As our parents grow older, helping them cultivate an inner peace about the physical and health challenges they may be facing becomes more and more important to their overall well-being. While the physical challenges are easiest to see as our loved ones age, the emotional and spiritual ones are just as important to them, and can be more complex for us to understand.
Here are some suggestions to help understand and comprehend what our loved ones might be experiencing in all of these areas. When we consider the physical, spiritual, and emotional needs combined, it often fosters better connections with our loved ones, allowing us to relate more deeply.
Common Stages of Aging—and How to Help
With so many life experiences to look back on, it is common for loved ones to reminisce and reflect on their fondest memories. Encouraging these stories to be shared can be helpful for families. It may also help to speak with a spiritual leader or mental health expert to help work through any difficult emotions to feel at peace with the past.
Giving our loved ones the medical attention they need is always our first priority. However, as the difficulties of aging are often painful and frustrating, there is comfort to be found through prayer and spiritual activities. Taking time to pray with your loved one, or take them to their favorite church on Sunday mornings provides needed spiritual and emotional support.
Other simple gestures can give emotional comfort, too. Placing additional seating for visitors while your loved one is recuperating in bed, or playing their favorite music can definitely make a difference in their spirits and overall mood. Engaging them in a simple activity like coloring or doing a puzzle can also help engage their mind, which helps boost their emotions as well.
Loss of Friend
Grieving the death of close friends and family members can be especially trying as we age. Companionship is important at every decade of life. If social circles are not as close as they once were, or friends have passed or moved away, it can be hard to find a similar sense of community. Helping your loved one engage into new circles of friendship as they adjust to these life changes can help them stay connected and heal.
Finding ways to give your loved one the comfort and attention they need while allowing them to maintain their desired level of independence can then become a difficult balancing act. Communication is key. Keeping in touch with your loved one and their caregivers allows you to provide the appropriate level of support they need, while enabling them to maintain their dignity and independence. Being respectful of your loved one’s desire for independence, as well as their limitations, can help all parties work together in harmony.
Talking with loved ones about their fears and hopes around death can be an incredibly powerful experience. Faith eases this process for many. For others, being able to reflect on their life, celebrate their life, and be close with their own family and friends can be comforting. Being present with our loved ones can help ensure that their wishes are respected.
Harmony Senior Relocation Services
Aging is full of changes, but there are many ways to engage the support your family needs. Harmony Senior Relocation Services provides hands-on assistance for seniors who are in need of downsizing and moving to a smaller residence-whether that be independent living, assisted-living or memory care. We are honored to play a role in helping our clients’ gently and comfortably transition to their new home.
If you have questions about our services and how we have helped families like yours, please visit www.harmonymoves.com. We also offer free in-home consultations. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (317) 662-4490 to schedule your meeting. We would love to hear from you!