Nursing Home

By Nick Gilmore

Published: 2 Feb, 2024

Friday

I was late getting to Mum and she’d already been changed and readied for the night. She was just dozing though and came to as I walked in the room. Something terrible was playing on Alexa so I stopped it in order to be able to hear Mum properly.

“Thank goodness for that. That blimmin’ thing’s been on all day”

I check Alexa Activity. It’s been on just over an hour.

A hand emerged from under her blanket to take mine.

“Ooh! Blimey! You’re cold!”

“I always am when I get here. I keep saying the only reason I come here is to warm up”

She had a good laugh at that. In fact, she laughed quite a lot during the visit. She was chatty and engaged. Interested to hear about our reformed dog and how well she behaved on our walks. We’re coming up to The Dog’s annual booster injection so we’re stopping in at the vet to get her accustomed to being there with nothing nasty happening. She weighs in at 21.5Kg so carrying a little winter weight. She’ll run that off when the weather’s warm enough for her to go in the water.

Mum’s chat wasn’t confined to me. She was talking to someone next to her too and kept asking me who it was. She could see birds in the room. I was in the process of turning round to point at the pictures on the wall behind me but she said they were in front of me.

Then I had to do an inventory of all the stuff in her room so she could get a list of what was and what wasn’t going back with her to Ponders End.

Glenys arrived with the evening meds. They’re now crushed up and dissolved in water. The mix-them-in-yoghurt trick no longer works. She still manages to spit them out if they’re remotely intact. She came pretty close to spitting the noxious liquid out too but they were eventually swallowed.

The room was stiflingly hot. Even Mum was hot. She pushed off the bedding and complainsed she was itchy. Usually, it’s her back that’s itchy and I have to scratch it for her. Today, it was her tummy and she’d scratched enough to leave red marks. I’m told to sort it. I remembered there was some moisturiser in amongst her kit and put a few drops on the affected area.

“There. Can you rub that in?”

“You do it”

So I did. I’d just finished washing my hands when she started scratching somewhere else.

“Shall I put some more on?”

“Yeah”

“Better?”

“Ooh, that’s nice and cold. That’s much better. Much better”

She wasn’t interested in the telly so we had another couple of chapters of Father Okoli until she fell asleep. That was until I got up to go. Then she was wide awake again.

Bloody hell

Author’s Note

My Mum is in a nursing home in a small village in the Thames Valley. The photo is not of the home. I used an AI image generator to give the reader some idea of the home she’s in.

All, some or maybe even none (you’ll never know!) of the names have been changed to protect privacy and hide real identities. If you think you recognise someone then let me know and I’ll edit the post or remove it entirely

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