By Cindy Terlouw

One year ago after a short hospital stay, we brought our dear mother to a nursing home facility in the town where she was born and raised.  The doctors informed us that she was very fragile due to conditions surrounding congestive heart failure.

After 66 years of marriage and having never spent time away from our father, we knew that this separation would be both difficult and filled with anxiety.

Since family has always been our mother’s primary focus and knowing that her life was coming to a close, we used pictures as a tool for remembering and celebrating her life.

On the wall directly across from her bed, we arranged a large collage of pictures—family trips, weddings, graduations, grandchildren and more.  Our Mom has always loved pictures, so we knew that the pictures would be a source of great joy and comfort.

Every day she comments on a picture that reminds her of a special memory which gives her joy and adds meaning to her life.  It has also given an opportunity for both nursing staff and visitors to begin conversations with our mother about her life.  When her grandchildren come to visit, they add a picture to her wall continuing the meaningful story of her precious life.

A picture is indeed worth a thousand words.  Consider building a “Wall of Memories” for your loved one.



Karen Mulder

Karen Mulder

Karen Mulder is the founder of the Wisdom of the Wounded ministry. She lives in Holland, Michigan with her husband Larry.


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