We were back on Zoom again this evening. The group discussed developments in their caring roles over the last month. We had carers who had come to our first Friendship Group back at Shrewsbury House soon 3rd August and were keen to discuss the experience.
The pandemic has forced many of us to spend a lot of time at home with very little contact with other people. We had the time to become content with that. Now we have the opportunity to go out and mix more, the prospect can be daunting.
A carer said her mum had been out twice recently. Before both outings, she was very reluctant to go. She made many excuses and said she expected to be unwell on the days. Following some gentle encouragement mum agreed to go. At our Friendship Group, she dance and joined in with the activities. She said she enjoyed herself. At the other outing, she enjoyed some food (actually, lots of food and asked for a doggie back to take some away). A couple of very successful days, but needing a bit of encouragement to set in motion.
Getting fro A to B
Another member said the person she cared for had been very keen to come to our Friendship Group. He can be rather confused, but very stubborn. He said he could find his way yo Shrewsbury House (he had been there many times before). He aimed to arrive at 12, eat something in the cafe and be ready for our group at 1pm. Unfortunately, he got a bit lost and arrived at 2:15 pm. He had a good time at the group, but agreed using a taxi would be a good idea in future.
15 visits to hospital
We have missed a couple from our Friendship Group who couldn’t use Zoom. We had an update on developments this evening. The carer told us that her husband was still a cheerful man. Sadly, following a fall, his condition had worsened and he was now bed ridden. He had needed 15 visits to the hospital. The support from the District Nurse had be good, but time limited. Now suitable carer support was difficult to find. The group made some suggestions from carer organisations they had used. Volcare was providing some support, which enabled our member to have shot breaks from constant caring duties.
Time for a break
A speaker was pleased to say that he was due to have another trip away, thanks to the very good live-in carer from Bluebird. His wife had been in something of a decline, but had stabilised recently.
Getting professional help for the carer
We are very pleased that one member of the group has chosen to speak more about her own therapy. She reflected on some of the points I brought up in my ‘7 Tips’ session (see below). She quoted “We become what we think about all day long”, emphasising that negative-speak reinforces our negative opinions. She had taken inspiration from the work of Wayne Dyer.
We returned to the enjoyment another member had found with their loved one at our Friendship Group. Again there had been reluctance to come, but shortly after our entertainer started to play, they were up dancing. Confusion and paranoia continued to feature and the carer’s own health had deteriorated. Fortunately, family support was keeping things moving forward.
His version of normal
We were please on the improvement of the dad of a carer. However, his blackouts were still a mystery. The memory Clinic had discharged him, as they could not find out what was wrong and he was now looking for further support from his GP.
A new meter said how helpful she had found listening to the discussions and people’s experiences and frustrations. She would be back (she and her husband also enjoyed the Friendship Group).
Seven tips to reverse a bad day – Peter’s presentation
Everyone has bad days. While bad days are common for all of us, you may not have thought about the ramifications that your bad day can have on yourself and others you run into. The tips on how to reverse a bad day are here.
We had the most unusual apology yet from someone who didn’t make our meeting this evening – they were in prison! Fortunately, they work there and were let out later.
Next meeting 13th September