Mum moved back into a care home last month. I have lived with her and cared for her over the last 12 months, but had always planned to return to my own home at the end of the year. I took lots of photos to capture our good times together, knowing these times were limited. I've enjoyed compiling these pictures, which bring back treasured memories.
Since I got back from holiday mum has been more grumpy than usual. Sometimes she feels she has been wronged, withdraws, gives monosyllabic responses and behaves a bit like a sulky teenager. Not just with me, but with special carers that she normally gets on with.
The last six weeks have been very difficult for mum and I. As mum wasn't well she needed more active care and psychological support. To cope I needed more time off and good sleep, but the opposite happened. I felt the strain at times.
One morning recently, I overheard mum saying to the carer, “I should be able to get washed and dressed myself,” before bursting into tears. The carer was sensitive and supportive, and mum was soon dressed and ready for the day. But, sitting in the living room a little later, she was still feeling fragile and … Continue reading Mo the Cat: Value of Pets for People with Dementia
Choosing a care home for a family member living with dementia, may be the most important decision you ever make on their behalf. Of course if they have the capacity to make the decision, your role might be to support them. Either way, the more informed you are the better. The choice will have huge … Continue reading Choosing a Care Home
It’s been several weeks since I attended a valuable and engaging programme for carers of people living with dementia. It is a new initiative, and this was the first in a series of pilot courses run by Dementia Carers Count. Since the three-day programme, that took place in a comfortable hotel in Swindon, I have been … Continue reading New Course for Family Carers of People with Dementia
Recently, I had some success helping mum move from fear and distress to being able to smile again. Deep breathing and mindfulness helped. If you care for someone with dementia who is sometimes fraught, this might work for them too. Feeling fraught When I arrived to visit mum at the care home, she was in … Continue reading Mindfulness and Dementia
Mum often suffers high levels of anxiety and becomes very tearful and down. These strong emotional states are getting worse, and seem heightened following her change of room at the care home. I still haven't managed to unearth the core elements that will enable me to develop a 'Contented Dementia' plan, described in previous posts. … Continue reading Tackling Anxiety and Depression
Last Friday, my mother moved into a new room on a newly created lower ground floor in her care home. Having created the new floor, the care home sought to separate residents so that those who had ‘nursing’ needs above usual dementia support, stayed on the original floor. Nine residents including my mother were moved … Continue reading Changing Rooms
The worst part of every encounter with my mother comes when it is time to say goodbye. I sometimes stay at the care home much longer than I planned, trying to find the best moment to go. When the time comes she often seems surprised, and asks, ‘You’re not leaving me here on my own, … Continue reading How to Say Goodbye