Wherever possible it's great to be able to get outdoors, connect with the seasons, and spend quality time together, whether or not we are living with dementia. But it’s not easy for everyone to get out and about. What then?
When I visit people at home I do my best to gather together a few seasonal talking points, including sprigs of rosemary which we used as hairbrushes. I’m pretty sure I read about rosemary hairbrushes somewhere. No matter. If I could take one thing to a home visit, it would definitely be a few sprigs of rosemary, no question. Always in season and readily available from many a front garden (thank you friends, neighbours and total strangers), it also happens to be a symbol of remembrance. People living with dementia may forget, but this doesn’t mean they need to be forgotten. It is such a joy to share a basket of seasonal treats - in the moment - not as a ‘test’ or ‘exercise’ so much as an invitation to look, to touch, and to listen.
It’s a bit tricky to see in the photo, but I often take along a little speaker so we can listen to some birdsong together, to give more of an outdoor feel to a heated home which gives no sense of the season.
(Reflection written in February 2019)