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A nice surprise

A friendly ear
DrFfybes
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A nice surprise

#433928

Postby DrFfybes » August 11th, 2021, 9:28 am

As much on here understandably veers towards the problems of life, I thought 'd share something of a pleasant surprise, perhaps even a shock.

Mum (90) is starting with dementia, very limited mobility, and was going stir crazy in her flat for the last 15 months. In March 2020 she had a heart attack and stroke, and went into respite for a couple of week, which turned into 14 weeks of lockdown with no visitors, limited mixing, and no way for us to get a care package in place for her in the flat.

She is virtually flat-bound, walks with a frame, can't manage steps, only sees neighbours through the window until recently, etc etc.
As things have opened up, she has become aware that people can go out, and really missed her friends as the 'wrinklies' meetings were not going ahead. Her brother's partner is in a home, and he said it was nice, so she eventually said she would like to try it, and last Monday we took her in for 2 weeks' respite care.

I try and ring every coupe of days, as does my sister, but at a 2 hour drive away and visiting still restricted to one person I haven't seen her. There have been the odd grumblings on the phone, a bit chilly, bed too hard, garlic bread (which she hates) with one of the meals, minor stuff. Last night on the phone they dragged her out of a Judy Garland film to talk to me (with her 'shampaign' cocktail) and she asked "Well, how long am I in here for?".

I feared the novelty had worn off.

"2 weeks", I said, "I'm coming to rescue you on Monday but I can come tomorrow if you want" (we still have the home care package in place).

"Oh no, I don't want to go back to that flat, I'm staying here. I have a nice room over the garden and if I go home and come back again I might end up on the road side and I don't want that".

So, that seems to be that. Going up this afternoon anyway to check the flat and talk to the Home about options, and I think we will take her back to the flat for a week anyway as we have health visits, family coming to see her (which is difficult in the home with the testing etc required), and nails and hair booked in.

Then probably back to the Home and we'll give it a couple of months then think about selling the flat.
Under PoA.
So expect to see me here ranting in November :)

Paul

sg31
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Re: A nice surprise

#433976

Postby sg31 » August 11th, 2021, 10:52 am

What a fantastic outcome, everyone is happy. You managed the situation very well.

pje16
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Re: A nice surprise

#433982

Postby pje16 » August 11th, 2021, 11:01 am

First thing to say is that is seem as your mum is a fighter and surviver - well done her
It's good that you have a sister as I went through the same (dementia) with my mum and having my brother to discuss it with was very helpful, as only the chidren are in the same boat (friends, as good as they are, not in the same position)
Please come back and rant whenver you feel like it

Sunnypad
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Re: A nice surprise

#434439

Postby Sunnypad » August 12th, 2021, 8:04 pm

Glad that worked out DrF

Have asked mods if my thread can be repurposed as a support thread for people caring for EPs.

Clariman
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Re: A nice surprise

#434449

Postby Clariman » August 12th, 2021, 9:46 pm

Im glad it all worked for you. Care homes aren't all the awful places that many fear. After my mum died, my siblings and I took it in turns to stay with dad, who had Parkinsons, while we worked out whether he could live independently with support.

After a few months it became clear he couldn't so we took him to visit a fabulous care home where he was welcomed. At the end of the visit the owner of the home asked my dad how his visit was and whether he would come to stay, he replied, "I rather think I shall". He had 3 very happy years there.

sg31
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Re: A nice surprise

#434508

Postby sg31 » August 13th, 2021, 10:34 am

Clariman wrote:Im glad it all worked for you. Care homes aren't all the awful places that many fear. After my mum died, my siblings and I took it in turns to stay with dad, who had Parkinsons, while we worked out whether he could live independently with support.

After a few months it became clear he couldn't so we took him to visit a fabulous care home where he was welcomed. At the end of the visit the owner of the home asked my dad how his visit was and whether he would come to stay, he replied, "I rather think I shall". He had 3 very happy years there.

The vast majority of care homes cater for those with dementia. That can present a problem if your elderly parents don't have dementia. My sister and I visited every care home in Brighton when we needed a home for Mum, there was only one that didn't have a majority of dementia sufferers and that one was more 'assisted living' than care home. Mum did have dementia so it wasn't an issue in our case.

When my wifes mother needed a care home we were no longer in Brighton so we looked at several homes in this area. This time MIL didn't have dementia. Again most homes were mainly for dementia patients, we found one that had seperate floors for dementia and none dementia. There was some mixing at meal times but they were generally apart.

It can be very difficult for an elderly none dementia person to live among dementia patients. MIL was horrified at the idea although she did become friends with dementia sufferers as time went by. She just needed time to adjust and accept.

DrFfybes
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Re: A nice surprise

#435248

Postby DrFfybes » August 16th, 2021, 11:53 pm

Thanks all.

We popped over last Weds to discuss it with mum and the home, then went back today to take her to the flat to collect some more clothes and a few pictures, sort out the medicines properly, etc etc.

Having been back to the flat she said she did like it, but knows she needs more help and was frightened in the flat on her own at night. She also realises her mobility isn't improving, so whilst there are things she doesn't like about the home, on balance she knows she is better off there and it is less work/worry for us. Whilst at home a couple of neighbours popped down. Both were amazed at how much better she looked and how much more alert and chatty she was. I guess due to a combination of eating proper meals and adequate hydration, neither easy to monitor with a 1 hour visit when she sleeps the rest of the time.

In the flat she was always on the phone, to family or friends. In the care home she has declined the offer of a phone in her room, and actually told the carers she didn't want to talk to someone when they rang her as she was busy (playing snakes and ladders).

I need to sort out a few things now, Council Tax, TV licence, emergency call pendant, maybe the phone, mail redirect, etc etc, but no massive rush. She's actually quite keen to get the flat sold, but we're not sure why. All we can think of is that it removes the option/temptation to go back.

Still seems a bit surreal.

Paul

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Re: A nice surprise

#435400

Postby Loup321 » August 17th, 2021, 3:08 pm

DrFfybes wrote:I need to sort out a few things now, Council Tax, TV licence, emergency call pendant, maybe the phone, mail redirect, etc etc, but no massive rush. She's actually quite keen to get the flat sold, but we're not sure why. All we can think of is that it removes the option/temptation to go back.


Completely practical note. Check whether you want to sort out the Council Tax straight away. Your mother may have been getting a single person discount, and the Council may charge full whack for an empty property. Councils can choose whether or not to give a discount on empty properties, or some even apply a surcharge if it's empty for a while. Once you have checked, you might want to accidentally not tell them for a couple of months.

didds
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Re: A nice surprise

#435439

Postby didds » August 17th, 2021, 4:40 pm

alternatively find somebody you trust and move in. now its still a one person dwelling with discount.

even better if they are on benefits or in full time education...

didds

pje16
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Re: A nice surprise

#435442

Postby pje16 » August 17th, 2021, 4:53 pm

DrFfybes wrote:Thanks all.
In the flat she was always on the phone, to family or friends. In the care home she has declined the offer of a phone in her room, and actually told the carers she didn't want to talk to someone when they rang her as she was busy (playing snakes and ladders).

Thanks for the update
Be prepared to get her a phone, ask her again, dementia sufferers don't always say what they mean
My mum (RIP) would often say 'No' when she really meant 'Yes'

monabri
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Re: A nice surprise

#435447

Postby monabri » August 17th, 2021, 5:10 pm

Emergency call pendant...there is also a wrist worn fall sensor alarm. My mother in law is getting one soon ( she has the pendant)...we've been told that it is a no cost option.

DrFfybes
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Re: A nice surprise

#435455

Postby DrFfybes » August 17th, 2021, 5:45 pm

Loup321 wrote:Completely practical note. Check whether you want to sort out the Council Tax straight away. Your mother may have been getting a single person discount, and the Council may charge full whack for an empty property. Councils can choose whether or not to give a discount on empty properties, or some even apply a surcharge if it's empty for a while. Once you have checked, you might want to accidentally not tell them for a couple of months.


Thanks - I did look before I leapt as it seems to depend on the Authority :)

She is in Oldham, and whilst their website is suitably vague about timescales, it does say..

"There is an exemption for unoccupied dwellings where the person who would be liable for Council Tax has left to live in a hospital, residential care home or hostel.

The person's main residence must be a hospital, care home or hostel."


So I take that to mean no tax is payable, at least for a while anyway :)

Also when unfurnished the first month is free, then 6 months at 75%, so same as now. Hopefully by then it will be sold.

Cancelling the TV licence was remarkably easy. Reducing energy and water payments not so much as understandably they want a pattern of reduced use before amending direct debits.

Paul


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