Yesterday I had the chance to explain my project to my grandpa. When working with any adult client, it’s important to obtain their consent and even though this “client” is my own grandpa, I want to make sure he’s on board and willing to put in the effort because he can be very stubborn sometimes!
First, I asked my grandpa what he ate for lunch that day. He attempted to say something which I didn’t understand. After several attempts, he shook his head as he often does when communication breakdown occurs. I took a piece of paper, drew 4 boxes, and wrote some options out for him: chicken, rice, noodles, something else. I showed him the piece of paper and asked him the question again and told him to point to what he wanted to say. He pointed to the rice. “See, wasn’t that much easier when you had options in front of you that you could just point to? Now I know what you had for lunch yesterday!” I explained that the communication book I was going to make for him would include words, photos, and pictures that he could use to communicate with friends, family members, and workers at his assisted-living facility. He nodded his head. I said I would also train him how to use the book. Again, he nodded his head.
I am eager to get this communication book into my grandpa’s hands as soon as possible. One great thing about this project is that it’s meeting a highly personal need and I’m excited to see the difference it’s going to make in my grandpa’s quality of life. Stay tuned as I document the journey 🙂