As we approach the ends of our lives, I think most of us desire some form of peace. What that looks like will be different for everyone, of course. For some people, peace genuinely means an absence of conflict. They want to be surrounded by harmony and, perhaps (though not necessarily) quiet. Others don’t mind a little conflict. What they mean by peace has to do with relative financial security and the ability and freedom to spend their time as they choose. Still others think of peace primarily in terms of physical comfort; they want to be in a place where their needs are attended to and to not spend their final years in pain or worrying about day-to-day necessities.
At Immanuel, we strive to help our residents find peace in whatever way is most important to them. At the Immanuel Skilled Care Center, this means offering private rooms with private bathrooms to the majority of residents, regardless of who pays their bills. This allows residents the peace of their own private space to use how they need and want to, whether that’s reading a book in silence or watching a TV show that others around them don’t enjoy. It also allows them to entertain their visitors on their own schedules without worrying about disturbing someone else’s peace.
Residents move into Immanuel Lutheran Communities for all kinds of reasons. Especially for independent residents, one of those reasons is that they want the peace of knowing that someone else is taking care of day-to-day maintenance tasks. Snow and ice is always a possibility during Flathead Valley winters, and when it inevitably arrives, the maintenance team does a great job of keeping sidewalks and parking lots clear and safe. And when they can’t quite keep pace with the winter weather (because in the Flathead, it can be relentless), they and other team members let residents know what areas are safe and which ones will be soon. Residents have both the peace of not having to shovel or arrange for someone else to do it and the peace of knowing they’ll be as safe as possible when they do choose to go outside.
Of course, peace might also mean having people around you who care that you have ways to spend your time that are pleasant and enjoyable for you. Across campus, our recreation teams plan full calendars of activities. Many residents find peace in knowing that, by the first day of a new month, they will have the schedule for the whole month. That way, they can plan their days and make sure they don’t miss out on their favorite fun events. They have the peace of knowing that that staff care not only about their physical wellbeing but also about their emotional wellbeing, happiness, and pleasure. For many residents, the spiritual services and pastoral care available every day at Immanuel contribute significantly toward their experience of peace.
No matter what kind of peace a resident desires, at Immanuel, we strive to help them find it. When you give to the resident care fund, you too help residents find peace. You also help Immanuel find peace by helping to close the gap between what Medicaid pays and what it costs to offer services like private rooms. By becoming part of our community of donors, you, too can give the gift of peace this holiday season.