This last week has been busy and I am feeling rather behind with things and tired. This is something caregivers regularly face and it is just part of it although others may think we are 'lazy'. Don't worry about how others view it a caregiver can only do their best to support their loved ones.
On Monday I had meetings at my mother's home regarding their wish to move her to another facility. As the first meeting was at 9.30 I had to get George's caregiver to come an hour early so we could get there in time. This meant that I had to get him up earlier and give him breakfast etc and have everything ready for the caregiver. I took him with me to the home as it was going to be a long morning. I did not want to be distracted by worrying about how he was.
The first meeting was arranged for my sister and the staff at the home. This was so they could clarify to her the reasoning behind this move. I had told our family members what I had been told but was unable to justify their reasoning and answer their questions so felt it was better that she got it from them. The next meeting was with a woman from the hospital board who assesses mum to see what is going to happen. She had wanted to come the week before but as my sister was in NZ and only in Christchurch that Monday they changed things around to accommodate her being able to attend which was great. Several things that I certainly was unaware of before all this: An EPA can be superseded by the hospital board. If they want to do something that the family does not want they are able to. An assessment is done through notes and not necessarily from people who see the person a lot. The doctor who sees mum for about 5 mins every 3 months had written incorrect statements relating to her abilities at this point but only seeing her for such a little time makes it impossible for him to know. The two staff members who were there; one has only been at the home for a couple of months and had 'cared' for mum one morning, the other used to have a lot to do with mum (over a year ago) but has been working in another part of the home since then. I am not sure how valid anything they could say would be. I see mum twice each week but was not asked about anything. My sister spoke about how she found mum when she came over to see her and showed videos and photos of mum. The person from the hospital board knew that the wishes of the family were for her to stay where she was and that is what is happening. It was nice that there were three people there to voice Mum's wishes; my sister, the Patient Advocate and me.
On Tuesday I took George to Harakeke club and then my sister and her husband to the airport before teaching a small boy with his reading. It was lovely to catch up with my sister while she was here. She spent a lot of time going to see mum which meant that there were two visits I didn't need to do while she was here.
On Wednesday I spent about 3 hours with the accountant going over mum's George's and my books for the financial year and then I had to get more continence pants for him.
Thursday I dropped George at Harakeke and went to have coffee with some women I used to work with which was lovely.
On Friday we visit a friend who is unable to walk properly at the moment due to spinal problems and he therefore stays home by himself during the day. We go to chat and keep his mind off the pain etc. His wife is one who visits Mum each week so I feel that in some ways this pays her back and also George and the husband enjoy chatting. That afternoon I took George to East side Alzheimer's group. All these things he does is for socialisation which helps with the Alzheimer's. Friday morning I need to change the bed as George had wet it.
Today I saw Mum this morning. I dress George at the weekends. I leave George at home with a DVD on and morning tea on the bench and then get him lunch as soon as I get in. Then I get on with washing and other things here.
I am now putting George's onsie on back the front to try to stop him getting out of it during the night (last four nights) so far success....
I have managed to get a small amount of gardening done and luckily the lawns were done not long ago and don't need to be done again yet.