Touching Lives Stories
Gloria’s Story: Spreading Joy and Sharing Smiles
When Gloria had an extended stay at two local nursing homes and observed those around her, she made it her mission to spread joy and cheer to others each and every day!
Gloria lived independently in her own apartment until a series of falls left her struggling to maintain her own independence. Gloria recalls, she has had a total of 23 falls. Her family recognized she needed more support and care than she was receiving and acted quickly to ensure her safety.
Once in the nursing home, Gloria quickly realized that many of those that surrounded her were in worse condition than she was, had few visitors, and a smile among them was rare. She states, “there was so many sad and sick people, it was just heartbreaking.”
Gloria made it her mission to make everyone she interacted with smile. If you have ever received one of Gloria’s hugs, witnessed her big smile, or heard her infectious laugh you would understand the joy she brings to many.
Gloria was worried about having to live in the nursing home for the rest of her days, because before Glasswater Creek, there was no other affordable option for her. She needed a community where she could have independence with assistance as needed, the comfort and privacy of her own apartment and socialization. The community that she has built by simply sharing a meal with others amongst her and also having the reassurance for her and her family that someone is available to her any time, day or night should something occur.
Gloria has settled in at Glasswater Creek and still uses her infectious smile to provide love and cheer to all those that work and reside in the Glasswater Creek Community. She states “Living at Glasswater Creek is like a dream come true, I never would have imagined I would end up in something this beautiful. The food, the staff, the community, it’s all so beautiful and I receive such great care.”
When asked why Gloria works so hard to make others smile she stated, “I don’t even realize I am doing it. It makes me feel good to see others feel good. You can just see when someone feels joy, and if I can bring a little joy every day that will bring me joy. I feel joy by being apart of the Glasswater Creek community & I hope it spreads to each resident that lives here.”
Randall’s Story: Embracing a Dignified Lifestyle at Glasswater Creek
After being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2015, Randall underwent an extensive surgery in July 2015. Due to many complications, Randy’s health declined and what was supposed to be a short, three-night stay at the hospital, turned into three long months. Upon discharge, Randy was bedridden and spent the next 18 months that way. During that time, the strain and stress of his wife becoming his caregiver strained their marriage. They soon divorced and for the first time in a long time, Randy found himself living alone in a small apartment in September 2017. After the divorce and ongoing health deterioration, Randy began to go into a deep depression.
“I didn’t want to see people. I would keep my home dark. I would go shopping to get items if I had to at 1am in the morning to avoid everyone. My luck got worse in July of 2018, when I received a letter stating my apartment building was sold, and I had to find a new place to live by August 1, 2018. My apartment building was being condemned and tore down, and I had nowhere to go. I began to fret. Between my health conditions, lack of funds, and no real support, I didn’t know what I would do.”
“That’s when I found out about Glasswater Creek.”
“Everyone worked so hard to help me in that time of need. On August 31, 2018, I moved into Glasswater Creek. I spent the next 3-4 days unpacking and only came down for meals. One day, while coming down for meals, I realized the joy and happiness I saw amongst everyone. I wanted that too. I began to make myself come down for meals and try to sit at a new table each time. I wanted to get to know everyone and feel the same joy and happiness that they all felt. It didn’t take long at all, and I had that. For the first time since my diagnosis in 2015, I felt that I had a purpose and I belonged. The staff and residents didn’t become just friends or neighbors, but most importantly, they have become my family.”
Randy has made it his mission to help others each and every day. Randy states “I can’t say I go above and beyond for anyone. I don’t do it for them; I do it for me. It makes me feel good to know I am making a difference to others, just as Glasswater has done for me.”