Today I learned what it feels like to help to drink from a two handled plastic cup a mother who probably aided me in the same way well nigh 80 years ago.
It is almost a month since Mum last visited our home. Until today I had not seen her since. For some days further visits continued to be cancelled as our mother could not shift a cold. She was then admitted to hospital with pneumonia for which she was prescribed antibiotics and returned home to Woodpeckers – considered safer for her – where she was kept in isolation for up to the Covid two weeks required period. Only Elizabeth was permitted to visit.
As she worsened it was decided that it would not be in her best interests to leave her home for hospital after medical prognosis was that she was at “end of life” stage.
In the last few days visiting has been opened to all without the need for an appointment. We are, however required to produce evidence of a negative test result and to don masks and full PPE.
This morning Jacqueline collected me, brought and helped me apply an LFT test kit, and drove me to Mum’s care home.
Apparently our mother has better days. She was asleep when we arrived and did not really awake for the rest of my visit. Mum’s head was lifted from her pillows which were straightened in an effort to wake her. Attempts were made to administer oral pain relief, antibiotics, and sips of water. If anything was squirted into her mouth most of it dribbled down her chin. Although she was in such a groggy state and her voice was consequently weak she was able to say what she did and did not want. She knew I was there and in fact held the cup with two hands as I very slowly, with no pressure, helped her to apply it to her lips and tip it enough for her to take two sips.
The care staff were very attentive, checking every fifteen minutes or so.
After about an hour and a half Jacqueline drove me home, Jackie provided us with a salad lunch, and my sister returned to the care home.
This evening we dined on Jackie’s succulent sausages in red wine; creamy mashed potatoes; firm carrots, peas, and broccoli, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the Rioja.