Lifelong Learning Programme

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Personal Experience

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Helenka

Helenka
Language: English
Country: Slovakia
Typology: patients and relatives
Text:
1.1 Description of the client by herself I was born in the region of Záhorie. I have two sisters and three brothers. I went to kinder garden with my brother Jožko, later we went to school together. From that school he went to an institution where my ex-classmate lived. I went to another school for 9 years. Then I stayed with my parents in Trnava. My parents did not let me go more to school. I could not be a gardener because I did not finish the elementary school. I always liked to work. I was always helping my parents with cleaning, took care of them but my mother never let me to bake. When I was 15 my mother put me to an institution in Veľký Biel, because there was not any institution in Trnava appropriate for me. My parents were ill but my dad took me home every weekend. In the institution I had one roommate. There was lot of us there, I did not like it there. The manor house was old, seedy, plaster dropped out, rooms were little. We could not go out of there, just to the garden. I often had to wash the dishes and clean vegetables in the kitchen. Now I am much better than when I was in Veľký Biel. At this Social Services Home there are nice rooms, we can go to the town, we can do various activities, we go for trips and I always have somebody to talk to. I feel better here. At this institution I had 2 good friends. With the first one we broke up, I do not even know why. And now I have the second one. I help him with clothing. Lately when he went home he put his trousers vice versa. We help each other. I can trust him. The other day he cleaned up the whole room for me and put everything as it had to be. He told me to rest when my hand hurts. I am satisfied with my roommate. We can talk together. I like cleaning at Social Services Home, I fold clothes, help weaker clients, go for walks with the other clients, paint and the activity I like the most is talking. I am not happy that I talk that much, I can stop but then I start again. I would like to find a job somewhere out of the service, but I cannot because of my hurting legs. I am glad when I can help the older and weaker people. When you meet me I will gladly talk to you and show you my room which is always clean, because I like it clean. 1.2 Experience of the client with the service I liked very much trip to Modra. We were at a cottage named Chata pod lesom. During our trip we were also in the town and were shopping. We saw there also Modra’s ceramics, which I like. I wanted to buy something but I could not because I did not have enough money. Luckily I go to ceramics classes and I can make such angels by myself. I like it. I am glad that I can go to the ceramics every week. When I model the products I put them into the furnace and then paint on them. I take those products with me and I can give them to whoever I want. The other day when we were at some event I was selling my products at the market. People looked at them and I could talk to them. Some of my products were sold. I give my products to my relatives or clients because I like them and I am happy when they admire me and my gift makes them happy. 2. Narration from the professionals point of view 2.1 Description of the client by professionals Helenka is 44 years old. She went to a special school, she has never been employed. She has been for 12 years in Social Services Home. She was diagnosed moderate mental disorder. Her cognitive functions are as follows: she cannot read, but she recognizes the letters. She can write when she has a pattern and counting causes her problems. She has difficulty to concentrate on one thing. Helenka has sometimes arm pain in the shoulder areas. Her fine motorics is influenced by a lack of her mental functions, she misses the training. Helenka can easily make new relationships. She can talk in sentences. Sometimes it is needed to explain one thing to her many times or make sure that she understood what had been said. She is very active in meeting people, she is communicative, sociable and can talk to strangers. She notices her friends, and has much information about her acquaintances. She is popular in the group. Sometimes she starts conflicts because she does not have problems to express her disagreement. She knows about it but she cannot control it. She can get angry also because of details. Often she is not sure about what is she doing. She asks whether she did it right. She decides with the help of others. Her behavior is marked by uncertainty, she always has to check her progress. Her favorite activities are dancing, listening to the music, ceramics, folding the clothes, cleaning, painting, going for walks and trips. 2.2 How did the narrative medicine help us to work with the client and to be in better contact with her On the basis of narrative medicine Helenka’s care takers helped her develop her study skills, communication and her ability to listen. We teach her to count and write. We encourage her in taking responsibility for her decisions. We do not prevent her from deciding in any situation so we empower her independence. During the communication we try to ensure whether we understood correctly each other. We ask her to repeat what we told her and we simplify information for her in order to understand. She often talks very quickly and changes subjects of the conversation. We try to respect her and find the sense in her speech. We listen to her and search for explanations of her statements so we can understand her and help her to feel understood and accepted.


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