It only seems fitting that the birth of my new blog, “The Purple Jacket” should begin on my 54th birthday! You might ask “Why the ‘Purple Jacket?”
“The Purple Jacket” signifies a time in my life that was… and still is…”a life changing event.” We have all had life changing events. Those events often forged from a life crisis are the types of events that fundamentally change our outlook on life and cause us to pause and reflect on our true values. At the time, these life changing event are or can be extremely traumatic. However, these events test our values and often have a cathartic or cleansing effect whereby we emerge from these events stronger and more focused on our values.
My life changing event came when I became a caregiver for my close friend Fr. Richard Orlando. My experiences as a caregiver for Fr. Richard Orlando caused me to rethink and reconsider what it means to live and die with dignity. This photo is his last Outing at Butterfly World with the staff and members of the Noble A. McArtor Adult Day Care Center in Ft. Lauderdale. The dedicated staff at the Noble A. McArtor Adult Day Care definitely eased the pain associated my life changing event by empowering Fr. Richard Orlando to live his final days with great humor, peace and dignity.
“The Purple Jacket” will focus on living life in a calm and peaceful manner. It will focus on the individual and about how Seniors can live a full life on their own terms. The conversations will often include discussion of our personal networks of family and friends. These conversations will often be about developing long-lasting relationships based on honesty, sincerity and personal integrity consistent with our values.
In “The Purple Jacket,” we will often talk about the role of the caregiver in maintaining the independence, dignity and quality of life of the Senior. We will discuss how the caregiver can be a more effective advocate for the Senior and will deliver information that every Senior, caregiver and family needs to know when discussing these issues. The blog will also discuss how fellowship, the community and even the arts assisted me with my life changing event. In the end, “The Purple Jacket” will share my experiences and insights as a caregiver, as a professional REALTOR® and as member of the arts community (including my current stint as the President of the Gateway Men’s Chorus).
Why this blog? Why now? While my dear friend Fr. Richard Orlando has been gone now for 5 years, the experience of acting as his caregiver made a lasting impact on me and the lessons learned still hold a central and prominent place in my life. This blog will attempt to translate and build upon my care giving experience. You will not be inundated with mundane statistics. Rather, this blog will focus on every day issues we face in our lives and the need to develop honest relationships and a holistic approach to good health and spirituality.
I am happy to have you share in this journey and hope that you regularly return to read “The Purple Jacket.”
Keep in touch with me at Chris@thepurplejacket.com