Losing someone you love is always hard. And it can be especially difficult if you have dementia.
The staff at a British retirement home saw that firsthand after one of their residents lost her husband of 70 years. 93-year-old Joyce Beckett, who suffers from dementia, was distressed for several weeks while trying to cope with the loss of John, the man who meant the world to her.
Though the staff members sat by her and stroked her hand, they didn't feel like they were doing enough. That's why they went above and beyond to do more.
Chris Rayatt-Howard, the head of activities at the home, approached the Becketts' son, David, about making a "memory cushion" for his mom, made out of one of his father's favorite shirts.
After getting permission, Rayatt-Howard stitched the shirt pillow together with a pocket that held John's photo. The pillow also included a stitched note from John's perspective, reading, "This is a shirt I used to wear. Whenever you hold it know that I am there."
Posted by Richmond Village Northampton on Thursday, March 10, 2016
When Rayatt-Howard gave her the shirt, emotions ran high.
"It was one of his favorite shirts so she recognized what it was and she was very tearful," said Claire Fry, an advisor at the home.
David described the moment as "remarkable."
"I can’t believe what a lovely touch it was," he said.
Now, it remains in her room and it's always close to her.
PLUS: See some beautiful ways to honor lost loved ones in your home below.