Gotta Get Moving
While visiting a beautiful group home recently I was introduced to a gentleman that we will call Bob. He is a successful business man and loves the outdoors. A head trauma has changed his life as he knew it. What I noticed right away was that he seemed to have somewhere to go.
Bob was sitting in a Geri-chair wearing his favorite outdoor adventure hat and attempting to pull forward. The brakes were hindering his plan. The caregiver said,"we need to get him in a recliner quick, before he falls." I asked if we could allow him to peddle around? She agreed with much reservation, but Bob was free. He immediately peddled to the large TV where music was playing from his high school days. ( I may have had some influence on suggesting we change that to music from the soap opera that was playing:)
He listened intently and even moved his head with the rhythm of the song. Next, he moved to the back of the living room where a wall of windows let in wonderful light and a view of nature's activity. Then he peddled towards the kitchen where he bumped into a weight bearing column, and the caregiver said, "that's it. He needs to get into the recliner, right now."
The adventure was over for Bob that day, but I am hoping the caregiver was able to see the importance of allowing him to move. Even though there is a head injury or memory problem, we need to remember that these are people created to move, investigate, and learn. Their safety awareness is frequently impaired but curiosity can be driving their need to move.
It will take more work to allow this activity, but they are so worth it!