I’m going to keep this brief (for me) because I don’t have the heart for a longer version. Mum had a stroke just over two weeks ago and ended up in Base Hospital initially, where she had a fall; not their fault I hasten to add. Once they were sure it was a stroke, and that she was doing okay, they moved her back to Hawera Hospital for rehab.
Mum’s speech is fine, but her swallow reflex might be a bit dodgy; she can’t eat bread or similar for now. Her brain is okay, but there are certainly holes in both logic and memory from time to time. That may get better over time. She walks okay, but is always on a walker now, not just a walking stick. The biggest hurdle was transferring from bed or chair to walker and back but she has that sorted now.
However, she is very frail and has lost all confidence, and needs support to go to the toilet etc as she is scared of falling – I think her eyesight got worse with the stroke too. She is up 3 or 4 times a night so it’s quite a challenge.
Mum has decided that she no longer feels safe being at home alone in the afternoons when we’re at work, and also doesn’t want Tony and I having to get up that often at night. She has chosen to go into Te Mahana Resthome, where she was going for two days day care each week, on a permanent basis. In theory, if she’s a lot better after a month, she can try coming home but I honestly think the most she’ll manage is some Sundays and Mondays when I’m not at work.
Tony and I feel sad it has come to this; we all wanted her to stay with us till she died, but she shows no real sign of doing so and now it is out of our hands. It is a huge change for us, as we’ve been living with her for 14 years as carers now.
So, that’s where we are at. My heart is heavy and I have cried a lot, but I know it is best for Mum.