Meeting a friend at a small, local restaurant a few days ago felt strange and wonderful. A little clumsy, too. It has been more than a year since most of us have been able to move about freely, let alone enter public spaces with others who do not live in our households.
Is it okay to hug? Is it okay to take our masks off?
According to the Centers of Disease Control (CDC) as well as our own state government, once all parties are fully vaccinated, the masks can now come off. After so many months, however, of wearing a mask to keep ourselves and those around us safe from COVID-19, it feels a little shaky to pull that protective piece of cloth away from our faces.
But still wonderful.
Seeing a friend’s smile warms the heart. Warily, we embrace in greeting. The flush of dopamine from a friendly embrace is palpable. Oh, we have needed this.
In large part, what Senior Care Partners P.A.C.E. offers is human contact. Even while assisting our participants to remain independent and able to live each in your own homes, we also ensure that no one is alone.
The importance of human contact, especially as we age, cannot be stressed enough. While medical doctors focus on our physical health, our mental and emotional health is equally—if not even more—important. Our doctors are beginning to recognize that good health refers to not just the body, but also to mind and spirit.
Countless studies and many years of research have established a connection between our emotional wellbeing and our bodies, tying together loneliness and social isolation with deteriorating physical health and a weakened immune system, an increase in the risk of depression, heart disease, cognitive deficiencies, and even early death.
Having a strong support system in our lives equates to less stress and more resilience when stressful events do happen in our lives. One of the most important functions of Senior Care Partners P.A.C.E. is to be part of your support system in life. Like extended family, our staff workers are there for you—ready to listen, ready to help, ready to just keep company when you need it most.
Even as we maintain strict guidelines on when we can and cannot remove our masks, all to keep you safe, your smiles brighten our days—and we hope ours brighten yours. Together, we have made it through one of the most difficult years in recent memory, a year of a frightening pandemic that exacted a great cost from a great many. Sharing the ups and downs have helped keep us healthy.
Then and now, we are here for you. And we cannot wait to see your smiles.