RESIDENT BLOG: Making the best of a tough time
Since living here at Colville Court, I have made so many friends and have thoroughly enjoyed participating in many activities from art, ceramics to Tai Chi. I am also a writer, so I also joined the creative writing classes. The classes were so great and very well-organised that I left feeling invigorated and being excited for next week’s class.
It was not always like that for me. When I arrived at Colville Court over a decade ago, my confidence was low and had feelings of apprehension when I attended my very first activity. But the residents at Colville were so pleasant and welcoming that my feelings of apprehension and lack of confidence disappeared.
However, when Covid-19 and the lockdowns began, activities came to an end for me as I had to self-isolate. I felt so deflated as I needed my freedom of being with my friends in attending the activities together. Attending online activities was a bit limiting as being deaf and the wearing of face masks makes it very difficult for me as I can lip read, but I cannot do this when people are wearing masks. So, I have kept myself busy with creating my own activities and fun. This included reviving my old knitting hobby and knitting a blanket for a hospital baby unit and for my unborn great granddaughter too.
I also assisted the Colville staff in collecting donations for the Poppy Appeal and for the three residents who sadly passed away in February. I further assisted in distributing Christmas presents at Colville Court.
Being able to assist the staff and keeping contact with my good friends at Colville (while socially distancing) has really helped and they have given me great support during the lockdowns. But my number one supporter is my daughter. She is my hero and helps me everyday and we love each-others company.
Here is a poem I wrote that encapsulates being together with your loved ones and creating new memories once again:
“Me Without You”
When I grow old; what am I talking about I am old.
Thought I would have you by my side, but someone had other plans.
Still, after all the heartache I think I have come out the other side enjoying
Family and friends together, growing older.
With the memories I have and the ones yet to make.
I know things are gradually getting better and during these difficult times I have thought of ways of participating in activities where I could and keeping myself busy with my own activities. Having activities and looking for the joy in everyday is a way of making the best of a bad deal.
When lockdown is lifted, I can’t wait to breakout and have a party!
Janet Ikin, Resident of Colville Court, Teddington
Towards the end of 2020, C&C interviewed 250 residents to gauge their views on loneliness and isolation. From this we produced a report packed full of practical solutions for managing these emotions. You can read the full report at ccht.org.uk/winter-watch.