My Mom, “Little Ania,” as she is affectionately called by the Sisters and Staff of St. Joseph’s, became a treasured resident of St. Joseph’s on January 17, 2020. I will be forever grateful to the Sisters and Staff of St. Joseph’s for the loving, caring, and devotion that they give so freely and tirelessly to my Mom. Little Ania has a tendency to be a little “spunky” at times and does not like to be told what to do. The Sisters and Staff handled her so beautifully. I believe they enjoyed her little bit of feisty behavior and would relay the stories back to me with a little giggle.
The activities at St Joseph’s were ongoing throughout the day and there were parties what seemed like every weekend. The sense of peace that I got while visiting there was wonderful. One Sunday I was visiting my mother and we were in her room when I began to hear the most beautiful singing voices coming through the speakers. I learned that it was the Sisters in the Chapel who were singing lamentations during the Lenten season. It was awesome. I will never forget that moment.
Then on March 13, 2020, the Coronavirus struck. For the next 12 days my mother, who by the way was about to turn 98 in 4 weeks, was doing very well. Then on March 25 the State comes in and whisks her away on a bus without separating the symptomatic and the non-symptomatic residents. One week later when I make a call to the facility they tell me that my mother tested positive for Covid-19. At 97 my mother tests positive for the virus and now at 98, she is a survivor of the virus.
On April 21, 2020, my Mom returned to St. Joseph’s. Little Ania had survived the virus but now she had to be nursed back to health. Our family never doubted that she was NOW getting the BEST care possible and we were so very grateful that she made it back to St. Joseph’s.
During the days and months that followed the Sisters were very vigilant about keeping their family safe. The Sisters also did everything to make sure the hearts and souls of their family were nourished. This past January the sisters made a snowman, dressed him up, put him on a cart, and brought him inside to visit with each one at their door. There was even extra snow on the cart so they could make a snowball while Frosty the Snowman was playing in the background. (Check it out on YouTube) Just one example of putting a smile on the face of their loved ones. I could go on and on with examples of their ingenuity but I would have to turn this into a book.
Who Needs Disney World when we have St. Joseph’s Sisters and Staff !!!!!
On April 10th Little Ania will turn 99. She is a little less spunky and a little less feisty but doesn’t let her quiet and shy demeanor fool you. If Little Ania doesn’t like something or doesn’t want to do something she will let you know. Little Ania does not need a lot of words or a loud voice to get her point across…it is all in the tone.
If you want to pick Little Ania out of the crowd, just look for the little pretty blue-eyed lady with the rosary beads in her hand. She is never ever without her rosary beads. I once asked my Mom, “who are you praying for all the time?” She responded, “me, so I don’t die.” Then she giggled.
May God Bless Us All,
Little Ania‘s Daughter,
Watch Little Ania in action: