Friday, June

The Power of Creativity

When at first you look at this necklace, it doesn’t appear extraordinary … although it’s just lovely in it’s simplicity – it certainly isn’t unusual. Read on to learn why it is so special …

Lottie with Alzheimer's disease still created the extraordinary necklace

Lottie is 82 years old.  In addition to suffering from breast cancer, she is in the advanced stages of Alzheimer’s disease.  She lives with her grandson, but recognizes him only about 25% of the time.  When he brings her to class, she has not once appeared to remember the instructor or why she is there.   She is usually confused and disoriented, often insisting that she must “go fix supper” or “get to the chores.”  It’s usually a real challenge to get her to sit down at the table with the rest of the class.

But ….the very instant she sits down and sees the boxes of findings and beads, she immediately comes into focus!  Instantly!  She picks out all the pieces she likes, selects perfectly matching beads, gets the proper tools together and away she goes! 

During her second visit, she asked the instructor to show her how to “make the beads stay on those little wires.” She was shown just the one time.  She sat quietly and practiced for about an hour, then the very next week she came in and made the necklace pictured- without any prompting or instruction from anyone!

To her grandson’s knowledge, she has never made jewelry before.  He is completely baffled at how clearly she has grasped this … in fact he says he’s consulted with around five different “specialists” recently, trying to find an explanation for this phenomenon … that the same woman who can’t remember what to do with a fork or spoon can put together an intricate piece of jewelry!

This story was sent to me by Willie Zuniga who teaches jewelry classes as a diversion for cancer patients.

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