Molly’s life leading to lockdown
Molly, the face of our Trust We Care campaign tells us about her fascinating life that went before her move to the vibrant OSJCT community.
93-year-old Molly has been the face of our Trust We Care campaign in which she says she has been ‘blessed’ to be cared for so well. The resident tells us about her fascinating life that went before her move to the vibrant OSJCT community. “I can’t think of a place you’d be better cared for than here,” says Molly. “You can sit back and let everyone else do the worrying.
“They [the care team] are lovely. We are all very blessed to be cared for so well. They don’t just do a job; they come, and they care for you and always with a smile.”
Molly, who has four grandchildren and six great grandchildren, was born in Cheddar, Somerset before moving to Chepstow in Monmouthshire, at the age of six. She grew up there and joined Barclay’s bank at the age of 16 before marrying in 1949. In 1955 she accompanied her husband to Nairobi as the first of three memorable RAF postings. Molly has fond memories of her time as an RAF serviceman’s wife, also living in Kenya, Norway and Singapore.
Molly explains that Nairobi was the perfect temperature, and abundant in food whilst much of the world was affected by rationing. A scary moment came when the family, on a night fishing trip, came across a roaring hippo, but they escaped. Norway was memorable for severe winter conditions and the opportunity to learn to ski. Molly also loved Singapore, where they lived for three years. Although the first six months were very tough as Molly hated the heat and humidity, once she had acclimatised it became a firm favourite.
Living in an OSJCT care home
Each day starts with breakfast and residents can choose to have meals in their room or communally. Prior to the Covid-19 restrictions, Molly would usually have breakfast in the dining room and join others for a chat.
Individual pastimes include doing a crossword in the newspaper and knitting for premature babies in the local maternity unit. During the Covid-19 restrictions Molly and other residents have been safely enjoying entertainment by care team staff by staying in their room doorways, or occasional socially distanced activities in the lounge or hall. Popular games at the home are dominoes, Scrabble, dropping monkeys and singing.
Molly lives on a corridor with several other residents. One lady is 100 years old but mobile and active. A husband and wife have rooms on either side of the corridor and the husband has a mini organ which he plays for others to sing along to.
Molly also joins another resident for poetry reading; a volunteer joins them (now via Skype) to read a poem and spend some time analysing it. The session lasts for 90 minutes. Molly said: “It’s so interesting, it brings poems to life.”
Another fun activity is a 25-minute exercise session, led by Alex, the activities coordinator. He leads exercises for residents starting from their heads and moving through the whole body, down to their toes. Molly said: “He exercises every little bit of us. It’s quite tiring and he makes it fun. We all feel great when we’ve finished and then Alex brings us a drink.”
Molly said: “They help us to find the time (and activities) to make life go easily and enjoyably.”
She added: “I miss sitting in the garden lounge, being among more people. There was always something going on. I look forward to going into the garden lounge again, and the garden, which is very lovely, well planted.”
Molly takes an interest in the bird feeder at her window and is regularly visited by two pigeons, a robin and a sparrow. She is also a great fan of Her Majesty the Queen. “I love the Queen. I think she is the most wonderful lady.”
Resident trips outside before Covid-19 lockdown
OJSCT care homes usually run a programme of trips and visits for residents to enjoy, currently interrupted by Covid-19 restrictions. Molly said: “They organise wonderful trips, I’m in a wheelchair and we go in groups of six for coffee and cake, or lunch after a visit somewhere. I’m looking forward to these again. Anywhere outside is lovely.”
Molly joined trips to see the lights at Longleat which she described as ‘wonderland’; a ride on the canal and visits to chalk white horses on hillsides nearby.
Care at OSJCT
Care at an OSJCT care home is individual to each resident. When Molly first arrived, a carer taking note of Molly’s daughter’s concerns, arranged for Molly to have a hearing test. Molly now wears a hearing aid. Each morning someone checks that Molly is wearing it.
This care and consideration makes a big difference to Molly. She said: “When I first came in, she (a carer) took such great care of me. I can hear much better now.”
Molly has advice for anyone considering a care home. She said:
“If you have the need, from age, infirmity or lack of family support, any problems at all; do not be afraid to come in. The relief, shaking your shoulders and not having to worry; you know you will be cared for. It’s done cheerfully.”