Inspiring Joy – Celebrating Nana Flo

Florence – or Flo to friends – is 97, and can be thanked (or blamed, depending on your perspective) for an offspring of two children, eight grandchildren and three great grandchildren.

I’ve chosen my Nana Flo because as well as being an inspiration, she also has a few similarities to the character Joy in the show.

Nana has been faced with her fair share of challenges throughout the years: losing her mother when she was a baby and her father at 12 years old; serving as an ATS telephonist plotter during the second world war; being widowed 33 years ago; a number of health scares, falls and setbacks; and inevitably at 97, her siblings and closest friends all “beating her to it”.

Until earlier this year she was just about mobile (with the help of a stick) and living semiindependently, but after a TIA stroke and a fall she is now in a wheelchair and living in a care home.

Despite her difficulties – the frustrations of dementia and a deteriorating memory / loss of mobility and independence, she has never lost her sense of humour. She may not really know where she is or what is going on, but she always shows love and gratitude to those around her.

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