How to stay close to your loved ones during the pandemic?
We were looking forward to the holidays to get together as a family and celebrate with the ones close to us. The pandemic unfortunately decided otherwise and we are again separated from our loved ones. In this time of festivities, kisses and hugs, the recent restrictions must be applied. This affects the morale of our seniors who find themselves stuck alone at home or in a retirement home.
Visavie reminds you that it is crucial to respect the physical distancing measures required by the Government of Quebec. However, that shouldn’t stop you from staying in touch with those close to you. We share with you some tips to get closer to your elders, while of course maintaining a safe (and necessary!) distance.
The most basic: the telephone
It’s easy to forget that the smartphone isn’t just a texting tool. You can also use it to talk with the seniors of your family. Now more than ever, we need to take the time to phone our parents and grandparents who are isolated because of the coronavirus (COVID-19). We can and must find the time! Even if it’s just a brief “hello”, you’ll certainly brighten up a (grand)-parent’s day!
No matter how long your call is – as long as you call several times a week (or even once a day if you can). You will be able to change the daily life of your elders in a positive and permanent way, by strengthening the links that unite you.
Mail in all forms
Email is now a quick and easy way to get news and share, along with recent photos and videos of your family, your growing children, or the little one who lost her first tooth. Feel free to share the important moments of your life with the elderly in your family, even from a distance, by using all the functions (photos, videos, creation of GIFs, funny photo filters) of your smartphone. If your grandma or grandpa also has a smartphone, you can even take the opportunity to play a game of Scrabble against each other, great right?
Remember, however, that your parents and grandparents are from a generation for whom sending handwritten letters was quite common. Why not have some fun sending them a surprise letter, like in the good old days? Reproducing this process would certainly give them immense pleasure. Feeling the paper in their hands, reading the handwriting of their loved ones, receiving traditional photos. They will surely share them with their friends at the retirement home or with their home help or family helper. For a brief moment of nostalgia, forget the future and relive the days of your grandparents.
Social networks with Grandma and Grandpa, yes it’s possible!
There are now several applications that allow us to see each other on the screen and communicate remotely. No matter how many people are in the simultaneous conversation and no matter where you are, it is now possible (and above all quite easy!). Imagine how fun your Christmas could be when you all got together for a nice dinner with the kids, parents and grandparents … even if it had to be through a screen!
To do this, install a video conferencing application on the device of your older relatives. They may not be used to new technologies so take the time to teach them how to use it. Do not hesitate to leave these same instructions in writing and post them on your loved one’s fridge. Take, for example, Facebook or WhatsApp apps (both free). Once installed, initiate a call in the presence of your parent, showing him how you called him and which button he will have to press to answer.
For seniors who want to explore Facebook a little more in-depth, feel free to add them to your friends’ list. They will be able to follow you every day through your photos, videos and articles that you publish on your page. This will give them a feeling of closeness, especially in this time of isolation during the Holidays.
We project ourselves into the future
After a year full of sickness, stress and loneliness, it can become difficult to project or come up with plans for the future that you really believe in. Yet that’s exactly the right thing to do! During a phone call or video conference meeting, talk to your parents and grandparents about your upcoming plans with them, your next camping vacation, Aunt Marie who will be celebrating her 95th birthday or any other another opportunity allowing you to envision a possible and bright future. Let’s see the glass half full and look forward to a future filled with hope, hugs and most of all, love.