A Birthday Party!

I always love visiting NY. Just something about touching down and crossing the line into the ‘516’. Is it a sense of home? Of family? Not sure since I’m a FL girl…but either way I enjoy it. I like to say I’m NY born and FL bred.

Anywho, this most recent trip to Long Island was no exception although I was there for less then 24 hours. I never stepped foot into NYC except to fly out of LGA, but I had a full plethora of experiences during my short visit. I ate White Castle (a must) sat in rush-hour traffic on Grand Central Pkwy, got cut off by a cab or two, and even ran for a delayed, re-directed flight – with a layover in another time zone – before flying home.

But my favorite was the Birthday Party!

Yep, my Grandmother and I attended a “birthday party”! All of the neighbors and their guests were invited. Seems it wasn’t anyone’s exact birthday but nonetheless there was a cool DJ, balloons, cake and “dancing”! We swayed to the tunes of Michael Jackson, BeeGees, and Stevie Wonder; the music could be heard down the hall and even outside a bit. Most of the residents attended and the room was packed.

So what was so special about this party? It was special in that it was held at the newly renovated Five Towns Premier Rehab and Nursing Facility and included the nursing facility residents. It wasn’t a mandatory event, but it was definitely heavily attended. As the residents have varying levels of health and mobility, not everyone could come on their own. But those that could, wheeled themselves while others required assistance from the staff or a visiting family member. But everyone was making their way to the party. At the party and while the music played, many snapped their fingers, clapped, or danced in their seats; some smiled and swayed to the beat while singing along quietly; and others simply enjoyed the time and company, likely remembering their younger, more active dancing days.

But all appeared to be absorbed in the activities. There existed an overall good feeling in the place.

I can’t say why specifically, but it did my heart so good to see these ladies and gentlemen getting their enjoyment on; to see how the nurses and other staff members enjoyed the time with them, snapping along, dancing a little and cheerfully passing out cake and juice (which my Grandmother for one welcomed with a smile). Some of the staff even passed out a few hugs or a pat on the shoulder — for these folks with whom I’m sure they spend a good portion of their days. The residents in attendance truly seemed to be enjoying the well-deserved light-hearted afternoon that had been prepared for them on this nice summer day …. and I was proud to spend my day sitting and enjoying it with them. My Grandma and I stayed for over an hour, before heading outside for some fresh air and a little us-time.

Thinking back, I am in awe of, and I must wonder at the wealth of history, wisdom and experience that was in that room. We should all be so lucky to live long enough to follow their suit.

I took a few photos to remember and share my experience.

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