A while ago, I shared my thoughts on respite care for full-time carers. At that time, I was feeling ‘carer guilt’ at looking for somewhere for dad while I took a little break. It took a few phone calls and a couple of visits but I think I have been successful in my mission.
You know when you visit a place and it just feels right? Well, that’s how it felt when I walked into this place. It smelled lovely, the residents were happy and smiling and happy to chat. One lady told my dad that he wouldn’t want to go home again after staying there. ‘It’s wonderful’ she said.
We had a good look around and were so impressed with the facilities. Lovely communal rooms, lovely bedrooms with mini fridge and wet room. The staff were understanding and positive. The local environment is beautiful.
Today, the Manager came out to see us to do a pre-assessment of dad’s needs. It’s a small world – she had been Manager at dad’s last home for a while. She is an amazing lady and we warmed to her instantly. Nothing was too much trouble for her. What did dad enjoy? She would ensure that he had everything he liked for his stay. Gin and tonic? Red wine? Lager? She said she would ensure he got it.
We talked for ages and she made notes. When she left she gave him a hug. Dad told me he feels really happy about going there for a break and I feel confident that he will be well looked after for his stay. All being well, we should be able to have the occasional break now and he will be happy to call this place his home from home. If the worst comes to the worst and his health deteriorates to the point where I can no longer care for him, it means he will know the staff and routines there and it would be the natural choice for his continuing care.
No more ‘carer guilt’. I have a big grin on my face today.