Aged care and the whole assisted living industry is polarizing, with some people wholesomely supporting it and others fiercely against it. To be sure, there are many different types and qualities of nursing homes, and the one you go to has a great impact on the quality of life you will have while there.
The idea behind a nursing home is simple: you get full care and nurses that cater to your needs all the time. On the downside, you don’t get to do the stuff you used to do for yourself when you lived alone. It might also feel a little lonely being away from your family. On the plus side, you don’t have to do your own chores anymore, and you get to be part of a new community and make new friends.
To get a candid account of the conditions in a nursing home, we decided to talk to a nursing home resident. Susan Cook, 79, lives at The Gracewood Centre nursing home in Kellyville, New South Wales. She’s been there for about nine months now and says that it is one of the best experiences she has had in her life. We had a conversation with her on her experience at the nursing home, and here is some of that conversation.
I was living all alone in my home, and I was having little accidents, falling all by myself. I have very brittle bones, so I was afraid of breaking them. I had to consider a nursing home. My children were very supportive and wanted me to live with them, but I didn’t want to be an extra burden. I thought the best idea would be to go to a nursing home where I would meet new people and have a good time with other people like me.
I was welcomed by everyone. The staff and residents here are an absolute joy. When I met my roommate, I decided to look for our similarities, which were many. We were about the same age, have the same interests and love the same card games. I also love helping her out since she has slightly advanced dementia.
Yes, there are lots of activities at the nursing home. We play lots of games, including bridge, bingo and dominoes. We also sing and have occasional cooking classes and cookouts. I loved cooking when I lived at home, so I was elated to find plenty of it here.
Yes, I have made plenty of friends. I fare a little better health-wise than most of them, so I like to visit their beds and try to cheer them up with some music and casual conversation. I know how lonely it can feel when you’re bedridden, so I always love to encourage them. I feel like it’s my mission to bring as much happiness to my fellow residents as I can.
I say choose your nursing home well. Use a nursing home service that helps you pick out the best nursing home for you based on your location and your needs. Once you get one, have fun. A good nursing home isn’t somewhere people go to die but to live some of the best years of their life.