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ok,now that Mom is in an adult home, I still seem to be struggling with a different issue each week. this latest one is how long "should" I be staying when I visit,which is about every other day. I try to stay about an hour and a half and she just almost begs me not to leave. kills me. if I stay a shorter time, it's the same. it seems very hard for me to sit there and try to make any conversation because her memory is so poor that she's not remembering the short term things at all and now the longer term things either. but for me to interact with any of the other residents to pass the time really agitates her. maybe this stuff is really just end of life issues, she's 101 but I would love some feedback.
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Hi Anne:

It is hard to hang out at nursing homes (or hospitals) for any length of time. I know when my dad was in the NH after surgery, I would come by several times a day for short visits. That worked better for me and I think it broke up his day better. However, that was only for a short period of time.

But I found it was a good time to visit in the morning and have hot chocolate with him. Then I would come back after lunch or before dinner. That way I could check on how he was eating and keep an eye on how he was being treated. But, my point being, several short drop-in visits might be easier on you and might help your mother not feel the need to hang on so. It is just a thought...

Another thought is to bring something along with you to do with her. Not knowing what your hobbies are, now might be a good time to take up crocheting or something that keeps you busy during your visits and can share with her. It is hard to just sit and visit...

It is tough to have to put your mother in a home. This is an adjustment period I imagine for you both. Depending on how the home is run, perhaps you could have lunch with her (perhaps bring a basket?) so that she knows you are there for lunchtime only. Anyhow, Anne, these are just some thoughts to maybe help... You are doing good work! Take care dear heart.

Love and Hugs from Glenda

[This message has been edited by glenderella (edited 06-22-2006).]
Hi, Anne.

It certainly is an adjustment, not only to deal with memory issues but also doing visits instead of being busy with hands-on care-giving. My mother is in a NH, and is pretty much "with it" mentally most of the time, but is starting to have some noticable memory issues. My visits are usually only 1/2 hour to 1 and 1/2 hours, depending on what else is going on, but only twice, or sometimes three times a week. I sit down and chit chat about family, read her mail to her, watch tv shows with her ... she's a news junkee and has *opinions* about current events, even though she doesn't remember daily developments.

When my brothers visit, they are so disconcerted about the nh setting, they prefer to take her outside and watch the birds, squirrels, etc. in the courtyard or the park across the street. One likes to assist her with solitaire games, one likes to read to her or work word puzzles with her.

Most nh's will let the residents have personal items. Having familiar items around may help her. Also, telling her when you'll be back and that the nurses and aides all know to call you if there's any kind of problem... anything to reassure her that she'll be okay until you get back.

The main thing is to be visible to the staff and be the best advocate for her that you can. If you're satisfied that she's getting good care, then allow yourself the freedom to relax ... you deserve it, really now, don't you?

I would only go for a short vist right before meal times. Then after I fed her, the nurse would take her to clean up.That was my chance to slip away. I would kiss her good bye and the nurse would get her attention so I could go.
It got to the point that she knew if I came in the door it was meal time. She would greet me with"About time you came to feed me,I am starving." I would just laugh.Cause on her room tray would be the wrappers of cookies, candy or something she had been munching on. I always kept things in her drawer or little fridge for her.

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