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Jean Rowley

Jean Rowley recalls The Commons as a place where family comes first

Jean Rowley, of Ithaca, NY, along with her sister Margie Stuart, of Auburn, were looking for a facility for their mother, Frances Scollan. Together, her family chose The Commons on St. Anthony for long term care. Upon her arrival, Frances was in the early stages of dementia, had suffered a broken hip, and needed a place with the finest skilled nursing care.

“Mom was living with me for a couple years in Ithaca,” Jean says. “She was with our sister, Patty, for five years before that. She also lived at a facility in Skaneateles.”

Then, Frances had a bad fall and broke her hip.

“She was brought to the hospital, and after that, we wanted her in Auburn,” Jean says. “At the time, there were four of our siblings still in here.”

“The Commons on St. Anthony is a place that anyone would want to be,” Jean says. “The remodeling is great. The silent call bell system was transformative for my mother because the bells were a constant irritant before. What a difference! They thought about all the little details like that.”

Caring for a parent with dementia can have difficult moments. There can be disorientation. Forgetfulness. Anxiety. But in September 2015, Jean had an unforgettable moment with her mother at The Commons.

“The most beautiful thing happened. My sister had bought the book Peter Rabbit. You see, my mom was more and more non-verbal as her dementia progressed, but I would read aloud to comfort her. When I began reading Peter Rabbit, I could tell she was following me and mouthing the words. I asked her if she wanted to read it to me, and she did.”

It’s never too late to make a happy memory. Especially when you’re in a comfortable environment that makes it possible.

“The Commons is warm. Caring. Supportive,” Jean says.

In her mother’s final week of life, The Commons was there for Jean and her family in so many ways.

“The nurses were great. They were very, very attentive,” Jean says. “They found a place for my mother’s roommate to stay so we had several days together in a private room. It’s so important that you have your own space in the final days, particularly when we have such a large family -- nine siblings and many grandchildren. The nurse practitioner came in and talked to us often. I’m a nurse, but when it’s your own mother, it’s a different story. We felt very comfortable and cared for.”

Jean Rowley, Ithaca, New York
Daughter of Frances Scollan, former resident at The Commons on St. Anthony

 

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