Isn't This the Most Beautiful Party?

Ruth was sitting up in her bed, quietly clapping her hands to music no one else could hear. 

“Isn’t this the most beautiful party?”

How do you respond?  Brian and Sharon have cared for Ruth in their home for the last 12 years. They have learned to enter into Ruth’s reality, and meet her there:

“It is, Ruth! Tell me, who do you see at the party?”

“OH! So many beautiful people! My Aunt Lucy, and Grandma Rita are playing the piano! Everyone is dancing and having the most wonderful time!” Ruth’s eyes were bright with joy, her face more animated than it had been in days.

“Enjoy your party and say hello to Grandma Rita for me!” Sharon replied. “Brian and I are going away for the weekend, but we want to hear all about your party when we return!”

“You go and have fun!” replied Ruth. “I am having the most marvelous time!”

Conversations like these become the amusing silver lining stories of the journey into dementia. Brian and Sharon were told her mother Ruth would live 6 months after her diagnosis. Ruth lived 14 years. With competent medical care and loving family caregivers, 14 years is not unusual.

After diagnosis, Ruth moved into Brian and Sharon’s beautiful home.  When care became a 24/7 job, they hired caregivers to come in and help during the day. Additional care afforded them the occasional (and much needed) weekend away.

Communication with Dementia patients is not always as pleasant as this story suggests. Getting someone to do even basic life activities like showering or dressing can become challenging when the centers that regulate emotion and communication are dwindling down to zero.  Making dementia’s reality your new reality is tricky, but perhaps a little Scripture can help.

In John 5, a man who was disabled was placed in the Sheep Gate, near the pool of Bethesda.  This was the adult day care of the first century.  Families would place their disabled relatives here in the morning.  At night, they would come back and collect their family member and take them home.  During the day, their only (and very slight) hope was to get into the pool if it “stirred” as they believed the stirring came from an angel.  The belief is that whoever got into the water first would be healed.  Jesus walked straight into this place, found the man, and entered into his world.  The disabled man had been there for 38 years!  Can you imagine?  Jesus did not require this man to come into Jesus’ world, but Jesus entered his…and healed him.

This is what so many do with those who have dementia.  Instead of requiring the person with dementia to enter the sane world, these courageous caregivers enter the world of a person who has dementia, seeing the world through their eyes, and brining healing.  Even if the healing is only extending a comfortable existence for more years, it is healing nonetheless. 

When dealing with dementia, it is easy to focus on the practical and demand our loved one come into our world.  We stay in our own reality and expect our loved one to adapt.  But, if we make these demands, we miss the possibility of transfiguration: the metamorphosis into a new reality.  If we learn to listen, and enter into someone else’s reality, we just may experience some healing ourselves. Perhaps Ruth’s party was an invitation for Brian and Sharon to slow down and enter the dance with her imagined adored relatives playing the piano. The example of Christ invites us into His reality of grace, compassion and patient forgiveness.

Caring for someone with dementia is a life altering experience that may leave you with more questions than you have answers.  When you need a little respite, or an extra person who can enter this altered reality with you, AKOTA is here to help.


Home Is Where Your Heart Is

“I love my neighborhood! Lived here for 50 years, and can’t imagine living anywhere else! I’ve seen all the neighborhood kids grow up right next to my own, and now I see new little ones come trick or treating at my door. See that tree over there? Claire used to climb it with Matt and Carry. Now Carry’s a local cop, Matt has a wife and kids of his own, and Claire is my financial advisor!” 

Our neighborhood is the kind that sticks together. Twice a year, our community gathers at Pamela’s house to listen to neighbors-turned-entertainers perform.  An 8-year-old plays her favorite piano tune.  An awkward high-schooler shines as she plays her clarinet. A college student offers to play his guitar, and a mother and daughter sing a duet from Phantom.  All of us remember when the highlight of the evening was 80-year-old Roy playing the flute, and Jim playing jazz standards on his trumpet.  We miss those two, but the celebrations continue to this day, and always end in a big sing along of show tunes.

Many of our neighbors never want to leave our community. Indeed, nationwide, most seniors (87% to be exact) would like to ‘age in place’.  We want to stay in our homes long after the 8-year-old leaves for Boston College, and the Phantom singer becomes a psychotherapist. We want to walk the neighborhood and remember Roy with his flute who lived in the house over there, or Jim on his boat by the river.

Even in a tight knit community like ours, aging in place needs support.  The Gospel of Matthew (25:35-36 to be exact) calls for us to care for our communities:



‘For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’


Indeed, when a neighbor gets sick, we bring a casserole. And when a new family moves in, we bake cookies. I remember when Pamela drove to the pharmacy to pick up antibiotics when I was at home with sick babies.  Our neighbors are just a phone call away, but…

As neighbors we don’t know or see the whole story.  We keep our debilities from their concerned eyes.  Do we see our neighbors when they need to be clothed? Do we know when a fall, or memory loss makes them feel like a prisoner in their own homes? Children move from the neighborhood to pursue their lives, and, as neighbors, we can only do so much.

What a gift it is, to provide in-home care to our neighbors who want to stay in their own homes. To provide nutritious meals in the comfort of one’s own kitchen. To help with the laundry, the day-to-day housekeeping, and rides to the doctor.  To gently remind someone to take their medicine, and be neighbor, friend, and almost family to someone who once felt isolated. That’s what AKOTA Home Care does.

As I write, a winter storm approaches many communities along the Eastern seaboard.  Let us pray together that neighbors will continue to care for neighbor. That neighbor kids will continue to shovel the snow off the next door neighbor’s drive or bring a pot of soup to someone who can’t get out in the snow.  Christ asks us to notice our neighbors.  As you visit, if you think they might need a little more help than your community can provide, give us a call.



Home for the Holidays

Nancy quietly contemplated the newly decorated Christmas tree glowing across the living room.   The small white lights gave a warm and peaceful glow to her childhood home, illuminating the newly arrived hospital bed in which her mother nestled.  A small smile came to Nancy’s lips as she remembered her mother’s directions, “See that crystal angel ornament in the box to the right of the snowman?  Aunt Sara gave that to me when you were born! I always hang it right below the star, where all your brother’s and sister’s ornaments are.” Nancy treasured this rare evening when Mom’s eyes twinkled as they used to, and Mom’s loving attention to the tree reminded Nancy of her long-ago childhood Christmases.


Nancy was grateful her brother and sister remembered to “Skype in” from their homes across the country.  They did their best to coax Mom to take a few more bites of the dinner Nancy prepared, or at least a sip or two from the Ensure can in Nancy’s hand.  After the tree was decorated, and the calls were finished, Nancy gently repositioned Mom with pillows and blankets making her as comfortable as possible. All the excitement made it difficult for Mom to settle in for the night, but now Nancy sat in peaceful silence at her mother’s bedside while Mom took quiet, shallow breaths. The peaceful strains of carols from her Christmas playlist softened the gurgle of the oxygen machine next to Mom’s bedside.


We tend to think of Christmas in terms of children’s Santa parties, cookie decorating, and the ever-present Elf on the Shelf.   After all, Christmas is about a poor child born through a young girl’s courageous ‘Yes’.  But Christmas is more than Santa or the celebration of a child born in Bethlehem.  The Angel Gabriel’s words in the Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38) speak to all of us no matter where we find ourselves this Christmas season.  Just like Mary, Nancy may not feel like a ‘favored one’ as she sits by her mother’s bedside.  Like Nancy, Mary was greatly troubled by the burden she was bearing. For both, the Angel’s words, “Do not be afraid, for you have found favor with God” are filled with doubt and confusion. After all, Mary’s first response was not a quick, energetic ‘yes’, but a more tremulous “How can this be?”


Christ’s presence in our lives does not come without challenge, suffering or pain.  The coming of Christmas tells us that Christ dwells among us, not just 2000 years ago, but today.  Christ is in Nancy’s patient caregiving. Christ is in the twinkle in her mother’s eye. Christ is in the friends who stop by with Christmas cheer and casseroles.


Although Nancy is honored to care for her mom, the stress of family caregiving can be overwhelming.  Just like Nancy, we hope you will see Christ in AKOTA Home Care caregivers who are ready to step in and help you this holiday season. Whether it is just a four hour break to do some Christmas shopping, or 24/7 care so you can visit your grandkids, AKOTA Home Care promises to see Christ in you, and see Christ in your loved one.


Peace be with you, and may you see Christ in all you do this Christmas Season.

In Gratitude

John pulled his tired and old frame back into the airport wheelchair, his old legs nearly giving out.  He wasn’t as strong as he used to be!  The trip to the airport in Colorado Springs had been hard enough.  The plane aisle was hard to navigate; the seat was smaller than he remembered. “When did they make these seats so small?” he thought. His 89-year old body complained at every bump, jostle, and adjustment.  His daughter was with him which made everything easier…except that dang toilet!  Why…he had more space on the troop ship in ’42 when they went across the Pacific!  Now, here he was, crawling off the plane and into an airport wheelchair in the hot, muggy ramp entering Reagan National Airport in Arlington, VA asking himself, with each painful move, why in the world had he come? 


His daughter had begged him to go.  Said they wanted to show him the World War II monument in DC.  Who was “they” anyway?  “They” had paid his way, so he decided he would go.  After all, at 89, he didn’t feel he could make many more trips like this again.


Coming up the ramp he noticed there were a lot of people and a lot of crowds. “Is it always this crowded in the terminal these days?”  It is mighty noisy too…like someone special was coming.  Then he saw the sign…


“Welcome WWII Veterans!  We Honor You.”


Tears welled up in his eyes.  Energy flowed back into tired bones.  They were clapping for HIM!  There were signs and kids and cheers and smiles and more cheers.  Strangers slapped him on the back and climbed over to shake his hand to say thank you.  A sharp looking line of young Marines saluted his entrance while his daughter, with tear streaked face, was doing her best to let everyone touch him, see him, and thank him.  His heart was melting…melting under the warmth of gratitude and memories.




Recently, a friend of mine participated in the arrival of an ‘Honor Flight’.  Many of us who fly regularly have had the privilege of seeing aging veterans from around the country fly in to spend a couple of days touring Washington DC.  In the arrival halls of local airports, World War II vets in their 90’s, Korean War vets in their 80’s, and Vietnam War vets in their 60’s and 70’s are greeted by cheering volunteers, and young recruits from all branches of service. My friend and her small children were part of the cheering team and encouraged unsuspecting passengers to join the community of clappers.  Many participants are brought to tears by the whole event; our nation showing gratitude to those who gave so much to protect our freedoms.  The back of Honor Flight volunteer t-shirts bear a quote from Will Rogers: “Not all of us can be heroes, some of us stand on the curb and clap.”


The Bible passage 1st Thessalonians 1:1-5 reminds us that today’s heroes deserve a great round of applause from the sidewalks of our nation.  Not only do we honor veterans on November 11th, we also honor the everyday heroes who have persevered in the face of all kinds of storms and trials.  From the search and rescue teams saving hundreds in flood ravaged Houston, animal rescue workers saving pets from back to back hurricanes in Florida, utility company employees still working to bring power to Puerto Rico, policemen and trauma centers saving lives in these areas as well as the manmade disaster of the Las Vegas massacre, to firefighters who continue to battle blazes in California and the West, we join the chorus found in Scripture:


                        We give thanks to God always for all of you, remembering

                        you in our prayers, unceasingly calling to mind your work of faith

                        and labor of love and endurance in hope of our Lord Jesus Christ.


These men and women were once on the sidelines clapping for heroes that came before. Today we recognize them as heroes. They labor to serve those most in need of help; those most in need to see God in action through acts of human faith, hope and love.


While veterans and rescue workers have been singled out as heroes, there are some heroes in homes across the country who care for loved ones battling cognitive and degenerative disabilities.  These home bound heroes are close to my heart this month, as I remember helping my mom care for her husband who died on their wedding anniversary just last year. We were so fortunate that Bob became more gentle, more dignified and more grateful each day we cared for him. Despite his graciousness, being a caregiver is never easy. Mom and I had each other to lean on, and a community of friends to gather around us. Even with all this support, we often found ourselves emotionally and physically exhausted, and so grateful for the respite that our home care workers gave us. They bathed and dressed Bob and taught us more than a few secrets of the trade to make him more comfortable in his final days.  Bob could stay home with us, and we were able to care for him, while loved and supported by professionals who knew exactly what we were going through.


Our First Thessalonians passage ends: “Our Gospel did not come to you in word alone, but also in the power of the Holy Spirit, with much conviction”.  AKOTA Home Care honors this conviction by commending veterans, first responders, and caregivers.  The Honor Flight volunteers are the Gospel in action: they know how to love and serve the veterans of war.  Our disaster response teams are Gospel in action: they know how to love and serve those traumatized by natural and man-made disasters.  Our AKOTA Home Care caregivers are Gospel in action: they know how to love and serve YOUR family, helping as you care for your loved ones.

Working To Build A Future

Erika, an AKOTA Home Care caregiver, came to this country from El Salvador 17 years ago.  At first it was a difficult transition. Her English wasn’t good enough for many jobs, so she worked as a cleaner while she took English classes, eventually qualifying for Job Corps classes to become a Certified Nurse’s Aide. 


“I always wanted to be a nurse” Erika told me, “and being a caregiver allows me to care for people in their own homes.  I cared for one client for 14 years!  When you take care of people, you get to know them really well. You understand them and are able to calm their fears.  You learn from each other, and they learn to trust you.”


Jesus’ parable, The Workers in the Vineyard (Mt 20:1-16) speaks to the experience of many of our caregivers.  While some of us have been blessed to have been born in the United States, others have come to this country at the 3 o’clock or the 5 o’clock hour.  These immigrants often find employment more difficult to come by.  “Why do you stand here idle all day?” the Land-owner in the parable asks.  The unemployed answer, “Because no one has hired us.” The landowner said to them, “You too go into my vineyard.”

The picture above is of the Christ Church Cathedral at Oxford University.  Construction began in 1160 AD and was finished a swift 60 years later in 1200.  This picture was captured in September, 2017.  The cathedral is still being used daily 857 years after construction!  The cathedral was built by hands similar to Erika mentioned above….as a labor of love by some who were English and others who did not necessarily call England their original home but who, with loving and caring hands, built not just a structure but a cathedral.  And the impact of their work is still being felt hundreds of years later.

At AKOTA, we feel we are doing the same thing…We are not just running a business!  We are building a cathedral in the hearts and minds of our clients, caregivers and staff to the glory of God.  And although we have been loving and serving our clients and caregivers for almost 24 years, we hope to still be loving and serving for years to come (although I don’t know about 857 years…that would be a LONG TERM business plan!).

Many of our caregivers are born in America, but many often come to us as refugees from war torn countries. Other find their way here in search of the American Dream.  Regardless of their origin, all our caregivers are seeking a just wage, and the safety and security of a steady job. AKOTA provides this pathway for employment and citizenship. Just like the Land-owner in the parable, we wish to give all our caregivers an opportunity to love and serve in their chosen career path no matter what time they arrive at our vineyard.  This is why our caregivers are not independent contractors, but employees of our company. Thus, we can provide them a just wage, paid sick leave, paid vacation time, a 401(k) retirement package, health insurance and other benefits.  Because we care for our caregivers like family, we provide continuing education programs, and tuition reimbursement for CNA classes. 

In the words of Natasha, another of our dedicated caregivers, “AKOTA is a family.  The care team functions as a family, and we care for our clients like family.”

We welcome you to become one of our family too.  For more information on how AKOTA cares for people in their homes, please see our website: or call one a member of our care team: 1-877-549-7894.

(By the way, in constructing the cathedral, the builders intentionally started with relatively little ornamentation at ground level and increased the delicacy and ornamentation of the construction as they went up.  This was to draw the eye to heaven and to bring glory to God.  In the same way, we hope that as we build we get more and more skilled at loving and serving!)

Who do you say that I am?

 “How old are you on the inside?”

 If you are around 50, I’ll bet you feel like a person in their 30s.  My mom is 78, but she really feels like she’s 60.  Ask around, and I’ll bet you’ll find that most people feel 15-20 years younger than they actually are.  No matter what our bodies tell other people, we are not as old as we seem, we are as old as we feel. 

What does it mean when we feel younger than others see us? I think that inside we perceive ourselves to be mentally quicker, physically fitter, and generally more vibrant than our advancing age suggests. Essentially, we view ourselves as more than others say that we are.

This can get in the way, especially when our parent’s age, and believe they can do more than we think they can. Dad feels like he still drives amazingly well, even when our experience suggests otherwise.  In her Atlantic article, “What Aging Parents Want From their kids”, Claire Berman says that “as parents get older, attempts to hold on to our independence can be at odds with even the most well-intentioned “suggestions” from our children. We want to be cared about, but fear being cared for. Hence the push and pull when a well-meaning offspring steps onto our turf.”* Indeed, ‘who do you say that I am’ is often at odds with who I believe myself to be.

Jesus understands this identity crisis.  In Matthew 16: 13-20, Jesus first asks his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” His disciples answer that people see him, not as the Messiah, but as a prophet.  They see him as less than he truly is. Then Jesus asks those closest to him, “Who do you say that I am?” And those who know him best give him the answer he is yearning for. “You are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God”. They see Jesus as he truly is, not how others perceive him to be.

If you are reading this blog, you most likely are looking for resources to help your aging loved one. We want to see our parents for who they truly are, and it is hard to remember that who we see is rarely who they know themselves to be.  At AKOTA Home Care we often encounter daughters that know their parent needs some help in the home, but their parent thinks they are doing just fine.  As our roles change from offspring, to caregiver, we can often find ourselves at odds with our parent.  Your mom or dad is more than a patient to you. And they are more than an aging parent to themselves.  In turn, with all your responsibilities, you more than a daughter, and definitely more than a caregiver. Just like Jesus, we are more than the perceptions of others, and more than the roles life has given us to play. 

One of the pillars of our company is to give our clients hope by letting daughters be daughters again.  We take care of the nitty gritty, so you can see your parent as they truly are for you and your family.  Having a caregiver in the home restores relationships by providing an extra pair of hands to help your parent be as independent as possible, an extra pair of ears, to hear their needs, and an extra set of eyes to help all of you see where faith, hope and love can be maximized for the best possible life.

A life in their own home.

So what do our parent’s want? Claire Berman says that mom and dad want both autonomy and connection in relations with their kids.  They hope that their children will be available when they need them, but resist the overprotectiveness that may come with that connection.  Hiring someone to help, even if you get initial resistance, may give your family the hope you need to achieve this balance. Give us a call today, so we can help you re-establish the relationship you both desire.


*”What Aging Parents Want From Their Kids” really is a fantastic article. If you would like to read it, please click on this link:


Having Faith in the Future

Last month, one of the most capable women I know was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease.  Ann* is one of 60,000 people this year who will be given this  life changing diagnosis.  At age 60, she is looking for hope and solutions for this next phase of her life. I remember Ann telling me, “You can take away my ability to walk, but please don’t take away my ability to think”.  How do we find faith in Ann’s future?

At AKOTA Home Care, we see patients and their families struggling with the realities of memory and movement disorders.  If you are reading this blog, you probably know the statistics: one in ten people age 65 and older has Alzheimer’s dementia. Mrs. B* refuses to be discouraged by her disease.  “Although I see how Alzheimer’s is affecting me, I have faith that something good will come out of this.”

In the past month, I have realized there are many ways to look at the memory and movement disorders epidemic. Some look at the problem as a business opportunity. They build more and more memory care facilities; they anticipate the growth in Senior services, they look for a niche in the market. Others look at the epidemic with despair.  The PBS documentary about Alzheimer’s Disease, Every Minute Counts, spends an hour outlining the despair, the anguish, and the expense that families face as they care for their parents. 

It doesn’t have to be this way.

Faith in Christ means that we have faith in the future.

Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s don’t have to be met with resignation and hopelessness. In Matthew 13, Jesus tells us:

The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed that a person took and sowed in a field.  It is the smallest of all the seeds, yet when full-grown it is the largest of plants.  It becomes a large bush, and the birds of the sky come and dwell in its branches. (Mt. 13:31-32)

Our faith is a small seed of hope in the midst of discouragement. If we focus on a future of hope and healing, rather than disease and disability we can find the possibility of growth; the large bush that is the resting place for life.

Where are these seeds of faith planted?

One place these small seeds of faith are growing is at Georgetown University’s Clinics for both Movement and Memory Disorders.  Their ground-breaking research is showing marked improvements for Parkinson’s and Dementia patients.  Dr. Yaghi, a researcher for movement disorders said to me, “Others are building memory care facilities to house patients. We are working so that there is no need for these facilities.” Ann has already made an appointment with the Movement Disorders Clinic. Mrs. B. is excited to give the Memory Disorder Clinic a try. “If I can help someone else, and even help myself, it would be a gift to all of us.” This is what we call Faith in the Future.

At AKOTA Home Care, we celebrate organizations like Georgetown University Medical Center; organizations that see hope where others see despair. We see our company as an opportunity to love and serve people as they deal with the day to day realities of memory and movement disorders.  Like you, we look forward to the day that our patients experience healing rather than disease.

Right now, your faith in the future may be the size of a mustard seed.  If this is true, please remember Christ’s hope:  surrounded by a community who want to love and serve you, that small seed can grow and flourish into the largest of plants.

Just like Dr. Yaghi, we believe there is faith in your future.

For more information about Georgetown Medical Center’s research, please see the following:

For the Memory Disorders Clinic:


For the Movement Disorders Clinic:


To learn more about AKOTA Home Care visit:


*Names have been changed to protect privacy

Do Not Be Afraid, We Are With YOU!

“Mom?”  Amy anxiously called out into the entry hall as she put down her suitcase.  Her childhood home looked nothing like the immaculate house her mother maintained after the kids left for college, and the grandchildren were grown.  “Mom, are you there?”

“Well, Amy! What a lovely surprise!” Mom exclaimed as she walked in from the back bedroom. One look and Amy knew that something was up. She and her mom excitedly talked about this visit last night on the phone. Her mom’s normally well-coiffed hair was disheveled, and she seemed unsure of herself, maybe even slightly confused. This was just not right.  Mom has always been the anchor of the family, cooking all the holiday meals, serving on Boards throughout their community, and the chief source of wisdom for her three children. 

“Mom? What’s wrong?” Amy said once again, as fear gripped her heart. Amy’s imagination flew to the dismal thought of her mother, slumped over in a wheel chair in a nursing home.  “Nothing is wrong, Amy. I just woke up, and I haven’t had time to dress.” The stains on Mom’s clothes indicated that she hadn’t had time to dress in a few days.

This just didn’t make sense.  Amy’s mom had seemed like her old self on the phone, but Amy now realized that her mother was expertly hiding something from her.  Mom had always been honest and upfront with Amy. Why didn’t Mom tell her she was not well?

Dr. Vivek Sinha, Chief Medical Officer of Belleview Medical Partners, teaches families that hidden underneath this denial a particular emotion; fear.  Fear that illness could rob her of her independence.  Fear that she would not be allowed to live in her own home. Fear that her wishes may not be heard.

In Scripture, one of Jesus’ main messages to us is ‘do not be afraid’ or even, ‘do not worry’.  In Matthew’s Gospel, Jesus says to the Twelve: “Fear no one. Nothing is concealed that will not be revealed…what I say to you in the darkness, speak to the light.” (Mt. 10:26-27) By facing our fears, and committing ourselves to finding solutions, we can put a healing balm on our troubles. 

So, how do we face our fears?

Fear is a sign that something is wrong.  If you are in Amy’s situation, remember that your fears, and your mother’s fears, are signs that something needs to be addressed.  Fear often get in the way of a parent seeking medical attention, or of families being able to work together to care for their parent.  Mikki Firor, a gerontologist specializing in dementia care, teaches families to get to the root of their own fear as well as their parent’s fear so they can more clearly address the health issues at hand.

Fear can make us jump to conclusions.  There could be many resolvable reasons for your mother’s current condition. A thorough physical by your family physician could reveal easily resolvable problems that will bring Mom back to wellness. Medication interactions, infections, and other easily treatable aliments can look like dementia, but are not.  Bring your concerns to the light by talking to experts like Dr. Sinha and Mikki.

Fear is isolating.  Matthew’s Gospel also teaches that we are not alone. Not only does God love us intimately (God has counted the hairs on our head!), you are surrounded by a community of experts whose sole purpose it to care for your Mom.  Perhaps you would like a caregiver to come into the home to support Mom.  Perhaps she just needs help with the housekeeping, and meal preparation.  Maybe she needs a companion, to keep her mind active, and help her with daily living activities.  AKOTA Home Care's sole purpose (and soul purpose) is to love and serve you and your Mom. 

Let your fear be a motivator.  Fear keeps us from the edge of the cliff, and out of a storm’s path.  Let your fear be the beginning of finding solutions to improve your parent’s quality of life. Remember, if your Mom won’t address the issues herself, she may very well do it out of love for you:

“Mom,” Amy said with resolve, “I think we should go to the doctor.”

“Amy, I’m fine! There is no reason to bother a doctor just because I haven’t done the dishes.”

“Mom, I appreciate your independent spirit, but it would make me feel more comfortable if we could just go for a quick check up. Could you do this for me?”

What parent can refuse the request of a loving child?


You can find Dr. Sinha at Belleview Medical Partners:

Mikki Firor, MS can be found at:  

And you know you can always find us at

Hope in a Galaxy Far, Far, Away (and in your home too...)

If you are like me, you find great inspiration in movies. I was especially inspired by the new Star Wars movie, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.  In Rogue One, hope was the catalyst that gave our intergalactic heroine, Jyn Erso, the courage to stand against Darth Vader and the indecision of her own rebellion forces. In facing what seems to be a hopeless situation, Jyn says, “Rebellions are built on hope”.


Certainly, the rebellion of love that continues to be Christ’s ministry is built on hope. In John 16: 32-33, Jesus says,


Behold, the hour is coming and has arrived when each of you will be scattered to his own home and you will leave me alone.   But I am not alone, because the Father is with me. I have told you this so that you might have peace in me. In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world.


Perhaps you feel scattered. Do you have a parent, or loved one in the Colorado Springs area, and you live too far away to care for them? Perhaps you live locally, but feel alone in your caring giving. Like Jesus, you are not alone. Just like our Father was with Jesus, AKOTA is here for you. We are your hope, giving you fresh energy to carry on.


Jyn also knew that hope is not a strategy.  Hope needs a strategy that is understandable and doable.  Let us help you find a care strategy that embraces your hopes with our compassionate care. One of our nurses would be more than happy to come visit, free of charge.


You may not think you are as courageous as an intergalactic heroine facing the Death Star, but, we think you are!   Let us be a part of your forces for hope.  We can help you.

Peace in a World of Doubt

Lucy was racked with doubt…did she care enough for her mom?  Could she do more?  Should she do less?  How could she know the difference?  Or the answer?  Mom certainly gave her enough clues, but from both sides.  Yep…should do more.  Nope…should do less.  Shoulda, coulda, woulda…

Doubt rushed in, draining her already low energy.  A tear burned down her cheek.

Doubt rushing in is not unique to home care decisions!  Right after the glory of Easter Sunday, the Bible presents us with a story of doubt rushing in.  Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just stick with the afterglow of glory?  But no, we are presented with Thomas, who just cannot believe that his fellow apostles had seen the Risen Christ. I think we all experience these kind of moments. You know, those times when you just can’t calm the doubts enough to see clearly?

 Certainly Thomas had been on an emotional roller coaster. By coming to love Jesus, how hard was it for him to watch him suffer?  I can only imagine that the disciples were wondering, “did we do enough?” “Did we love him enough?” Jesus answers that question in the resurrection. “Peace be with you” he says. Perhaps in that he is saying, “Don’t worry, have no fear, you have loved me well.”

So many people come to us searching for a trustworthy caregiver for their mom or dad.  We talk to people like Thomas all the time. People who find it hard to believe that their parent has reached the stage that they need in-home help to stay healthy and safe.  Just like Thomas, they find it is a leap of faith to trust an agency with the care of their parent.  Just as Jesus said, “Peace be with you”, we at ACCfamily/AKOTA Home Care also strive to give you peace.  Peace of mind that your mom or dad is loved by the best caregiver for their personality and needs. Peace of mind that you are doing enough, that you are caring enough, that you are loving enough.

 With Jesus, we say to you, “Peace be with you”.