Around the Town: A few will-earned compliments

By Loretta Humble/Around the Town

I’m always talking about my life in these columns because that is all I know to talk about. But there is a big part of my life that I don’t talk about much here. That is because I don’t ever want you to think I’m using this space for free advertising. But sometimes I think I bend over too far the other way and talk about everybody else’s business except my own.

I’ll admit, I really blew our horn when Cedar Lake Nursing Home celebrated its 50th anniversary. I figured every 50 years it would be okay for me to tell you what a super great place it is.

But our folks at Cedar Lake Home Health and Hospice don’t think I’ve been paying them enough attention, and they are right. Especially about the GZ Sobol exercise classes. I should be reminding folks about these all the time. This is something we do free and is making a difference in a lot of people’s lives, people with Parkinson’s Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, other neurodegenerative diseases, and older adults just trying to age the best they can.

I did a big write-up over two years ago when Gary Sobol himself came here to teach us how to do these. Sobol is the guy who had Parkinson’s Disease so bad, his doctors told him to go to bed. Instead he figured out an exercise program that not only got him out of bed, but got him traveling all over the country teaching what he learned and inspiring people by his example. His program has since gone viral. We kind of got in on the ground floor, and we ran with it.

Caren Anthony was our marketer at the time. I guess she still has that title. But she took the course, became the first Certified GZ Sobol Parkinson’s Disease Exercise Instructor in the state of Texas, and immediately started leading classes. This now her full-time job and she love it. We have classes going three times a week in Athens and Gun Barrel City, and twice a week in Corsicana and Waxahachie.
Some people may think helping people get better so they don’t need our services is not what you hire marketers for, but we are really proud of what we’ve got Caren doing. I think it is time we changed her title. If you want information about the classes, just call Caren at 903-275-9460.

There are some other things my folks want me to tell you about. The rest of the things my folks are wanting me to tell you amount to bragging on ourselves, but while I have your attention, I might as well do it. We are really excited to have two first-rate doctors recently join our team as medical directors. Both practice family medicine with Lakeland Medical Associates. Dr. Ronald Heine, MD is our new Hospice Medical Director. He graduated with honors from University of Oklahoma College of Medicine in 1982. Dr. Richard David, MD, our new Home Health Medical Director, is an old friend, having practiced here in Malakoff from 1985 to 1990, in the offices Dr. Sanner now occupies. He graduated from Baylor College of Medicine in 1981. Each of these doctors is going to add a lot to our organization.

Here is another brag—You may have noticed I talk a lot about Jonathan Michel’s needs. Remember, Jonathan had the devastating brain injury, and has been left in need of total care and therapy, and has received no funding for anything. What I haven’t told you is that Jonathan is getting physical therapy anyhow, because Cedar Lake has been providing it free, in the person of our beautiful Physical Therapist, Cindy Kalawe, PT. Karen Michels says Cindy’s visits are the highlight of Jonathan’s week, and they give the family real hope in a tough situation. We at Cedar Lake really admire this family, and are doing what we can to help get them some funding.

And there is this: We got a big certificate saying we are in the top 25% of agencies surveyed for patient satisfaction. That means we please more patients than 75% of agencies all over the country. That may not sound like a big deal to you, but most agencies aren’t bad. They probably got good reviews too. Ours were just better. And we like to think if there had been a top 5%, we would have been placed there. How is that for blowing our own horn?

I’ve been trying to find an excuse to end this by telling you how cute our Occupational Therapist Jim McCain and his family were ringing the Salvation Army bell down at Brookshires last week. Heck, I don’t need an excuse. They were just really cute. Jim was wearing a cap with reindeer horns that he could make wiggle, and his young son Jacob danced while he rang the bell. Jim says they made a record haul of donations. He says Jacob’s dancing did the trick. I think it may have been those wiggly reindeer horns.
I’ve posted a lot of information about Sobol’s Parkinson’s Network, and the work we do here locally as well as the details about that Top 25 Award we got at I’m also going to post a little video of Jacob’s dance there. You would not want to miss that.