“When Memory Fades, Sunrise Stories from Real People, by Ronda Knuth” is more than a book of stories.
When memory fades shares shares wonderful vignettes about the people she cares for at Sunrise Senior Living Community at Pinehurst in Denver, Colorado.
More than sharing short moments in their lives, Ronda describes it as the place she goes to “live out her love.”
And “loving” she is! Ronda’s love for the members of this elderly community shows through in every story.
Many residents of Sunrise Senior Living have Alzheimer’s, dementia and find it difficult to describe their own needs. The right words most often escape them.
Ronda waits, listens and discerns their heart through behavior and actions. In return she is approachable and patient as they display their emotions and feelings in ways other than speech. And when memory fades there are still memories in their feelings.
For example: Ronda knows that Renee is not worried about anything in particular but she still needs her “worry time.”
Ronda knows why Sara declares that Ronda makes her “Yellow.” In fact, Sara makes Ronda “yellow,” too, quite often.
Personally, I think I’m envious of Ronda. Not only do I wish she had been with my Mother at the Group Home where she lived the final two years of her life, I wish I had read this book 7 years prior to Mom’s last years.
Caring for those with dementia can sometimes be confusing. Often we don’t know if a frown on their face means anger at us or pain from a UTI infection.
Ronda has a keen sense of what each individual needs without any words at all. And maybe, if we slow down and take more time with an ailing loved one, many of us could do the same.
I would like to have seen my own Mom through Ronda’s eyes. Ronda sees each individual through to the heart.
You’ll laugh and you’ll cry but you’ll never forget the delightful characters from Ronda’s Stories.