HANDS DOWN

M.maffe

This image,  for me shows gentleness and acquience brought tears to the eyes of his daughter who saw fragility how the powerful hands of a granite man had become  skinny and diminished. Frailty, the invevitable changes in our bodies and minds somehow should be hidden from view to keep those younger protected from the reality of this may one be us.  Instead we push it away behind the doors of nursing homes.

In the third month of working with the residents of EHPAD(Nursing Home) Le Maillol, Lacrouzette  and EHPAD Agir, Castres. I finally realized that all these people were once my age, children and couldn’t imagine themselves residents in a nursing home some years later. Their skin was wrinkle free their memories sound, and there was energy in their step.  The homes I visit and the staff there do their best to make these places as comfortable as possible. Yet the days are filled with activities to pass the time, rather than thinking that these people may have something valuable still to contribute or want to be involved with something beyond the nursing home.

Few people except those related to the residents or those who work there go beyond the front door. See beyond the wheelchairs, wrinkles, shaky hands, and all the accessories that strike fear into those younger and healthy. I hope these images help us to open our hearts and create connections and dialogues so that old age does not remain a pitiful lonely state.

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