KCTV5 produced a video segment about The Piper that ran on its KCLive show! Watch the interview segment below to hear what residents have to say about life at The Piper.
If you are searching for an Assisted Living or Memory Care community for the first time, you might not be sure where to begin. The best option is to get out and tour and ask as many questions as possible. This process will help you understand what it’s like to live in each community and what the differences are.
Here’s a list to get you started. Feel free to print it out and take it with you!
- Will you pay for my move?
- Is there a community fee or buy in?
- Is the staff consistent in the area I live?
- Will I miss breakfast if I sleep in?
- Are there set times for meals?
- What happens if I don’t like what’s being served for lunch?
- If I want to go shopping, can someone take me?
- If I want to garden, can I do that?
- What happens if I need more assistance in the future? For example, if I need 2 people to help me move from my chair to my bed. Do I have to move?
- Is there a schedule for bathing?
- Can a family member stay over if they visit?
From the KU Alzheimer’s Disease Center
Caring for a loved one with dementia can be quite stressful. It is important to take care of yourself emotionally and physically, both for your own sake and for your loved one. Taking care of yourself can help to avoid burnout, illness, and depression. It isn’t easy to be a full or part time caregiver, but here are some tips to keep yourself healthy:
- Ask other people for help with your caregiving duties, especially family and close friends.
- Take breaks throughout the day.
- Make sure to find time to spend doing things you enjoy. participate actively in hobbies.
- Join a support group. It can help to talk to people going through similar challenges.
- If you have spiritual needs, you can attend church, temple, or mosque for extra support.
- Focus on your physical health by exercising, eating healthy foods, and visiting your doctor for routine check-ups.
To stay emotionally healthy, you can remind yourself of these things:
- You’re doing the best you can.
- It is hard for everyone to be a caregiver.
- You’re not perfect and that is okay.
- You can’t control all circumstances.
- You are allowed to and should take time for yourself.
- When it becomes more than you can handle, you should get help.
It’s normal to feel frustrated, angry, and guilty through this emotional journey, and it can be hard for many caregivers to ask for help. You don’t have to go through this alone, and there are many resources out there to help lessen the emotional burden. You can ask friends and family for help with specific tasks, such as spending some time with the person with Alzheimer’s out of the home, or preparing a meal for you. If you are needing an extended break, you might consider a respite stay at a memory care community. You can learn more about respite care at The Piper by calling 913-400-7006. The University of Kansas Alzheimer’s Disease Center has support groups for caregivers of those with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. For more information call 913-588-0555 or visit us at www.kualzheimer.org
The Piper is committed to serving those living with Alzheimer’s and is a Community Partner with KU Alzheimer’s Disease Center, which conducts research for an improved treatment and cure for the disease.
Casey Goes To Bat At The Piper
Yes, pitcher Casey Barnes was on the Kansas City (KS) T-Bones disabled list in 2015 after catching a sizzling line drive with his bare hand, injuring a thumb.
No, that is not why he moved into The Piper Assisted Living and Memory Support for the 2016 baseball season.
“It’s a gorgeous place … really great people … food is awesome … I couldn’t be happier,” explains the 28-year-old right-hander, back on the mound in full form with a respectable 3.13 ERA this season.
His home is in Tempe, AZ, so he must find local lodging when he joins his team in Kansas City from May to September. Last year, he lived with a host family. This year, he asked the T-Bones management for an apartment. Having just teamed up with The Piper, the T-Bones offered him assisted living.
He was taken aback, initially: “I mean, my grandpa is in assisted living,” he says. “But then I thought, let’s roll and see how it plays out.”
He’s glad he did. “I walk in and am blown away – I have my own little apartment furnished with a TV and couch, a washer and dryer, and I’m like, holy smokes, this is awesome!”
Bringing Casey to bat is part of The Piper’s game plan to connect elders with people of all ages and backgrounds, says Coletta Hummel, Director of Community Relations. “Residents are very engaged with Casey. He has made fast friends with quite a few people living here who are excited to see him pitch,” she says.
Though the team’s rigorous schedule keeps Casey on the road much of the time, he enjoys hanging out with residents when he is home at The Piper. “They’re really sharp people,” he says. Like Lou, a WWII veteran. “My grandpa is a WWII vet, and Lou reminds me of him. I tease Lou all the time and he gives it right back to me,” says Casey.
In the community where his grandpa lives in Arizona, one day is pretty much like the next. “But when I’m at The Piper, it brings a different dynamic to the residents,” Casey says.
He has met several baseball fans at The Piper, like the resident who wears that crummy old St. Louis Cardinals baseball cap – “I finally got him a T-Bone cap so he can stop wearing it,” Casey says. He’s also working on hooking the household television sets to the internet so residents can watch T-Bone games, which are rarely televised on the networks.
His 6-foot, 180-pound frame is well fueled on The Piper fare. Though he can cook in his apartment, he usually prefers to eat in the household kitchen with residents. “Eggs, bacon, French toast, breakfast sandwiches, pancakes, turkey, broccoli, rice and beans, grilled chicken – they take care of me, no doubt about it,” Casey says.
But skip the shrimp. “I’m not very picky, but one time they had seafood, so I said to (homemaker) Lena (Hummel), ‘Sorry, I don’t like seafood.’ She says, ‘So, what do you want?’ And she fixes me a nice little chicken stir fry with veggies … just awesome!”
His parents have visited and dined with the residents, and sometimes he invites a lucky teammate to dinner in the household. Once Mills Clark, a homemaker and dessert specialist, made several dozen mini cheesecakes for Casey to take back to the clubhouse. “Our team ate the whole batch that night,” he says.
His experience at The Piper has dispelled his preconceptions about assisted living. “I told my parents that Grandpa needs this, and that I hope I end up in a place like this when I’m at that age,” he says.
For now, he says, living at The Piper “takes the stress off of me as a player, because I don’t have to worry about anything.”