I spend at least an hour a day outside my mother’s room and I can’t hug her

Jun 18th, 2020

My 103 year old mother suffers from Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia as well as congestive heart failure. Daily I spend 7 or 8 hours with her caring for her wants and needs, helping with feeding and changing if the PSWs are busy and she is in bed.

Since we have been locked out, I spend minimum of an hour daily outside her bedroom window trying to communicate to a woman who due to eyesight and hearing deficiencies finds it frustrating that I am outside and do not come in to hug and hold and even at times cuddle with her on the bed. She is not eating well and has lost close to 15 pounds in the past 13 weeks. Also I’ve noted cognitive changes due to lack of feisty stimulation that only a daughter can provide.

The weight loss I had to bring to the facility’s attention before anything was acted upon. They are now providing boost or some sort of supplement. Being apart for both of us is devastating. At her age I want to be with her and provide the love and proper care she so richly deserves in what realistically could be her last days. I can’t stand outside her window and lose her this way. When they locked us out is when the weight loss started.

These government officials have to understand the toll this is taking on residents and family caregivers. COVID-19 the virus may be deadly but their cure for this pandemic can be deadly too. We have to let families back into these facilities soon before our next epidemic is loss of life due to depression, lack of social contact, isolation and lower levels of care due to physical distancing.

I’m being light as far as criticism goes but my heart is bursting with anger over this and I could probably write a book on what I’ve seen and heard over the last 7 years of my mothers life in long term care, and we aren’t in as bad a shape as many others. Thank you for listening.

Rose Anne R.