Nursing Home

By White Crow

Published: 26 May, 2024

Sunday

Today’s visit was mostly about a video call with Brother and his wife. I’d tried to time it so that residents’ lunches were finished and cleared away, staff lunches had been had and the changes for bed-bound residents were done. Bit of a hiccup straight away though. I couldn’t get in.

When Sean let me in he told me that Lily had been trying to get out of the front door and she’d turned the bolt on the inside. Then, when I’d got to Mum, she was still being changed so I had a quick chat with Reggie. He will be joining the team at Beck House and he’ll be starting there a couple of weeks before Mum moves. It sounds like most people his level and lower will be transferring over. Only one or two will take the chance to move elsewhere so there’ll be plenty of familiar faces for Mum.

Mum was a lot brighter today than she’s been for ages and she appreciated being told that. She did manage to get in a quick moan though.

“Nobody came to see me yesterday”

“I was here though. I come to see you every day and I was here yesterday too”

“Were you!? I must’ve been asleep.”

“No Mum, we had a long chat yesterday”

Mistake. Big mistake. She looked quite taken aback and upset that she had no memory of it whatsoever.

I changed the subject as soon as I realised what I’d done. Time to get Brother on a WhatsApp call. Set volume and screen brightness to maximum.

“Let’s see if we can get them on the phone, eh?

I thought the call went really well. Mum really enjoyed it. There was plenty of laughter and she stayed engaged the whole time. A lot of what she said was very quiet and indistinct and I translated as best I could (which wasn’t very much). Having started the call quite brightly Mum was clearly flagging after 25 minutes so we ended it there.

After the call she spent some time earnestly explaining her instructions and requirements for the move. I think these were the standard concerns she has during every Sleepy/Active cycle and not related to The Actual Move. Just before I left she went through a normal “Don’t leave me on me own”/”I hate being on me own” routine.

I saw Sean and Reggie again on my way out. Reggie was astounded that Mum coped so well with a video call. Sean said that Mum had been a bit up and down today. Sleeping for long periods. So we were lucky to have caught her during such a good spell.

Sean also gave an insight into Mum’s diet. She had the normal porridge for breakfast and at lunch she had a cup of soup and the pudding but she refused the main course. And that’s normal. If she’s fed anything that’s even slightly chewy she will spit it out and refuse the rest. Thinking back to last summer, that’s what put an end to the fruit salad I used to take in for her. There was a slightly stringy bit of mango one day and she spat it out. After that she was suspicious of everything in the pot and the next day she refused the lot. I regularly ask her if her teeth are alright and she always denies there being a problem. I don’t know what the problem is but she’s effectively existing on stodge.

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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