Settling in

I am exhausted today, despite the decent night of sleep. I guess it’s catching up with me a little bit, all this fuss over Mom. I did go back to work. And got some work done. But I also went to the Alz center to fill out the required admission paperwork. When I got there, Mom was just entering the lobby. “Isn’t this amazing,” she said when she saw me. The activities director, meeting me for the paperwork, said Mom had attended church this morning. I sat Mom on the couch in the lobby and said I would be meeting with Meg and would come out and visit Mom a little later.

An hour later, I emerged and found Mom on that same couch in the lobby, sound asleep.

Mom and dog/cat take a little morning nap.

Mom and dog/cat take a little morning nap.

I figure if she can relax enough to fall asleep in this public space, she is feeling pretty good. Two different staff members have told me about seeing Mom plop onto the same couch. The business manager who happened to be in on Sunday said at one point Mom had her legs hoisted over an arm of the couch and was lying on her back, fast asleep. This cracks me up. Mom really never met a couch she didn’t like. Today, I woke her up and combed her hair and walked her into lunch before I left.

Saturday and Sunday visits went well. I got all of Mom’s clothes and belongings labeled with her name. I painted her nails on Saturday and we took a walk in the secure outdoor area. She also played a little shuffleboard. On Sunday, she played a little game knocking balloons around with those swimming noodle toys, and later, we watched Jackie Gleason on TV in the program area for a little while. I said I needed to get going to the grocery store and she said, “Go ahead and do what you need to do” and said she would be fine staying there and watching TV. She has said she’s afraid of getting lost, that she is afraid in general. But she isn’t really saying these things with the feeling that she had before when she was making complaints about moving. Perhaps she is saying them out of habit now. But she does not seem fretful. Staff report that her appetite is very good – and she does not eat as well when she is stressed, I have found. A receptionist saw her walking around and sitting in the lobby Saturday with a friend, though I don’t think she remembered doing that by the time I showed up later that day. I imagine she feels uneasy sometimes, that she knows she’s someplace new. But it is not causing the profound anxiety that she had at the other nursing home, where she was agitated so much of the time. As Patrick says, it wasn’t just the administrator at Whetstone telling us that it wasn’t working out with Mom; Mom was telling us, too, in the only way she knew how.

7 comments so far

  1. Hellpellet on

    It’s good to hear your Mom is transitioning so nicely to her new place.

  2. Elizabeth on

    Emily, you are truly amazing. I just got caught up with everything after being away for a few days – I’m so sorry that everything ended so hastily and messily with the previous place, but this center sounds like it will be such a better fit for all of you. So glad to hear that things are settling down, especially so quickly, and I hope you and Patrick are able to finally get a little rest from all the hubbub. Also, a few days ago I saw a little girl at a park carrying the same stuffed animal as dog/cat, and it made me instantly well up a little. I hope everything continues to go well; I’m thinking of you.

  3. momsbrain on

    Hi, HP! I hope your grandmother is doing OK, as well.

    Elizabeth, that is so cute about dog/cat. We got him at Kohl’s so I suppose there are thousands of them out there… Thanks for thinking of us. Finally, we think we are nearing something resembling normal – as normal as it can get, anyhow! 🙂

  4. Laura on

    Great photo! It is so true that Mom never met a couch she didn’t like. Those naps could become a habit. Hopefully that is o.k. She probably misses having a couch so has adopted that one. I just love Patrick’s insight about Mom telling us Whetstone wasn’t working out the only way she knew how!!

  5. melinda on

    I never liked that place – even when my mother worked there up until 1990 – I am glad your mom is in a better facility! Take care!

  6. Jeff on

    I like the picture too. I agree that she must be relaxed if she can just grab a nap in a public place.
    Glad that dog/cat returned. Is there a story about that?

  7. momsbrain on

    Melinda – Most of the staff at Whetstone were great. But the administration…not so much. I hope your Mom’s experience there was good.

    Jeff, if there is a story about dog/cat, I don’t know it. My neighbor, the social worker, saw Mom yesterday and she had him with her, and by now staff should know he belongs with her. She forgets about him sometimes even though he is very important to her.

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