Home for the Holidays

[December 2020 | By Eva Veitch, Region 10 Community Living Services Program Director]

As we prepare to find a way to celebrate the December holidays and kiss 2020 goodbye many of us will find ourselves with empty seats at the table. Some because the pandemic has taken loved from us; others because we are trying to keep it from taking them from us. It has been a very difficult year, politically, with natural disasters, fires, and the pandemic with everything that it brings with it. Although our older generation has experienced some of these things in the past; none of us has experienced the cumulative magnitude of these things until 2020, let us hope we never do again!

How can we salvage the holidays?

I challenge you and your families to reach out to the older adults in your circle and beyond and wrap them in love. Do the little things that make their lives easier like shovel their sidewalks, bake extra cookies, deliver a home-cooked meal or just call to say hello on a regular basis. Sing Christmas carols in the neighborhood or outside the local nursing home. Volunteer as a family at the food bank or homeless shelter and involve your children. Get the whole family onboard to plan something every week that spreads love and brings someone joy.

Declare December 2020 Random Acts of Kindness Month!

Do something nice for your favorite worker at the grocery store, take cookies to the assisted living for the staff, take a coffee gift card to the post office workers, buy donuts for the fire department. Smile and say hello to every person you pass, thank people, try to offer compliments. Purchase some inexpensive fast-food gift cards and give them to children. Get creative with your kindness and have fun, it feels so good to do something for others with no expectation of anything in return!

Let us see if we can end 2020 feeling a little bit better about ourselves and our contributions to the happiness of others. We have nowhere to go but UP!!!