Sunday, September 9, 2012

It’s so interesting…

I saw a story on the news this morning about a man with dementia, living in a nursing home, who, although unable to communicate, seemed to be comforting one of the other residents.  The gentleman’s son finally realized that his father, a medic in WWII, was comforting another resident who had been the cook for his unit in WWII.  Seems the cook was injured during the war and the medic took care of him.  Somehow his demented mind recognized the long ago friend!

You just never know what might trigger something in the mind of someone with dementia.  Recently, one of the aides (CNAs) in Mom’s ALF decided to move to Florida and go to school.  This CNA, Whitney, was an integral part of the staff so the decision caused quite a stir.
One day when I was visiting, Mom told me that she would be leaving for Florida soon because “they” wanted to try it out down there for awhile.  Grandma and Grandpa moved to Florida with her when she was little to try and make a life there.  They found they didn’t like it so they moved back.  I thought that she was just flashing back to that time of her life so didn’t think anything of it.  I just asked if she was going with Grandma and Grandpa and she looked a little confused and responded, “I guess so.”
It wasn’t until later that I learned about Whitney’s move and, of course, there had been some discussion of it.  Mom obviously overheard and thought that “they”, probably Tina, Whitney and Mom, were heading to Florida to “try it out”.
Since then, Whitney left and the residents have been enduring the process of finding the new CNA that will fit into the “family” there.  In the past, if Mom’s CNA, Tina, was off, quite often Whitney was working and took care of Mom.  Now if Tina is not there, there is no Whitney to cover and I have found reasons to be concerned about Mom’s care.
I have raised my concerns with management and they have asked for patience while they work out the staffing plan.  I can only hope that they will find a solution that will again make me feel that the Mom is well cared for when Tina is not there.
The good news is Mom is still happy.  I find her confused more often but in spite of that she still seems content.
Mom's awake and ready to play noodle ball!