to support and help the other residents. In the end I felt like as therapist we did everything in our power to make her as independent as possible which allowed her to have the
option of what she wanted to do…where she wanted to live. At the same time, we learned the lesson that what someone originally wants and strives for may not be what they end up wanting in the end.