This might be the first year that your parent or loved one is in assisted living during the holiday season. For the family who is accustomed to celebrating together, the change can be difficult or depressing.
Don’t put the holidays on hold just because your Dad’s address changed. Even if your brothers, sisters, and other family members choose to do something else, make sure you spend time with your father.
Yes, he may have suffered a stroke which changed his personality and his physical capabilities. But he is still your Dad, and being together during the holidays is so very important to your relationship — even if the actual way you celebrate will look different than in years past.
Here are some tips for celebrating the holidays in assisted living:
- Start a new tradition. Instead of being sad that things can’t be the way they used to be, come up with an idea for a new family tradition, like caroling within the assisted living community or watching a favorite holiday movie together.
- Bring the celebration there. If your Mom’s apartment is too small, many communities have common areas, private dining rooms, or other spaces for families to gather.
- Make arrangements to bring your parent or loved one to your home for the holidays. Even if it means securing a wheelchair van or having to administer Dad’s medications, do what it takes to have him be part of the day’s events.