Sunday, November 11, 2012

Silver Polishing with Seniors - Updated

I am so excited to write that the senior who I invited to do silver polishing last week (the previous post) repeated the work on Friday.

Before lunch, I had to make a quick run to the photocopy store, so I decided, as I was already out and about, to stop at a local thrift store in the same neighborhood. I wanted to find a pair of silver candlesticks for the seniors to publish. Instead, I found a large, silver plated bowl for $2.00.

I returned to The Bridge in time to assist with lunch. After lunch, the senior who I had introduced the silver tray to earlier in the week began to wander.  I drew her attention to the tarnished bowl. She had the silver polishing tray at a table, with the bowl, minutes later.

She looked at the small container of polish I had on the tray and said, "Ok. This is funny. Now give me the whole jar of polish so I can get my work done."

I had prepared the tray with child-sized containers, an old habit. I gave her the polish and she gave me a smile. She put on the apron, but she pushed aside the underlay stating that it would get in her way.

She also added something to the materials that I thought was pretty clever. She had seen a Lazy-Susan tray on the shelf near the polishing tray and decided it would help her do her work. The Lazy-Susan tray was a great addition and I recommend it for all age use. The bowl is circular and the tray allows the one polishing to turn the object easily while its on the tray. It really works well.

I moved back and forth - from sitting with her and listening to her amazing dialogue about polishing, to out on the floor in the main room with the other seniors. Here are a few of her quotes.

Why do we have objects of beauty if we do not take care of and appreciate them?

I always told my husband that if we get anything silver, we are going to care for it and polish it and we did. 

It's hard to remove the old to see the new. 

I am not a lover of gold, but I sure love silver. 

When she finished working on the bowl, she worked on it for more than an hour, she took it to the sink that the seniors use and washed/wiped away the remaining polish. She was visibly proud of her work. After she raised it up in her hand and let it simply shine, she gave it to one of her senior peers and they ooohed and ahhhhed about it. It was passed from hand to hand so that all of the seniors could appreciate it.

Next, she cleaned up all of the materials and returned them to the shelf. It was gratifying to watch it all happen and for me to simply be an observer.

1 comment:

Teresa said...

This post made me smile : ) It' so cool to see seniors getting a sense of achievement and contribution that they lose as they get older and less independent.