Independence – Vampire Verisimilitude

There’s only so much one Vampire can do.

This weekend, Americans will be drinking alcohol, eating grilled food, and trying not to blow their fingers off with fireworks. That’s easy when you can go to the store, buy what you want, and come home to celebrate with friends and family.

IndependenceWalkerFlagBut what if you can’t? West Virginia is full of rest homes, both assisted and non-assisted (I’m not including hospice, which is an entirely different thing). Myself and a few volunteers have recently been paying these places a visit, looking for and and all discrepancies, opportunities for improvement, but mostly abusers and people who shouldn’t be working there — a bit of a pet peeve of mine.

People underestimate their independence and how quickly they can lose it. But for the elderly, there is a sense of being useless, like pets that need cared for. No one wants that. No one likes to feels they can’t do what they want when they want to, and I’m not only talking about growing old.

When I needed blood and a safe place to rest for the daytime — all of which was a bit of a shock when it happened — I had to depend on others (and still do) and I’ll always be grateful to have them. Vampirism aside, there are far too many other debilitating diseases that exist which can take away one’s mind, mobility, or worse. You won’t know what you’ve lost until it’s gone.

Independence.

Don’t take it for granted; you can lose it in an instant. If you care for someone, help them help themselves; let them do as much as they are able and willing.

As far as the secret visits to other rest homes? I’ll post one or two of these encounters in the future. You won’t want to miss those.

Happy Independence Day, everyone.

~ Janiss

Email janiss.connelly@cedarcrestsanctum.com
Twitter @JanissConnelly
Instagram @janiss.connelly
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Making Christmas Memories – Vampire Verisimilitude

Staying active physically, mentally, and spiritually are problems for today’s Seniors. Idle hands, idle minds, and idle lives. Never mind the devil and his well-documented workshop; this is an important holiday ideology.

FromTheDeskOfJanissSignaturePeople need purpose. Whether you’re starting out in life or approaching your so-called declining years, purpose fulfills us. Here’s where retirees and immortals have a lot in common: we both have a lifetime (or lifetimes) of memories haunting us. If you’re not a Vampire, those memories fade. Routine, hobbies, and memorabilia can help the elderly, but making new memories help hold onto old ones.

People need interaction. There’s nothing wrong with spending time alone — that’s a skill unto itself — but we’re social animals. Many of our residents have no other family or receive visits from relatives, so they have each and our staff. Looking forward to sharing with others provides purpose as well and keeps minds active.

People need people. I am suggesting to all of our supporters to make plans to visit with or contact your relatives, especially the ones who may not be with us much longer. Learn their stories and interact with them; you never know when they’ll be gone. The conversation is only one-way when you’re staring down at a headstone, Ebenezer.

Just think of me as three Christmas spirits rolled into one. With fangs.

Don’t wait. Get involved. Make memories.

This is what immortality is supposed to be: being remembered.

No one should need to seek out a Vampire for that.

Merry Christmas, everyone — and keep each other safe.

~ Janiss

Email janiss.connelly@cedarcrestsanctum.com
Twitter @JanissConnelly
Instagram @janiss.connelly

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