1. Pete1

    Pete1 Registered User

    Jul 16, 2019
    227
    Male
    Hi @anxious annie, when I realised Mum could not longer live safely at home with a significant care package I took the decision for residential care. We did visit the home together and I also (with permission of the accompanying manager) took pictures to show Mum later (by the time we got home she had no recollection of the visit), it was actually quite reassuring for her seeing the pictures with me telling her what other activities they had. Like @canary Mum actually had a much richer quality of life with more contact and activities, and to my surprise improved quite significantly (no longer agitated/frightened and put on weight that she had lost). I ended up kicking myself that I had vehemently resisted this option for sometime as it wasn't something, in her healthy state, that Mum wanted as she had experienced my Dad in residential care with dementia. What I will say, the relief for me personally was absolutely huge - for the year before I slept with my phone by my side (calls at three in the morning etc) and the constant worry of whether she was safe had actually made me quite poorly, which in the eye of the storm I had refused to recognise, I visited her every day in the care home and it was (on the whole) a pleasant experience where I could chat and show her photos and old family films without the worry of having to spend my time reassuring and sorting problems. I hope all goes well on Thursday, keep posting.
     
  2. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,773
    Female
    South coast
    I guess it depends what sort of care home it is. If its one for frail elderly people where dementia isnt an issue, they may have to ask this. Most care homes who have lots of experience with dementia will know that if asked, most people with dementia will say no. If they wont take her because she wont agree to go, then they probably wouldnt be able to meet her needs anyway.
     
  3. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Hi Pete
    Thank you for your post, it shone a positive light on life in a care home. Yes, like you were, I am always worried when the phone goes and anxious if I can't get hold of mum. I have asked the home if they can bring some photos and schedule of their activities as I think mum will be interested in this as she is lonely. Thanks for suggesting photos. I will update on Thursday. Fingers crossed it goes well.
     
  4. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Hi Canary
    Thank you for your reply. The home does have residents with dementia, so perhaps I am worrying needlessly, and there won't be an issue with mums comments.
     
  5. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Well I just couldn't believe it, but when the assessor asked mum how she would feel about coming to the care home to try the different activities as she knew mum was often lonely, mum said yes, ok!!! Everything else went well so we have a move in date for next Tuesday. She thinks it's for a week , so not sure how things will go further down the line, but she doesn't have a concept of time now so we hope we can string it out. Also I'm not sure yet how we'll manage to get her there, but at least the first hurdle is over.
    She goes to a day centre on Monday so my sister and i will move most of her things in whilst she is there. It's staring to get real now and quite emotional now to think that this will be her last weekend in the house she has lived in for so many years.
     
  6. Pete1

    Pete1 Registered User

    Jul 16, 2019
    227
    Male
    Good Morning @anxious annie, firstly that is great news for your Mum and the start of greater peace of mind for you and your family. It often can take a little while to settle into the new surroundings and routines.

    I know what you mean, reality suddenly bites. I know I felt incredibly sad when I took Mum from her bungalow to the Care Home, but put on a brave face for Mum. I had set the room up before she moved in so there were a lot of personal effects such as photos etc to make it feel more welcoming. Mum used to ask occasionally at first how long am I staying for, I used to just say are they looking after you well here Mum? 'Oh yes, they are lovely'...and move the subject on. After a little while she didn't really remember the bungalow.

    I hope the move goes well, take care of yourself.
     
  7. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Hi Pete
    Thank you for your advice and good wishes. I will update after the move!
     
  8. Helly68

    Helly68 Registered User

    Mar 12, 2018
    469
    On the day, try to remain positive and upbeat, in front of your Mum. When we first took my Mum, the manager took her off for a cup of tea whilst we sorted out her things. If they haven't told you already, label any clothing or other personal items - sewn in labels, iron on or sharpie marker for books, shoes etc
    When you leave her, get her settled for lunch and quietly go. Don't say goodbye. I left her a couple of days to settle in before visiting and always left before a meal or activity in the early days. Try to avod taking any valuable items.
    After settling her in, give yourself time to be upset. Although Mummy settled in well, a lot of things hit me at once after she went into a care home so be prepared for this and recognise that she might actually find it easier than you.
    Fingers crossed.
     
  9. Sirena

    Sirena Registered User

    Feb 27, 2018
    1,861
    Female
    What a brilliant result - the assessor was clearly experienced and knew how to get a 'yes' out of her! I have my fingers crossed it all goes well.

    Good advice from Helly. Be prepared with labelling, absolutely everything needs to be labelled, clothes, shoes, all personal possessions. I used iron-on labels for clothes and Stickins (from Amazon) for shoes, photoframes, cuddly toys. If she wears glasses, there needs to be a way of identifying them. Don't take in anything 'precious' - the residents have no concept of personal possessions, if something is put down they pick it up and take it (so don't leave your handbag unattended!)
     
  10. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Hi , Helly and Sirena
    Thank you for all your advice. Mum has just gone to bed so I am going to get on with more labelling.
    Yes, am not going to take in anything valuable. Mostly clothes and photos. Will get a better idea when we move things in on Monday.
     
  11. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Hi All
    I took mum to her Day centre yesterday, and explained about mum moving into care. They were lovely, reassuring me we'd made the right decision. So we collected her in the afternoon we went straight to the home (reminded mum she was having a short stay to try the activities whilst we had the decorators in her house. We had set her room up on Monday.
    All went well, we showed mum her room and then took her to the lounge and joined in with a crossword puzzle. We left mum in the dining room, cbatting to the others at her table. We got out of the door and my sister and I dissolved into tears.
    We have been back this afternoon. Mum has had a bath, hair washed and blow dry, and is wearing clean clothes!! She did ask where she was and when she was going home, but distracted when tea and biscuits came round and we left.
    I will call in tomorrow morning before we drive back home and my sister will go in next week and update me. There is a 4 week trial, so I will go back just before then, and hope things are still ok. I can ring to check, and speak to mum, and my sister will pop in for short visits.
     
  12. Pete1

    Pete1 Registered User

    Jul 16, 2019
    227
    Male
    Hi @anxious annie, what a traumatic day for you and your sister, it always is there's no easy way round it. I hope your Mum settles in. It will certainly give you and your sister peace of mind. Take it easy this evening, and try not to worry about Mum settling. All the best, take care.
     
  13. Sirena

    Sirena Registered User

    Feb 27, 2018
    1,861
    Female
    That sounds a really good result, well done - while it is upsetting it must also be good to see that she is safe, clean, and content. Fingers crossed it continues to go well. I think every CH has a 4 week trial period, I know my mother's does - I think it's to check they really can meet her needs once they get to know her.
     
  14. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Hi Pete and Sirena
    Thank you for your good wishes.
    All was ok this morning when I called in before my journey home.. Mum had been up in the night and wandered about the corridor but there is an alarm mat to alert staff and they just said she will obviously be disorientated for a while . She had eaten breakfast and was in the lounge. She asked again about going home but I just said the decorators were starting. She seemed to accept this and later was encouraged to join in with a card game with staff and other residents so I left.
    I will wait for further developments when my sister goes in next week.
     
  15. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,773
    Female
    South coast
    This all sounds very positive
    :)
     
  16. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    5,305
    Female
    Chester
    That sounds like the 2 of you have chosen a care home that understands the needs of dementia if it deals with the wandering like that.

    Well done on getting to this stage.
     
  17. Pete1

    Pete1 Registered User

    Jul 16, 2019
    227
    Male
    Good Evening @anxious annie, how are you and your sister feeling today? It sounds a positive start from a care perspective, it will take a while for Mum to settle I'm sure - and there will be ups and downs.
     
  18. Sirena

    Sirena Registered User

    Feb 27, 2018
    1,861
    Female
    The care home sounds really good, they are doing all they can to keep her safe and help her to settle. My mother wandered around and wouldn't sleep for the first few days at the care home, I don't think it's unusual - it's such an unfamiliar environment. My mother is very content there now but she still wanders around a lot of the time, she just likes to keep moving!
     
  19. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Everything seems to be going ok. I phoned this morning for a quick update ( I didn't speak with mum, but will do so next week if things are ok after my sister has been in.) Staff seem lovely and caring.
    The one I spoke to this morning said mum had been up a few times in the night and wandered outside, once going into another resident's room, but they didn't seem phased and said that was a common thing!!). She is sleeping, but often gets up to the toilet in the night, she did this at home too, and I think this is when she then wanders off.
    She was happily engaged in a game of charades when I phoned and is eating well. They have a keyboard man in this afternoon for a sing a long which mum will love. I am sure she is enjoying the company as she did complain of being lonely towards her time at home.
    My sister and I are feeling such a relief from the worry of something happening to mum ( having a fall, getting ill etc) and her being alone and us not knowing. It gives us peace of mind to know someone is there 24/7 for her. She is also warm, clean, well fed and enjoying company.
    I phoned some of her "friends" to tell them of the move , and the reaction tended to be along the lines of, surely she wasn't that bad, she seemed ok when I last saw her! I got fed up of it in the end and replied , yes she's deteriorated significantly this last year and wasn't safe at home and we would never have forgiven ourselves if something happened. I did say that they could still visit...... that's not going to happen I'm sure. Mum's one friend who has taken her out for lunch on a regular basis knows how things are and said we had made the right decision.
    I shall be up to visit mid November, just before the 4 week trial period is up, and hoping things continue to improve. I will update on progress/developments when i hear from my sister or I phone in. I don't want to be a nuisance and phone too often.
    Thank you to everyone for your support and advice with the move.
     
  20. Pete1

    Pete1 Registered User

    Jul 16, 2019
    227
    Male
    Hi @anxious annie, from what you have described it is definitely the best thing for your Mum. Hopefully as the staff get to know her routines (such as night time wandering) they can adapt and ensure that all staff are aware. I know exactly where you are coming from regarding having peace of mind - it is a constant worry when you realise that your loved one is no longer safe, I have to say I didn't realise how much stress it did actually place until Mum went in to residential care. As I said previously it was a much richer life for my Mum being in residential care as there were activities and also she had the privacy of her own room to watch TV and have meals if she so wanted (and often she did). Your Mum will probably get more used to the routines of the home and settle in, although it sounds as though she is benefiting already. All the best.
     

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