Kathleen Mears

Kathleen Mears is a long-time blogger who has been a nursing home resident for 21 years. She is an incomplete quadriplegic and uses a power wheelchair to get around. Her computer is her "window on the world." This blog shares her thoughts and view of life as a nursing home resident as well as ideas of how it might be improved in the future.

Laptop listening again

Speech recognition software helps blogger Kathleen Mears connect to the world. Windows updates prevented her microphone from working, causing her to spend weeks troubleshooting for a solution.  Read More »

The praying mantis

Resident blogger Kathleen Mears gets the creepy crawlies when her aides can't seem to kill her new insect roommate. Read More »

Dining dilemmas

Resident blogger Kathy Mears doesn’t know how meal plans are made, but she knows that when she’s eating simply to eat and not for enjoyment, the food doesn’t taste as delicious. Read More »

Wanted: A room of my own

Blogger Kathleen Mears lives in a semi-private room but prefers to live alone. She’s been lucky to have a room to herself but knows it’s a matter of time when, not if, she’ll get a roommate. Read More »

When voice recognition software doesn’t listen

Resident blogger Kathleen Mears uses voice recognition software to navigate the Internet. Her software isn’t working, so she’s been forced to use a workaround to navigate—and communicate.  Read More »

Lamenting a new cell phone

When older technology gives up the ghost or is no longer supported, cell phone companies aren't always helpful when it comes to setting up a new cell phone. Read More »

A less than joyful ride

Resident blogger Kathleen Mears continues to have trouble with her new power chair. The experience is frustrating because beyond the hassle of her time, it has restricted her mobility and independence. Read More »

Burial plans gone awry

How many of us have prepaid funerals? Do any of us wonder if our wishes will be honored? SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears discusses two New York Times articles that show what can happen with nursing home guardianships, funds sent to nursing homes and the resulting mix up. Read More »

Posterior Vitreous Detachment

Keeping up with wellness appointments can be a challenge—but SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears shows why it’s important to communicate with the primary care providers and the facility when scheduling specialty appointments. Read More »

Ohio Medicaid Qualified Income Trust

Setting up a Qualified Income Trust/Miller Trust to fulfill the Medicaid requirements can be tricky business, so Ohio's Medicaid recipients shouldn't wait to get started on the process, says SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears. Read More »

Giving thanks on July 4

Resident blogger Kathleen Mears reflects on how her Fourth of July celebrations have changed over the years—and how thankful she is for memories of both. Read More »

Collision in my new power chair

Getting used to piloting a new power chair was part of SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears' planned day out, but not the crash inside the salon. Read More »

A mini class reunion

When SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears emailed her high school reunion committee to say she wouldn't be able to attend the 50-year reunion, several of her classmates decided to surprise her with a visit. Read More »

My gender preference

SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears explains why some residents prefer to have their portions of their care delivered by an aide of a certain gender. Read More »

A warmed-over craving

Food cravings have SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears ready for a warm, crunchy taco, but some foods just aren't the same when reheated. Read More »

Getting stiff

Getting that handy touchpad laptop made life seem easier, but it wasn't so great for her hand's range of motion, says SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears. Read More »

Waiting for a new power chair

SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears relates how shopping for a new power chair can include a lot of adjustments and a lot of waiting. Read More »

Caught caring

SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears shares how a little appreciation can go a long way in well-designed employee recognition programs. Read More »

The story of mental decline

If you had the beginning stages of dementia, would you want to know? SNF resident blogger Kathleen mears weighs whether ignorance is bliss. Read More »

Ties that bind

Sometimes a careless action can cause a big headache. SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears relates how a gown tie forced the nurse to get out the scissors. Read More »

Working challenged

When an aide quits unexpectedly, it can really disrupt a nursing home's routines. SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears tells how two aides managed to do the work of three when a sudden staff shortage caught everyone by surprise. Read More »

The caped crusader

When bad weather thwarts social plans, a "girls day in" can be just as fun, says SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears. Read More »

An apparent seamless transition

For nursing homes residents, the transience of living space can be difficult to accept, especially when a resident dies. Read More »

In the future: ‘Droney’ the helper

Drones could someday provide the ultimate in customer service in nursing home setting, delivering sheets, fetching water and monitoring hallways for wanderers. But, would residents want it? Read More »

Healthcare workers impaired on the job

Workers who drink or use drugs may be able to hide their impairment from the boss, but sometimes the residents can tell right away, explains SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears. Read More »

Facility staff and cell phones

Resident blogger Kathleen Mears remembers when cell phones were first introduced in her nursing home and how much the etiquette and technology has changed. Read More »

The tooth-breaker

That infamous premade "chicken patty" might be convenient, but some residents would rather choose anything else than a dry, crunchy disk, says SNF resident blogger Kathy Mears.  Read More »

Turning up the heat

Resident blogger Kathleen Mears explains the process for adjusting the thermostat in her room. (Hint: It's not as simple as adjusting the dial.)  Read More »

Words of others

Curses! SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears talks about what can happen when staffers use foul language, especially if residents view it as disrespect. Read More »

A smoking light fixture

SNF resident blogger Kathleen Mears relates an exciting moment in the dining room, and how everyone reacted when smoke began pouring out of a dining room light fixture. Read More »