It’s been months since I updated this blog.
There comes a point where it’s all so distressing, writing it down just makes you have to go through it all twice.
A mere couple of weeks after I had written the last post, the Rest Home Manager approached me saying she wanted us to move Mum as she didn’t feel her staff were giving Mum the care she required. I was really upset and annoyed because she had assured me that could cope with Mum’s illness and had even moved her to a better room.
I talked to Social Services who were also not best pleased as the decision by the Rest Home had been completely reversed. However the bottom line was that we would have to start looking for an EMI Home once again, a task we really didn’t relish.
The next few weeks were incredibly difficult as we did the rounds of the Homes again. Jean, Mark and I were starting to bicker as we couldn’t agree on anything and the strain was really beginning to tell. Just when we thought we had things sorted, it had all fallen apart again.
It took a while but we eventually came to a compromise with a Home which seemed that it would be suitable for Mum even though we all had various reservations for different reasons. We moved Mum in on the 15th May and it wasn’t actually as difficult as we thought. As usual, I think we were suffering more than Mum!
It was a big shock to the system when we first started visiting Mum in the new Home. As the old Home was just a Rest Home for the Elderly, some residents spent most of their time in their rooms so the lounge was usually fairly empty plus there was a quiet lounge we could use where we usually managed to have a private visit. The new Home has two lounges but they are pretty full as there are 20 residents all with dementia and obviously they are not well enough to stay in their rooms all day. We can take Mum to her room but its on the lower ground floor so we have a few steps to negotiate which is becoming exceedingly tricky even with help. Or we can take her to the dining room but that is only accessible by lift for Mum. There is a lovely garden and we got into the habit of taking her out there but the last few weeks have actually been too hot for her to be outside. I don’t expect that will last long though!
Her balance and spacial awareness continues to deteriorate. She has had several falls, one of which resulted in a fractured wrist. The hospital put a cast on her arm and she managed to pick it off. They then put a stronger cast on and she managed to wriggle her arm out of it. She now has a velcro splint which we can at least put back on when she takes it off.
So that is where we are up to at present. The Home is not too far away for visiting. We are visiting once a day between us. As before, sometimes it’s a good visit…..sometimes not. She often chatters away but is no longer able to make any sense at all. Nor can she seem to understand when you speak to her. She often gets distracted by the TV just like she used to do at home. She will just start reading words from the TV to make conversation. She still recognises her family…..just! The staff say she’s settled in well so I guess we have to accept that. She’s sleeping and eating OK. She has a pressure mat both on her bed and her chair so the staff can be there quickly when she stands in case she falls again.
Several weeks ago, her false teeth went missing. The staff hunted high and low but they weren’t to be found. We have heard that this sort of thing happens pretty regularly in Homes, hearing aids and teeth being particularly prone to disappearing. Luckily Mum’s lovely Dentist who she has been with for years agreed to visit her to take the moulds for some new teeth. She should get those later this week. It has been bad enough seeing Mum not looking her usual well-groomed self without having her toothless as well!
And so it goes on………