Monday, 15 April 2013

Family time.

We played Happy Family at the weekend.
Took Okaasan downtown in the car, delivered her to the hair salon and then 2 hours later picked up an amazingly transformed, classy-cut lady and took her to dinner in a department store.

Haircut SO improves Okaasan. Probably inside the head, as well as out.

When we go out with her the little Okaasan-isms are there all the time : the constant checking questions, the ready-way-ahead-of-time, the clothing oddities ("I need to take my toweling dress to the hair salon to wear OVER my blouse and pants, in case it is cold") and the ramdom comments about things glimpsed from the car.
But she was happy. It all wasn't too stressful for us. Mission Accomplished.

Random bits here too:

# Day car manager came for a regular meeting last week, and Okaasan appeared to agree that she would like to go to the center TWICE a week. We doubt that was a real, understood decision. Probably just being polite and agreeing with a visitor.
I find it interesting that she actually qualifies for two days a week - I thought it was only once a week. Maybe they start everyone at one and try to increase it? Would be wonderful if she'd go.....we'll see if she continues at once a week in April and whether twice in May is doable.

#WE just bought a DVD player for Okaasan's TV. We've just recorded and watched a great program about amateur videos shot in Japan between 1946-1960 - ordinary life and big events - and we think Okaasan would LOVE to see this program (and others like it). Japanese TV is recently waking up to the fact that increasing numbers of viewers are oldies and want nostalgia now there are more and more about old singers, reruns of old dramas and the like.
Okaasan stares at the TV all day - often TV shopping and the weather channel (when she presses the wrong button on the remote), the DVD player would mean we could show her programs we think she'd enjoy.

And, in another family...

:-)  I had lunch with an old colleague last week - who has been caring for her dementia-suffering mother alone for years. Now mum is finally in care.
I asked what had finally forced her to use full-time care. Did something happen? Mum had a meltdown? Violence?
"Yes, my blood pressure went way up!".......

:-( But less smiley face. The same friend said that recently her mother's face looks unhappy when one care center staff enters the room, and finally the other day mum managed to get out the word "bullying" she is worried what is happening to her mum and the other old residents when family members are not around. She is going to leave a secret recording device next to mum's bed.

Okaasan is SO lucky to be with Dear Son and his amazing girlfriend.


  1. okaasan is super lucky. That must be very upsetting - that bullying might be going on in an old people's home or hospital. A recording device sounds like a good idea.

  2. I'm afraid bullying does happen. My husband's mother who has very advanced dementia suffered a blow to the head and had to have emergency operation but by the time they got her to the operating room she was too far gone. She has been in a coma for three years. She suffered the blow at the home she was in. The dr. said it was not caused by a fall but a blunt blow. God knows what they did. I hate to think. I just hope I never end up in a home.

  3. Claire - that's a terrible story...and there was nothing anybody could do to find out more?? Even if she was hit by another resident - it's grim to think the staff couldn't stop it. I know...I worry about ending up in a home with strangers caring for kids, no really close family...I am saving money to buy the very BEST care facility for my end of life.