By Adam Brazeau
CORNWALL, Ontario – Generations of wisdom and a kind gesture made a big impression on new parents at the Cornwall Community Hospital.
Residents from Chartwell Chateau Cornwall handed out Mother’s Day cards and knitted toques to hospital patients and visitors on Friday (May 8).
When the trio of do-gooding seniors was introduced to Erica Primeau and her newborn daughter (and second child), a lifetime of memories as moms, grandmothers, and great-grandmothers washed over them.
Melody Primeau was born at 8:44 a.m. on May 8, 2015.
“Enjoy the times you hold your baby in your arms – always keep that wonderful feeling,” said Stella Marleau, 89.
She described the moment a child arrives as “the happiest” since parents finally get to discover all the physical similarities they share.
“At my age it’s really nice to have this experience again,” said Marleau.
Erica was able to hold Melody immediately after the caesarean (C-section) birth while still in the operating room thanks to a new skin-to-skin initiative at CCH.
“Last time I waited five hours before seeing my baby, this was much better,” said Primeau.
Erica described the delivery as “painful, exhausting, and so worth it.”
“The babies are much happier being close to their moms,” said Jackie Girard, RN-manager of the CCH Women and Children’s Health Department.
She noted that a lullaby rings out over the PA system whenever a baby is born (twice for twins).
The staff considers it “a real morale booster.”
“A collective aww echoes throughout the hallways every time,” said Girard.
A few steps outside Erica’s door, the ladies encountered a young woman patiently waiting on the test results of her sick infant. The kind gestures they offered her were welcomed with open arms.
The cards being handed out came with special messages of encouragement and sage guidance.
Some featured quirky parenthood survival tips for the bumps along the way. The refreshing dose of offbeat humour was provided by the trio’s so-called “wild card.”
“Congratulations! Sleep while you can,” laughed Keziah Chisholm, 89.
“Don’t worry about the housework; your health and the baby’s health come first.”
Chartwell Chateau Cornwall sales consultant Brianne Vervoorn and office manager Roxanne Lafrance also joined in on the fun.
“We took a new spin on Mother’s Day,” said Vervoorn.
“Our residents will still be celebrated on Sunday with a special brunch, complete with delicious food, flowers, family and friends. But this year we wanted to do something a little different and get involved with the community.”
Sixteen residents participated by decorating their own cards.
Anita Desroseillers, 81, took a lot of pride in her message, which was inspired by the love of her six kids, 15 grandchildren, and 17 great-grandchildren.
“Enjoy your baby – they don’t stay that way very long. You have made a miracle. You are now a co-creator with God. That little face is the biggest present you will ever receive. It will give you love for the rest of your life.”
The entire staff at TC Media – Cornwall Seaway News would like to wish all the “miracle makers” out there a Happy Mother’s Day weekend.