You’re Fired!

Oh what a laugh I had re-reading the last entry where I said if we had Amy every day we’d be fine. Well, we had Amy for a lot of the days, and Surprise! Mom ended up with two sores on her bum–one of the reasons we hired additional help was to prevent such sores. The joke’s on us, and the service is cancelled.

Sunday, my husband and I went to Bickford; he visited with Dad, while I checked on Mom. She was in bed, under the covers, and when I asked if she wanted to get up to visit with me she said, “Oh, I’m just so tired.” I told her it was OK, she didn’t need to get up, and, noticing the baby monitor was out of the room, went out to speak to the caretaker for the day. Instead, I was met by one of the long-term, reliable, kind aides who works for Bickford. She had the baby monitor. Uh…whaaaa?! S. told me that she’d seen a little problem in the sunroom, with Mom telling A. to get away from her, and then Mom went out the door to courtyard, was shaking and upset. S. said she told A. she needed a break, and took the monitor. Where was A.? Missing, for the moment. Had she left the building? We didn’t know, but S. said I needed to talk to the cook. More bad news, eh? Apparently, A. had announced that she hated “that f….g dog.” She was met with a loving defense of our sweet doggie from the cook and others. In essence, A. heard that Coco was part of the family, so back off.

Yesterday, Monday, after I heard all this, A. mentioned to me that she wanted to find a nice dog like Coco for her kids. Uh-huh, I thought. Later, Mom said, “Everybody’s mad at me.” This was the second time I’d heard her say something like this, which concerned me–I’d never heard her say that in the past. I assured her that I wasn’t mad at her, A. said she wasn’t, and Mom looked at me and said, “She’s is mad,” sotto voce. Today I spoke to a counselor who said that the things I was hearing and seeing were red flags, that Mom was telling me the truth, and that we needed to terminate before things escalated. I called my sister, and she had just discovered the sores on Mom’s rear–the last straw as far as she was concerned. So I called this afternoon and terminated the service. I won’t be recommending them.

New plan: Mom’s long-time companion, who takes her out twice a week for coffee and a ride around familiar places in Midland, has some extra time, and wondered if we could use her more. Could we! Mom loves her and considers her a friend. So F. is coming tomorrow from 10-4, and then we’ll see if F wants to continue or add time. Meanwhile, we’re going back to all Bickford when F. is not there. There is hope that we may be able to hire some extra monitoring for Mom through Bickford, and meanwhile, they will check on Mom more often, and make sure that she has dry briefs at least every two hours, while tending to the sores.

I realize more all the time how trial-and-error (emphasis on error!) taking care of Mom’s needs is. All we can do is keep trying to meet her needs, which includes how she feels about her caretakers. Well, at least she won’t have to deal with A. anymore, and my hope is that, in the midst of her less-than-satisfactory life, she at least feel safe and peaceful.

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