March 11th, 2020


Old age is no place for sissies

"I think I want to go into a care home."

These are the words Mum spoke this morning. She had locked herself out for the umpteenth time this month, prompting a neighbour to call me at work, and me to call everyone else on the very short list of people who have a key to Mum's, which solved the problem in the short term, but...

In recent months, I have had several calls from the police, informing me that they have encountered my mother in the streets, half-dressed, cold, and very confused; unable to tell them where she lived; and that they're making her comfortable at the station, or in a day centre, or have released her into the care of a neighbour who happened to be passing.

I have had calls from her carers, telling me she has gone AWOL, and nobody's seen her or has any idea where she might be, and can I call the police?

I have had calls from neighbours, telling me she's locked herself out AGAIN, and this really can't go on like this for much longer.

But up until now, Mum has resisted the idea of moving into residential care. Even though she can barely walk, can't read the clock, can't work out how to use the telephone, can't take care of herself, and complains of being lonely, the idea of going into a home was anathema to her.

Although it's entirely possible that by tomorrow she'll have forgotten what she's said, I'm going to start to set the wheels in motion on my mother's final house move.