Nursing Home

By Nick Gilmore

Published: 4 Jul, 2024

Thursday

Yet another long day for Lesley with another visit to her dad.

Admittedly, I got to Mum way later than was ideal but she was asleep when I got to The Home. The night shift were busy getting residents off to bed.

I did the standard Unresponsive Mum test and got no response but she was doing her Slow Motion Fidgeting thing so she wasn’t completely gone. My guess was that this was her just transitioning from Active Mum to Sleepy Mum I did an extra test to see if there was any response when I held her hand. There was – she turned away from me.

I took the hint and left her to it.

But if this was Mum going into a hypoactive state it did seem oddly quick. It may be down to the upheaval of the move of course but this felt like a five-day cycle when it was reliably seven days. And if yesterday had been Mum at Peak Active then it had been a very low-key peak. It was so low-key that I didn’t even recognise it was a peak.

It’s a bit soon to be concerned. I need to look back to how Mum coped with previous moves and see what sort of pattern she settles down into in the next couple of weeks.

While I’d been trying, and failing, to get a response out of Mum I had heard Eleanor out in the corridor pleading with the night shift.

“Can somebody please help me!? I need something for my little ones to eat!!”

I left Mum to speak to Eleanor and found her standing in the corridor gripping the handrail as she wobbled precariously.

“Hello Eleanor! Are you alright? Where’s your walking frame gone?”

“I don’t know where it is. Why won’t anybody help me!?”

We were standing outside her room. Her walking frame was in her room, by her bed, in the middle of all her soft toys and it had her bag hanging on it. She seemed not to be able to recognise any of it.

“OK, well, let’s get your walking frame sorted first. Once you’re safe we can start looking for some food for your little ones.”

“Alright”

“Have a look at this! There’s a frame there…”

“That’s not mine”

“It looks like yours though”

“IT’S NOT MINE!”

“You keep a lookout. I’ll go in and nick it for you! What do you reckon?”

“YOU CAN’T DO THAT!!”

“Why not?”

“She’ll go mad if someone’s taken her frame!”

Bless her.

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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