I have an app on my phone called “TimeHop”. I’m sure some of you are familiar with it, and others might not be. The app is connected to my different social media profiles, and works like the “Memories” page on Facebook. It pulls posts from this day, years in the past. So today, April 6 2019, it pulled a post from April 6 2016 – the day that my mother had her first visit with a PSW.
It’s weird looking back at the past, and seeing how much has changed over the years. The post from the past was from my old blog, a blog dedicated to living with Alzheimer’s. It helps me remember little things that maybe don’t sit at the forefront of my mind anymore.
Mom used to love the word “no”. During our battle with Alzheimer’s, before she lost the ability to speak, she loved that word. She would say it to everything. Except to the PSW. Mom’s first visit with the PSW went so smoothly, that it’s such a great memory to look back on. We had some really great PSWs come through (one in particular, named Alma, who we adored), and some not-so-great PSWs (just more lazy and uninterested). Mom was a bit difficult sometimes. Didn’t want to make effort to get out of the tub, or make an effort to assist the PSW in her own shower. But Alma was always great with mom. Wherever she is now, I hope she’s found another family that adores her as much as we did.
Three years ago today, it was her first PSW visit. And now, it’s been almost a year that she’s been in the long term care home. She does well with the nurses and PSWs there. In fact, I don’t think any of them have ever complained to us about anything that mom does. They get her up and dressed in the morning, showered a few times during the week, and fed three times a day. They’re good with her. And it’s weird to think that just three short years ago she was home getting to meet her first PSW.
Sometimes I think that having the PSWs come to the house was a good starting point for mom – she was able to get used to them. She was able to get adjusted to different faces taking care of her instead of just her immediate family. These PSWs, whether they realise it or not, became a part of the family. My mom felt comfortable enough with them to let them into her life, and let them help her. That’s not an easy thing for any individual to do – especially someone with Alzheimer’s.
We’ve come a long way over the last three years. We’ve come a long way since her diagnosis. Times have changed, and so has mom. She’s gone from saying no, to settling into a long term care home with ease.
It’s memories like the ones that I come across on TimeHop that mean a lot. Like I said, some things don’t always stay at the forefront of your mind. But social media has changed us over the years, and looking back on the little things – it’s nice sometimes. Sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes bittersweet, but sometimes – it feels just right. We don’t only get to see the memories like when mom met her first PSW, but we see memories like when mom was active on facebook – commenting on our photos, or when I’d quote on twitter some of the funny things she said (“Don’t forget to lock your pocket.”). It’s nice to relive some of those moments. Those memories.
So on this day, three years ago, mom met her first PSW. And like I said then, I’ll say it again. No huff, no fuss. She’s doing alright.