One of the things of which I am most proud, is the Regency level of compassion. I cannot overstate this and this is indeed a focal point of our admissions department. Every now and then I receive an email from a family member commenting on one of my blogs with incredulity. They wish to know when I have time to come up with ideas for these postings and how it is that I can zero in on the smallest nuances which showcase the Regency level of care and commitment.
The answer to the latter is that it is all learned by example from our Regency Founder and President who has inculcated in his employees the drive towards achieving excellence without compromise. This philosophy of going the extra mile permeates everything we do here at Regency. When department heads bend down to pick up a piece of lint from the carpet, it is because this is what the President would do and what he therefore expects from every employee.
The answer to the former is typically when I run!
Sunday is often my day for a long run during which time I have the opportunity to ponder Regency Nursing highlights. Some friends of mine participated in a 55-100 mile bicycle race for charity in N.Y.C. yesterday. The race started at the Intrepid museum on the West Side highway and wound its way over the GWB and into Jersey. They were gone for many hours. These same guys typically run with me but opt to bike these days because cycling causes far less strain on the body than running which provides endless shock and abuse to exoskeletal system.
I don’t do biking and my schedule is far too erratic to devote the necessary prep time to biking. Running is far easier you simply lace up and hit the road.
So yesterday I wound up running alone, which helps with my Regency musings. I went out for a 17.5 mile run (a bit over two hours from start to finish) and I thought about the following illustration of the Regency level of compassion. It is a small vignette that speaks volumes.
Over the weekend, I was watching my kids play football on the front lawn with a bunch of kids from the neighborhood. Their ages were from about 6 to 11 years. I watched them designate two captains for each team, who then proceeded to select their desired players from the pool of kids. The kids were standing around quietly watching and waiting and wanting more than anything to be chosen at the top of the heap and not be humiliated by being chosen last.
I couldn’t help but reflect on my childhood years going through the same selection process during recess at school.
I can still taste how I hoped with every fiber of my being to be selected amongst the first in the group and my great fear of rejection and humiliation by the captains. My sense of self and my sense of pride was dependent upon their consideration and validation. To be sure, I was a pretty decent ball player but I didn’t always get picked first either and certainly not when captains where beholden to select ‘their own.’ The feeling of rejection was so overwhelming and parents cannot fully appreciate this dynamic with their kids at school. I also felt terrible for those kids with ‘two left hands’ who were invariably chosen last and as a pure afterthought.
The most difficult part, I think, was waiting to be chosen while others were chosen first.
I thought about the juxtaposition of this with a similar (unfortunate) reality which exists in many of the nursing homes which I have visited. Sometimes ill walk into a nursing home and see residents literally lined up in wheelchairs along the hallways. This always bothered me terribly. What are these people waiting for?!
Why are the made to sit like that with nobody attending to them?! Then I realized that in many instances they are waiting to be transported back to their floors and rooms from a meal or an activity. I will look at their faces and note the strain and humiliation of watching and waiting to be chosen as others are chosen ahead of them. This illustrates a terrible lack of compassion and empathy.
These are people not widgets!
Why don’t they dedicate a few additional aids to help with their resident transports and protect and preserve the dignity of their residents!
This gives me flashbacks to the days of my youth when I waited to be chosen for the game and similarly how these kids undoubtedly felt this past weekend on my front lawn.
At Regency Nursing facilities across New Jersey, you will NEVER witness residents lined up in the hallways waiting for an elusive aid to ‘choose them’ for transport. This doesn’t happen and never will.
This small but potent vignette to illustrate our compassion is something which I should never take for granted. It is a source of tremendous pride for me personally and it is appreciated by our families every single day!
When we say that at Regency, “Caring Comes to Life,” we mean business.