Anna Honyiglo Suchomelova, Psychologist at the Sainte Germaine House, of Sisters Hospitallers in Paris (France), tells us about the experience lived in our center during the health crisis caused by the pandemic of COVID-19.
We have just lived through an exceptional period, difficult and, at the same time, rich in experiences.
On the one hand, for us professionals, for whom this period has been a great load of work and emotions. On the other hand, for our residents, who have had to adapt without being able to really prepare for the great changes in their daily lives. For many of them, this meant a long period without being able to visit their loved ones, their families, without being able to spend time with sisters, friends, volunteers…
I am proud of my colleagues and our residents
We have mobilized through our professions to guarantee our residents a bearable and lively daily life, despite what little chance we have left. We launched several activities that they could do in their rooms or, later, when possible, in small groups. I could see that some residents, who were usually reluctant to participate in the activities, were enthusiastic about those proposals during this period of confinement. I would say that, for some, this peculiar context has allowed them to rediscover their old passions, which had been somewhat forgotten over time.
The resilience of our residents during this pandemic, who have been strong throughout these difficult times, continually impressed me throughout the time of the confinement. They were able to adapt to a completely new living environment and the conditions imposed by this epidemic more easily than they had imagined.
Of course, we have also experienced complex situations and difficult days. I think that somehow this period has brought us together. I have seen each other support each other in the most difficult moments. I have also observed the gratitude of our residents, and this has restored our strength, even when fatigue was present.
Professionals and residents have lived this period together, each with their fears and concerns… Today, the situation is changing and we are gradually returning to our old ways. At the end of this period and with my sights set on the beautiful days to come, I am honest when I say that I am extremely proud of my colleagues and our residents.