We often memorize dates- birthdays, graduations, holidays, difficult moments in life and happy memories; dates that leave an indelible mark on our lives. December 18, 2016 is a date that Howard Grant holds dear in his memory, a milestone. This date was the first time Howard had ever found himself in a place where he could address the symptoms of his mental illness. This is the date that Howard came to MADO Healthcare- Old Town. He was scared, “I don’t have any family. The friends I’ve made here are all I have”.
Howard has settled into his space at MADO and as those he met became like family to him, he had a desire to share some of his holiday memories and traditions with all the clients at MADO. Like dates, oftentimes holiday traditions and recipes are something we all hold dear in our lives. For Howard, Springtime means Easter and he thinks of the deviled eggs he used to enjoy eating at his grandmother’s house. Last year, Howard shared this memory with the staff at MADO Healthcare. They recognized the sometimes difficult emotions that often come around holidays. The staff helped Howard arrange a workshop to make the deviled egg recipe his grandmother used to make. They assisted Howard in purchasing the needed ingredients at the local grocery store. He worked with many of his friends at MADO Healthcare- Old Town, his “new family”, to make several trays of deviled eggs in time for his first Easter holiday at MADO. He and his friends proudly shared their delicious dish and the memory of a holiday tradition with all the clients and staff at last year’s Easter meal. It was a moment of triumph for Howard- one of pride, joy and the fulfillment of sharing and connection.
Howard is now working on making a mural in the employee lounge. He finds creating, whether with food or paints, therapeutic. At MADO, “they let you do your thing” he says. Howard’s path in recovery is ongoing. “I want to be a better me. I want to help people someday.” He shared. In his time at MADO, Howard has brought joy to the center, given it a touch of familiarity and home for many and his creativity and connections have inspired his fellow clients. He hopes to someday become a Certified Recovery Support Specialist (CRSS). Like certain dates, memories and traditions, Howard is leaving his mark and we at MADO Healthcare are proud of all he has accomplished.