Random Jottings Of Gildersleeve

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Location: United Kingdom

Perhaps you'll learn more about me as you read my blog. For anyone who translates my blog using the translator facility, don't forget if you wish to read the comments in your own language to click on the title of the post down the left hand side otherwise they will remain in english. Also I assume that the translation is accurate but I don't know, so please allow for errors.

Monday, April 30, 2012

What A Day!

I'll tidy the house tomorrow, I should do something today but I cannot be bothered but whether I can stay here or not I owe it to Mum...myself even.

I am tired...I tried to save the money of using a taxi so I shuffled to the bus stop and did the same coming back home. It takes me forever to walk, it really takes a lot of doing.

Where was I going back to a neighbouring town to register Mum's death which I put off on Friday after the phone call from my cousin that put doubts in my mind. Maybe I'll never lose them and if I thought someone had harmed Mum un-necessarily of course I want them to pay but what am gaining.

Before that I ordered my flowers from a local flourist I think my spray is big enough. I went for carnations in the end but could not decide on the clour pink or white so they are doing a combination of the two colours. Mum's worth any money but they have done them for £35 and £3.50 delivery charge, lower than the other flourists I went to and the assistant was nicer to deal with. And took plenty of time with me and was patient.

I popped into the hospital where I usually see my consultant to tell a couple of people what has happened they knew Mum because usually for many years Mum used to accompany me when I saw my Consultant. One is a nurse and she loved my Mum and she wanted to come to the funeral but on Wednesday she flies to Egypt on holiday. She listened to me today and has said that as a son I could not have done more and that I must not beat myself up. As hard as it is to accept what has happened.

She is worried about what my future will be like but what can anyone do? Since thinking about what I have put in with and her coffin I am going to try and find a photo of myself, Dad and when they were married but I cannot do that if I don't find the negatives, I don't want to lose an original print.

I thought that I had some somewhere on a pc somewhere that I could copy and print in a shop tomorrow but I have looked around and there does not seem to any sign of what I am looking for.

Trust that to be the case and typically for me to think of this so late.

Tomorrow I hope to see the vicar about the service at 5pm and earlier in the day the solicitor to obtain Mum's will.

I haven't eaten exactly healthily today but I ate when I felt that I was able to so I managed a sausage roll and a chicken melt from Greggs and a portion of chips from the fish shop near my home and two bottles of water, I have lost interest in cooking and eating at present, I do it because I have to.

A couple of times I felt as though I was going to faint today. I am also starting to suffer with neck pains and an ache in my neck.

I'm sitting here at the PC and cannot see a reason to be doing so. I have the radio on but though its what I would usually listen to I'm not really interested in what they are talking about but its a voice so I think though its only coming up to 8pm I'll go to bed.

I cannot see a reason just sitting up for the sake of it. I'll try not to succumb to misery and depression. Mum would not want to see me like this...and I owe it to her...if no one else.

Maybe its too soon but I have arranged to see my Dr about possibly getting my hernia fixed. No point putting it off any more. If I follow through.

The amount of people who keep telling me bad things about the hospital Mum was in, another did that today...I have never heard a good report yet.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Should I Question the Treatment Mum Was Given Before...

she went into the Nursing Home?

Could they have removed the tumour whilst it had shrunk with Radio Therapy, they said at the time it had not spread according to the scan. Why did they not give surgery a try and allow it to grow again or am I just beating myself up for something that still would've happened. Did they give up because Mum was a certain age? The care plan Mum was given for the Nursing Home was(I understand, though I only found out on Friday from the Coroner)arranged by the Oncologist so Mum was probably never going to get out of it and back home.

And right from the start Mum was only offered palliative care so I guess we knew what the outcome would be. It was a case of when.

Yet the hospital where she was treated is now being touted as a main hospital for treating cancer in Europe and we are having some features done across the week on the local radio telling how much they'll be able to do for people suffering this horrible disease. It's had millions spent on it(£35Million)and I assume more up to date equipment installed. Too late for Mum? Would it have made any difference, who knows I mustn't beat myself up otherwise the coming years will just be full of regret. And for what...

I wonder if we are predisposed to this disease(I mustn't start thinking about that)but I lost my Father to lung/throat cancer possibly brought on because he smoked. He only managed a year of his retirement and was not much older than I am now myself. I'm sure my Father's brother died of a similar reason(oh this is so miserable)and Mum with Rectum Cancer. I think my Father's sisters also succumbed to cancer. Then again when they say one in three will suffer from it, its not surprising that we come into contact with it because of someone we know if its not ourselves. So again, with statistics like that I should probably just accept things as they are.

Sorry, Another Boring Technical Post...

I hope I won't regret doing so but I have come away from BT regarding my phone line and by paying a year in advance I have saved £31. I decided to take their broadband offer as there are 6 months free...I nearly went for the cheapest/lowest broadband offer which would've meant paying only £38.94 in the first year but what I saved on the phone rental I decided almost paid for a larger, higher priced Broadband package so I signed up for 60GB. I can switch between packages at any time so I can come back down to the lowest available.

And in the second year I might do that when I have to pay for the broadband all the year around. I may have no choice.

Its still cheaper than paying BT for the line and approx £4 per month than the ISP I am with at present. And in the year where I get 6 months free Broadband I am still £21.01 better off compared to the previous ISP.

Through giving up Sky and the TV license of course I have save on the Sky monthly sub and license fee so that's a saving of approx £312 annually and again if I take away what the telephone and Broadband  from that figure I have saved £129.14.

If I can afford to watch TV normally and things work out ok my satellite box has become a Freesat box when Sky switch off their pay channels so it still receives some free to air channels(TV and Radio)I think they said 220 in total though how many would interest is another matter. If that is the case I would just have to find the licence fee.And the license would take me back to roughly what I would normally pay for the phone and internt.

But I can watch a little TV on here if its not live and is recorded/material already broadcast.

I have been told that 10GB would mean as an example I can...

"If you watched 10hrs of iPlayer, you tube etc. a week you would only accumulate 6GB of monthly usage. You can surf the Internet as much as you like as 60hrs a week only accumulates 3.5GB a month. 10hrs a day of on line radio only accumulates 1GB a month"

And at present I will have 60GB a month.

And I have free usage that does not affect my allowance between midnight and 8am(That's available even on the lowest package)

The only thing I did not like and I did not find out until I had got through all the signing up process was that though I paid a year in advance for the phone line rental on the credit card so I know that's paid for until April 2013 and out of the way but the payments are monthly on the Broadband and I was going to pay that off the card so I knew that was OK until the same time next year and then I would not have to think about it until the line rental comes up again. But they wanted to set up a Direct Debit for the instalments for BB.

I hope I can manage to pay for it but that's only around 35p per day. What can you do for such a small amount?
I'll worry nearer the time.
I may still have to watch how much gas I use for heating this place but I doubt that I use less electric than I do. I only use one light(on the landing through the light)possibly to cook in a microwave or a stove when I am doing a meal and my PC's and radio's. I don't how much power a radio and light uses(hopefully not much) So if anything takes the power it will be the PC's. The power company thinks my electric bill is quite low monthly(approx £60)so that's approx £2 per day.

As I Went To Bed...

I had a thought.
Don't know if/how I can do it...I'd like to place a single red rose on Mum's coffin just before the curtains close around it...

I'll have a word with the Funeral company when I go to see Mum in the Chapel Of Rest...

Little Orphan Gildy!

Hard to believe in approx seven hours it is already a week since I could talk to, kiss, hold my Mum's hand.

 Has that time really passed by? I am missing Mum terribly and I know that I will cry at some point but I think I am coming to terms in many ways with it, I'll never get over it.

I suspect seeing Mum in the Chapel of Rest will be difficult and the actual day next week of the funeral. I am protected to some extent by still arranging things(Still have to register Mum's death on Monday)

As Anon says I think that I need three copies at least but the solicitor who has Mum's will I understand do them for free so if the Register charges I'll take the original and get the copies done elsewhere. The Solicitor needs to see a Death Certificate to obtain Mum's will. The Bank needs to see the will and a Death Certificate.

The people in charge of the pension Mum had a little of Dad's pension need to see a Death Certificate. I will have to contact the person in charge of the Electoral Register and stop Mum receiving a postal vote anymore. I believe that then is all complete.

The vicar still has to be in touch about the service and then all is sorted. Except for me getting advice about how my finances will be affected. And I have had a form sent to me to fill in.

I am already having problems remembering Mum's voice and what we talked about,  perhaps its my mind's way of coping with the loss, I remember not long before Mum had to leave our home and go into hospital she did say "I Love You" I can ask for no more than that.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

I Should Tidy Myself Up And Get Shaved...

but I'll do that when I come home, I won't be out very long. I don't have the money to spend on lots of shopping and being alone I don't need as much anyhow so perhaps that cancels each other out!

I am going to try and struggle on my own legs to the local supermarket(avoid paying for a taxi)and get some copies of the local free sheet and bring them home for myself and a few spare for those who might like to see the notice about Mum, where the paper does not reach the area that they live. I think that it has a two or three mile radius. But some people that may attend the service might just be a little further away. I'll keep some but I'm not really sure what I can do with them.

I cannot see the point of keep getting the press release out and reading it.

Yesterday I spent £48 having copies of my parents Marriage certificate and their birth certificates and my own. I just did because I could. I cannot see how they'll
matter anymore(they won't to Mum and Dad)and when I am no longer alive the same.

I suppose its nice to have them and know a little more about who was responsible for me being brought into the world.

And of course on Monday its back down the Registrar's to register Mum's passing and hopefully no more doubts about why and how she passed away. As I keep saying I cannot change what has happened.

Remarkably, as one of my friends(VQ)posted a link to a charity that helps people facing bereavement, you'd think that they might be open at weekends especially during daytime/early evening hours.

Both Cruse and MacMillan Nurses are closed. In the case of Macmillan they are open more or less 8am-8pm Monday-Friday. Cruse when you call just says its closed and to call back again. It doesn't even tell you what times the helpline is open.

Friday, April 27, 2012

One More Thing...

Here's a little sad post...I know that Christmas will be difficult. I can see a box of Christmas crackers in my bedroom I never got to pull with Mum and I cannot do them on my own.

I guess I'll give them away!

Can't bring myself to give away/throw away Mum's clothes but I'm not going to keep looking at them. I'll put them in the wardrobe and decide what to do later. If I have to move a lack of space may mean I have no choice. It's too early to decide what's best.

I Think That I Have Run Out Of Things To Say...

Except a week has almost gone by and in a few minutes I'll be listening to Desmond Carrington on the radio which we listened to together but last week I missed it as my friend at the home asked me into to help him with a computer problem. And before I knew it an hour had passed.

I went to see Mum(No offence to him)and I sometimes feel bad that I did not stay with Mum more.

When I returned to Mum's room I apologised and said something about being sorry that I had been away so long and mentioned about being away an hour and not in a nasty way Mum said, "Yes you have!" but I was with her all that night and well into the morning/afternoon so that was around 15 hours and then I was with Mum for almost 14 hours upon my return. I could not do much more I suppose.

Hope that I can listen without it affecting me.

It Was The Cancer What Got Her!

What a horrible way to put it but around 10am I received a call from the Coroner's Office, the Post Mortem had already been completed and I asked a question that could not be answered which could have me wondering if anything could've been done but basically the cancer had spread and if I understand what I was told it had caused complications resulting in a kind of Pneumonia and another technical term was used which means secondary cancer so I doubt I or anyone else could've done anything in the end. I have to accept that to get some kind of closure.

I guess Mum's poor little body just could not fight it anymore and she had to give up.

My friend who was in the home who I helped with his computer so he could talk to his wife came out of the home today and he has enough to contend with with his own wife's illness and his own health problems.

But the first thing he did was contact me when he got home.

He tells me that since Mum passed away another three have and again the police have been in again...and he's not too happy about how often they seem to be being called in. I must admit that bothered me.

He did not like/understand why my Mum had to go through a post mortem and for the simple reason of not being seen by a Dr since January 17Th(as we all keep saying Mum was seen in a hospital in March, was under the Nursing Home's care(They could've called a Dr in)Perhaps I should've but I must not beat myself up on that.

And we assume because the hospital was paying for the care the home was following a plan put in place by the hospital.

But was is done is done...

Mum is not suffering and is at peace...

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Well, I Have Made A Start...

Rightly or wrongly...(This is complicated)Might be boring(and your eyes will glaze over)or be difficult to follow...

I have cancelled Sky TV which I have been with since 1989. I decided for the amount of TV I watch, it's not worth it! They tried to tempt me to stay but I can save quite a lot of money.

Then I was informed that if I decide to use the box I can still receive quite a lot of channels(TV/Radio)for free and it becomes a Freesat box but I still am leaving it switched off at present because if I do, I don't pay a TV licence and I haven't decided if I can afford or want to pay that.

I am quite happy with the radio and using my computers. And its possible that I may be able to view some TV over the Internet if I go Broadband.

They tried to reduce my bill at Sky and my telephone land line(possibly if I'd included the broadband the offer might not have been that bad and worth having)but not knowing what my finances are like for a few weeks perhaps I still could not afford it. If I go back to Sky, not likely even a basic package may be more expensive for me as apparently my charges at the time of cancelling were frozen and protected.

By not watching TV and being with Sky I've saved over the year...£312 and the TV Licence is £145.50 so together that's £457 annually.

I pay £170 annually for my internet but originally Mum paid the telephone line rental that's £156 annually so now I have to find that to keep online. That's £326 annually to find.

Altogether that's £783 to find and that's without paying electric, gas, food, rent, community charge and rent. And I think they are basics if you are spending a lot of time in your home. Even if you are working you are expected to have a phone or internet access. I think that's around £15.05 per week.

However, I am toying with the idea of joining a new ISP for my internet(If I have chosen wisely)called Plusnet and the line rental is the same £12.99 and approx £7 for the broadband monthly.So that's approx £240 annually and that's a saving of £543 so that working out at £4.61 per week. Now with this offer at Plusnet the first 6 months of broadband are free, so in the first year I save another £42 so that comes down to £198 for the first year. Making it the equivelent of £3.80 a week.

No doubt there will be some restrictions on useage but you can go online midnight to 8am without it affecting your package and allowance between 8am and Midnight.

Also, many phone calls are free or reduced so you can save on calls and as I have stated I have no or few people that I can call so that side of things won't worry me.

I've just got to decide whether to order the package and whether even with all those savings I can afford it. The thought of being internet less frightens me and the thought of just having the radio for entertainment would be hard much as I love it.

Wish I could be allowed to pay a year up front. And then worry about next year later but no ISP likes to do that so its likely they'll say no to that idea. What can you do for as little as 65p per day...you've got to have some pleasure.

Just be my luck that my PC or monitor will pack up and need replacing or repairing. Its all the extra costs that crop up.

Given the choice I'd do without the heating but I cannot do without the electric. I think life is going to be tough...

Once again I may have to ask "Anyone want a lodger?"

I Think That I Am Going To See Mum At The Chapel Of Rest...

I have never done that with anyone else.

But how much harder can it be having seen Mum pass away and also identifying Mum's body for the sake of the Post Mortem?

I found a lovely two piece that Dad always called a Sue Ellen outfit similar to what that character wore in the TV series "Dallas" it is lovely and delicate and is mainly in blue with a pattern I think is gold(I forget what they represent)I'll try and remember when I see Mum again. It has a white collar and white cuffs(the buttons on the cuffs are missing)but that doesn't matter now...I also supplied Mum's nail varnish, lipstick and make up.

For Mum's dignity and because they said a low collar may mean seeing where they cut her open around the throat I gave a white scarf/cravat with black or it might be dark brown spots. I'd have liked to have given Mum better shoes but there was a pair in a kind of green colour with those kind of straps you pull across and stick with Velcro.

I had nothing to put in the coffin with Mum but though I might've liked to keep them as a keepsake I decided to put my last Mother's Day Card in with her in which I think I said "With All My Love, You Mean The World To Me!" and a little bear that sits in a kind of little paper carrier which says "I Love You!"

Just a little gesture from me saying how much I loved her and what she meant/means to me and always will.


I have virtually lost my voice...so if anyone needs to arrange anything by phone it may get to the point where I cannot talk and by heard. :-(

I'm seeing a Dr at around 5pm later on...Hope its nothing serious.

This PC keeps disconnecting from the net so I hope that's not a serious problem there.

I have had to purchase a certificate to get my monthly prescription cheaper(£104)no choice as I have to pay for them now having come into Mum's savings soon(not that they are a lot and it hopefully won't take long to get them for free again)

Now I have had a call from the Coroner to inform me that Mum's Post Mortem has been called off as the Pathologist has had a car accident and they'll have to call another one in and do it tomorrow now. I have to believe them but if I was cynical I could wonder if one wasn't available or they're so busy Mum has been moved from today.

Its just one thing after another...

One piece of good news the Registrar is going to contact me when the information comes through and I don't need to offer any ID for Mum...

I Went To Bed At 10pm...

and dozed but I awoke and my first thought was Mum and her Post Mortem today :-(

I'll try and go back to bed, I've just had a few cheese and biscuits and I am about to have a mug of tea...

I have LBC on and a phone in, I can just about manage that and if I can't sleep so be it. I'm not really interested as I might have been but its a voice in the background, hope I'm not annoying my neighbour.

Today I am starting to tidy my house, for Mum...for me.

If I had to move I'd have it tidy and get rid of a lot of stuff(rubbish and items that would not fit into another property)I don't plan to rush into any decisions yet(and hope that I have at least a year before I need to worry about any thing that could affect me)

And if any relative wants a cup of tea on the day of the funeral I want it to be reasonably tidy even if the carpets and furnishings are old and seen better days. I cannot afford nor will I waste what money I have to try and replace items. Its just me and again, if I do and suddenly find I'm on the move its a waste.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

When There Are No Rules...

Its hard to live by or introduce them. I don't know I quite often found that I was happy to go to bed anytime from 9pm-11pm, I suppose that I was happy to keep Mum company and we'd listen to the mp3 player with lovely music on it or a little radio.

But with Mum not here it seems strange going to bed early and yet I find myself staying up later, perhaps in time I'll get into some kind of regular pattern. At present I seem to be up until 3am and then go to bed, then sleep until late in the morning or until lunchtime.

In some ways I am fortunate that I can do that but I suppose there will be a time when I have to fit into hours many in society are expected to.

Its going to get hard...I've been revisiting the way the benefits system is being changed and many genuine people are going to be worried and caught up amongst those who probably could be seen as wasters.

The document is laughable as it says these changes "May" affect you...no, they will affect you if you get Housing Benefit, Job Seekers Allowance, Income Support, Employment and Support Allowance, Working Tax Credit and Child Credit.

If you pay Council Tax but receive help now that is being reduced by 10%

Disability Living Allowance is being replaced and there will be tighter rules and the amount that you can obtain will reduce.

If you are of working age you will be charged £13 for each bedroom that are not used or needed.

Is it any wonder that many are worried.

People on benefits are not that well off(The media would have many believe likewise) many of these changes will affect people working too.

The problem is that housing stock is not enough and there are are not many properties that are smaller(and we all know that if you move into smaller property)it will continue to rise in price.

In my own area as there is house bidding taking place, people out of the area can apply for property but someone like me could end up anywhere including another town living in an area and with people I don't know.

That has already been attempted in the last few days in the London area and some people have been moved out to an area many miles away from the location that they know and love.

For many not much to look forward to...

I'm Eating...

But I'm not really enjoying it!

It's more a case of I know that I have to. I might as well be eating cardboard. I am having crispy chicken with lettuce, tomato, spring onion and a wholemeal bread bun.

Around lunchtime I was passing a fish shop so I got a portion of chips and drank a bottle of cider with it and nearly went for a lay down but I had to do a lot of phoning to give details as we have a provisional date and time for the funeral.

Friday 4th May 2012 late in the afternoon.
It leaves my home at 2.30pm
Church Service 2.45pm
Crematorium 3.30pm

Not looking forward to it!

Just have to collect Mum's will(bit of a distance from here so should use a taxi but to save money may have to struggle on a bus)but I need a Death Certificate to obtain the will!

Then I shall have to register Mum's death with the Registrar but they'll need to see the will and Death Certificate but I am told that they will need to see Mum's Birth and Marriage Certificate for ID.

I have no idea where they are and I am unsure if anything else will be accepted. Neither of us have much in the way ID. Passports are out(we've never been abroad)and many things that once would have had documentation don't as many payments are done with a plastic card.

I may give them a phone call as I'll probably need to make an appointment.

I May Catch Up On My Sleep Later...

I have to arrange the funeral at 10am so I may stay up to be sure I am there on time.

Just found a site about how to arrange a funeral on a website run by the funeral company I am using and I am now even more concerned that the post mortem on Mum has been instagted me and my questions in the last few days about what the Nursing was/wasn't doing for Mum. All I wanted was some advice/information.

Otherwise whereas I was told they were doing it because she had not been seen by a Dr, this website suggests when someone dies in a Nursing home/hopsital a PM is only done because some dies unexpectedly and if that is the real reason they are doing it, I'll start to question why I didn't get a Dr out earlier just to do a general visit, why the home didn't, why our surgery didn't call just as a normal thing to do for a patient.

You could even ask if the Social Worker was so hot on everything back here why did not call.

If they find the care was lacking how am I going to feel? If there was a chance Mum had quite some time ahead of her and was not her time to go?

Its not as if I can bring her back.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Everyone Has To Get Used To The Following...

I know that I'm not alone but when it's my Birthday at the end of May it will be the first time I will not have had a card from Mum. To be honest I'm not expecting any cards to drop on the mat.

Equally, it will strange not buying a card for Mum on her Birthday and oh, when Mother's Day comes around...

But I'll get used to it I am sure.

I was as close to my Father but I suppose the fact that he passed away twenty eight years ago really does show that you do come to terms with such a situation, of course the difference then was that you had someone still to offer support, we were there for each other, this time I am alone.

The other day I posted images of my lovely Mum(but said I was still trying to maintain some anonymity for my blog but its quite possible someone will recognise Mum)Some who post comments here do know my identity but I am going to go a little further and give a name to my Mum instead of her being totally anonymous...Her name was Kathleen.

I had lovely sympathy card today with some genuine words really meant about Mum...
If only she could see and hear what people thought of her.

One quote:"She was a lovely lady, we loved her"

A Prisoner In My Home...

If I was to go out and use a taxi everytime I want to, I'd have virtually no money and if I wanted to go much farther than a few streets, even moving around the town would see the money disappear even quicker. If I attempt to walk I pay for doing so and I am painfully slow. So I will be cutting back on how often I go out.

If I could afford to do so I am tempted to have holiday or a couple of days away but someone somewhere will say if I manage either, I am fit or can't be as bad as I am. Even if it takes a while to recover at the destination but it perhaps helps my emotional well being. There could even be a clause somewhere that expects me to report that I have gone away.

And because they want to call you in for assesments and you never know when you have to stay close to home in case you are sent a letter or they phone you at short notice. So when many think life is great when you have to take Government money, that's not necessarily true.

How Do I Feel About Life At Present?

When I took ill approx 15 years ago...I did not want to die. When I came home from hospital just walking around the town centre and familiar surroundings and standing at the back door feeding and watching the birds in the garden meant so much. It was good to be alive and life was precious.

You can see that I was happy with the simple things of life!

I still am and yet having gone through what I have, and though I am still not in a hurry to go in another way I am less bothered if the time I have remaining is shorter than it might be. After all I'm not overly happy that its likely my health will deteriorate and the thought of ending up in a home similar to where Mum was, I'd rather be dead!

And the thought that I may have visits from a District Nurse/Social Worker/Carer coming into my home doesn't fill me with delight either!

That's terribly defeatist and downbeat(I hope its temporary)

Anyone Want A Lodger?

I don't take up a lot of room and I don't eat much!

Mum's Not Coming Back!

Having to identify Mum's body brings that home. It was a bit of a shock and I did cry a little but she wasn't much different to when I saw her on Sunday when she passed away. Its not nice though. To think we shared so much together and she brought me into this world.

It was a bit of a shock and I did cry a little but she wasn't much different to when I saw her on Sunday when she passed away. Its not nice though. To think we shared so much together and she brought me into this world. Still gave her a kiss and touched her forehead.

It would appear that they can still arrange the funeral whilst waiting for the post mortem but I had to agree to the possibility of tissue samples being taken and if not(with the provision they promise to destroy them after they been examined)the funeral could've been delayed by months. I don't want that for Mum so I gave permission as they did say that they will cremate them.

Again Mum's not there any more, what made Mum who she was is no longer there, whether that is seen as her soul. And when Mum is cremated what use would she have for those tiny samples?

I Didn't Want This...

They have decided because Mum had not been seen by a Dr since January(She was in hospital in March)so a Dr would see her there?

Mum has to have a Post Mortum and I cannot stop it happening so I have to identify Mum's body at 3pm today!

Monday, April 23, 2012

It's Already Nearly 48 Hours Since Mum Passed Away...

I'm ok(sort of)The grief is coming in waves. I've spent over four hours on the phone(nearer five)my phone receiver downstairs decided to stop working(I got five seconds dialing tone...then silence)

Do I need another? Probably not(Since writing this, I have purchased one approx £11, thought I may as well have a reasonably decent one)I'll not be phoning many people after the funeral is all sorted...

I have a mobile(probably the same thing will happen there)I have a phone in my bedroom(if I go back to sleeping in that room)I'm in the main bedroom in the double bed but I really should(if I continue to use that bed...change the mattress)There is a massive delve in it and springs coming through but then again if they move me the bed will take up too much space. So perhaps that mattress should be put on hold and it will cost a bit anyhow. Had Mum returned we'd always talked of having a new mattress.

The house is a tip and needs a good clean and tidying. My garden needs attention(Our gardener says he'll do it for nothing...this time)IF I can afford him in the future I'll have to cut down how often he does it.

I had nothing suitable to wear for a funeral so I have just been into Tesco's and managed to buy a white shirt with a black tie included(£8)a jacket(£17)being short I need to shorten the sleeves and I was going to attempt the work with an iron and wonder web but I can't move the buttons(Well, I might be able to)I have learnt to sew a little but I think there is a place on the town that does alterations, heaven knows what they'll charge.

I hope that they'll be able to do it in time.

Still got my cough but the cold seems to be improving. My voice isn't so good as I have been on the phone for most of the afternoon.

Changing utility bills over to my name(sad but it has to be done)Most of the time I was OK but I did lose it and the call centre staff were very understanding and gave me time.

Then I also found myself talking to the Father of my best friend who I haven't seen or talked for years(for whatever reasons that happens)Well, they've moved around a lot, London, Birmingham...Perth in Australia.

And my friend has found himself working away.

His Father was a Dentist and yet he is struggling just as much as the rest of us...health problems, trying to afford the car, watching the heating bills, having to leave house repairs undone and so on. And worst of all to prove how time has passed by he is 84 years old.

We thought highly of my best friend and his family(and vice versa)My mother especially felt about him as though he was a second son.

My friend has just returned to Italy until September as Holiday Rep but when he found out about Mum he was upset but he kept missing me...the one time he wrote a card(It arrived today)giving a number to call and saying how good it was to hear Mum was improving and may get back home, Mum had passed away the day before.

I spent 3 hours on the phone with his parents.

Last night another friend I'd lost contact with phoned and we were on the phone about the same length of time. It was as if there had not been a break in our friendship. Easy and no awkward gaps in the conversation(Heaven knows what her husband thought of her talking to this guy)

She asked me if I had eaten and I suddenly realised I'd last eaten at the Nursing Home at 1pm Saturday...it was now 1.30am Monday morning.

I must not give up on eating and run myself into the ground having said that I'm typing this and I haven't eaten since 1.30am.

Having purchased a phone and clothes for the funeral, I did a quick shop of things that hopefully will mean I can avoid shopping for a little while and are bargains...salad stuff, bread, milk, various packets of sliced meat, some bread buns etc...that will probably keep me going for a while.

I don't feel like eating but I will.

I also got a phone call from The Coroner today, I assume following up my call about whether Mum was getting the care she should've been in the home but I don't know if I want to put Mum through a Post Mortum. Do I want to know that I or some else had let her down? She had a serious illness that would be very demanding on her body. She has been an incredible fighter.

And I think her body just said enough! Then again can I accept that the cancer probably killed her and not always wonder was it because of another reason.
Tomorrow, I guess I really will have to start the ball rolling, even I don't want to, there is(I am sorry for the pun)a deadline.

So I'll have to inform Mum's bank, start arranging the funeral, possibly see my Dr and discuss Mum, the coroner is trying to obtain a Death Certificate from the Oncologist. Its not something to look forward to.

I have talked to the vicar and we feel that if its a small congregation for the service, it may look lost in what is a reasonably large church, so we think we will be doing it in a church almost next door to the home Mum was in and they say its smaller but it is said to have a lovely interior and the vicar suggested there may be chance to have more of Mum's favourite music can be played than we first thought. And then we can move over to the crematorium.

I've been advised to not spend as much as possibly the Funeral company might try to suggest. Mum is not here any more so why have the most expensive coffin, lots of brass work etc...Why have loads of cars(most people these days use their own transport)so one car will probably be enough(I'll probably be the only one in it)and some have said as most attending will be local we don't know how many will go the Crem and its been suggested the usual buffet afterwards is un-necessary.

Once if people visited from miles away, this was a way to give nourishment for the return drive home and it wasn't as easy to travel around the country years ago and it took for ever. And I suppose a chance to talk with relatives you hadn't seen for ages. That doesn't happen so much these days.

Having said all that its not that Mum isn't worth it, I'd happily spend every penny I have but practically I haven't the money and also things are likely to be very tight in future. But then again I spent whatever I could trying to improve Mum's life before she was ill and certainly whilst she was ill.

And its been noticed by so many and they keep telling me how well I have done by Mum, that I could've done no more than I have, not to question or feel guilty about anything and to remember the good times, this has come from neighbours, some staff in local shops, a few relatives and friends, even taxi drivers. And some have been upset when they have heard the news.

That's a tribute to Mum. Everyone(and I know that they wouldn't say otherwise)have said some genuinely nice things about Mum. My friend in Cornwall said Mum smiled with her eyes(not just her mouth. My friend's Father said Mum was gentle and had class and breeding. Others say what a nice lady. It goes on. This is probably many of the reasons she'll be missed. Even in the home staff also remarked how easy she was to do things for and how thankful she was of what they did for her.

Its going to be so hard to cope with what lies ahead but I will come through it however long it takes. I better Mum would not me to crumble and be miserable for what time I have remaining. And what would I gain by being that way?

Mum never used the term "Dead" when talking about people who had passed over, she always felt that sounded so final, it was always passed away or even died but never "Dead"

Dare I say its because of how my parents were I am who I am and I think that I don't touch other people lives and probably I don't but I know myself that I am respected and well liked by those I come into contact with. But you still have open the door, close it and be on your own.

I'd forgotten today is St George's Day but unlike the Welsh, the Irish and Scots who celebrate their saints England doesn't seem to make much of the occasion.

Right, I better away to make a little meal, have something to drink and get some sleep. Do you think I will succeed? No, neither do I.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Mum's Gone...

Last night was difficult. I held Mum's hand all night and kept telling her how much she meant to me.

This morning her breathing pattern changed. She stared into space and could not really respond but I believe she understood and was able to hear what I was saying.

Perhaps around 8am I happened to say something, kissed Mum's forehead and then her lips. She responded and kissed me back and I have never felt such a strong kiss and it must've taken all her strength but I guess she was giving me a farewell kiss.

At least Mum is out of her suffering and pain and its a new life for me.

I am listening to Mum's favourite music radio programme as I write this and am surprised that am finding it reasonably easy to continue to do so. I didn't think that I would.

The idea of most blogs is to remain anonymous and someone may recognise Mum and in turn work out who I am but I am going to post two images of Mum. One taken approx 6 years ago when I purchased a digital camera and the second taken approx 6 months ago.

As plans take shape and things are arranged I'll post more. There was a lot to blog about and probably will be again but at present its all a bit flat.

Thanks for all the comments and good wishes and support.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

It's All Gone Horribly Wrong...

Where should I start?

Thursday night Mum was in pain so they gave her some Morphine around 9pm...around 3am the same thing happened but she what was what and did manage to sleep. I came home around 8am and managed approx 6 hours sleep. Unbeknown to me they gave Mum some more at 8.30am.

Which might explain why she was staring into space and quite sleepy when I went in at 5pm.

However, I manged to feed her some tea and she ate what was served and we were happy.

They gave Mum some more at 7pm.

I stayed with Mum all of last night and around 3pm she went to sleep and slept peacefully and calmly but around 7.30am this morning started trembling/shaking/twitching and the nurse on duty wasn't happy. And told me not to go home.

The Manager of the home came for 8am and decided Mum should be given another dose of morphine and should now be given it every 4 hours. She has even talked of a syringe driver(which isn't good)

But when Mum does manage to communicate she still says she is not off her food and drink. And wants to but if she under the influence of morphine and getting so much how can she wake up enough to get the nourishment into her?

A friend who used work in a London hospital as a nurse and also has worked in care homes(including the one Mum is in)and has worked for the charity Marie Curie saying shaking could be a reaction to the morphine or a chest infection. Staring into space is another so perhaps they should hold off and see if she comes back to normal? Or am I clutching at straws?

If I got a Dr out at the weekend it would probably be a locum but if Mum could hang on until Monday I could talk to her/our Dr and get an opinion. It may not happen for a few days or she could surprise us all again...

Another resident is in for respite and has many things wrong with him and he's on maximum doses of morphine and says all the symptoms Mum has(he has had)and he thinks it could be a reaction to the morphine too and he says don't write Mum off. He thinks its a good sign they have not called in a Dr so there are more positives? I don't know.

It's all happened so quickly.

I'm getting ready to go and see her again, I only popped home for a couple of hours to do a few jobs that need doing.

I can't even talk to the Macmillan cancer charity helpline as its only open Mon-Fri 9am-8pm(I'd have thought many could do with help and advice at weekends)

Oh well...

Friday, April 20, 2012

A Night In The Armchair...

Mum had a reasonably good day but by evening was in pain and sneed pain relief...it took at least ninety minutes to kick in...

I hung around awhile and she still wasn't very good...

Hot and clamy...

Then around 3am she was in pain again and moaning and shouting out so needed more and again it took until approx 5.30am to work and when I left at 7.30am she was sleeping pain free and restful...

Getting ready to go again...

It was a busy night for the home as a new resident is shouting for a nurse and pressing his buzzer all the time, he's in for respite and does not have dementia...and the police were in for other reasons(I suspect not good ones)

See you soon...

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Another Nuisance...

I've always gone to sleep with a radio on very quietly, perhaps for the last 45 years. As you know these past few nights I've not been in my home or have come in so late(like today I did not put it on until 4am)

I happened to be downstairs at 5.30am and found a scribbled note on a brown envelope from our neighbour asking me to turn the radio down as its keeping her awake(more likely its my cough than the radio)its on so quiet I can hardly hear it!

There's always something.

Its kind of funny in one way because the noise we have to put up with from the opposite direction has driven us to distraction on occasions. And we've said nothing.

Its not as if the walls here are paper thin either...

Monday, April 16, 2012

A Better Day...

Considering the situation we're in...Sunday they'd given Mum a shower and we managed to have her sit in a chair in her bedroom for approx 4 hours(she even said that she might get up again in the evening)she didn't but the intention was there. They said they were happy to get Mum up again but if she did they wanted her to do so for at least half hour and not go straight back to bed.

Mum did eat well at teatime and managed some spaghetti hoops(admittedly pureed but still)some bread, some black forrest gateau, a biscuit and she had some tea, coffee and complan(I think that we close on 1,000 calories)

I stayed on until 1am and though willing to stay all night the Nurse on duty(I know)is one who isn't so keen, some are, some aren't(though they say otherwise)but as it happened Mum was calmer and sleeping reasonaly soundly. I even fell asleep for maybe an hour which I did not the previous night, I managed some sleep back at home so I hope I am more ready to do whatever I have to. I also hope my cold is improving but the last coughing bout was pretty bad but if I get it out of the way before I see Mum that's great.

So I'm away to get dressed, get my flasks filled and fill the carriers and I may get 7-8 hours in...

Take Care

Gildy x

Sunday, April 15, 2012

A New Twist!

We had a bit of a surprise not long after I wrote my post and had settled down to sleep and listen to the Titanic documentary...the phone went and you can guess what I was dreading. I'd only left the home maybe an hour earlier and Mum was settled and calm. She calling out for me and they couldn't calm her. They tried to have me talk to her on the phone but though I could hear her(she couldn't hear me)

So they came and got me and within minutes she was settled and though Mum wasn't asleep she was calm and restful, holding my hand and around 5am they turned her over and she finally went to sleep. So I've been in an armchair all night.

I managed a little nap and they kept me supplied with tea/biscuits and some very badly burned toast

And I was brought home so that at least saved me the taxi fares...

And I'll be going back by 2pm to listen to that radio show Mum likes and they are going to try and get Mum to sit up a bit, they think she'll do it for me...and they say I'm also an expert at getting her to eat

I should be trying to get some sleep but will probably have to pop into the supermarket when it opens at 10am. No doubt I'll catch up...

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Today Was Better...

though Mum was subdued and sleepy when I arrived. Another lonely resident in for respite care has taken to me so he wants to talk to me and if I step out of Mum's room if she's being turned or changed he wants to chat! Trouble is I am a caring person so what can I say?

Mum brightened up and did eat quite well(Bread and egg seperate on the plate but given together it was a bit like having an egg sandwich(I think they added some mayonaise to the egg)

She ate half a lemon cheesecake, a beaker of tea, a hovis digestive and a complan so that's near enough 800 calories. I gave Mum her medication tonight so I spread it out rather than giving it all at once. The music was playing again as I came home.

I'll try and get some sleep too and get set up again for tomorrow again...


I don't know much about it. I haven't see any movie or TV series about it and in many ways the media have romanticised a tragic event. The same is true that I have not looked up the event on the internet or read any books about it. I don't know how I feel about attention its getting 100 years on almost to the hour as I write this.

I see BBC Radio 2 is doing a special between 11.30pm and 2.30am called Minute by Minute and the newspaper listing suggests it will take a close look at the band/orchestra that was on board. Radio 5 has a special between 1am-5am too.

Perhaps I'll listen to both and for once see what I can learn and it could be interesting/enlightning.

The only fact I know is that the liner sank within two hours.


Friday, April 13, 2012

I Hope That Mum Will Be Alright Tonight...

perhaps I should have stayed...they did not rush me away but I was there until almost Midnight.

When I left Mum she was calm, sleeping soundly and not in pain but the Nurse is concerned about her and if she'll be ok so checked that they have a phone number for me...

Mum had a reasonable night with me and ate/ drank reasonably well...they've given Mum a new mattress worth £1,400 too the pump on the previous air mattress stopped working as it should and was noisy. This one has no pump.

But just as I was about to leave, Mum was sick(not much)a friend who is a nurse said it could be acid reflux through being in bed a lot or...morphine can cause it!

Mum managed a Hovis digestive biscuit and a small drink of tea before I left her.

I hope to see her tomorrow...all I keep hearing is that Mum is not a "Well Woman!" But we'll just have to see...

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Here's A Bit Of A Worry...

I had to inform the DWP that Mum is in a Nursing Home and that she/we are no longer entitled to a benefit regarding her care if she was at home which obviously she isn't :-(

So now they say they have to find out who is paying her care the NHS or the Local Authority.

So they have taken note of the home's address and telephone number.

Now I assume though we were told Mum's savings would not be touched nor her state pension(Could that now be a possibility?)Perhaps this arrangement was only temporary.

If they do, I assume Mum will only receive "Pocket" money whih I think is only approx £28 a week(and I can spend that on all the things I am trying to feed her to try and improve her health and build her up)

And then I am only on a small benefit myself weekly and it costs me £70 a week to visit Mum and I don't want to give up any visit or time I have with her, time is precious. So I wonder how all this will affect me. I don't think that I am entitled to any help regarding taxi's to the home.

But as I have just informed the DWP it will take a little time for them to sort things out I assume.

Money is likely to get even tighter...I don't care though as Mum is worth it and I'll do all that I can for her but I worry that I may not be able to.

I'm A Tiny Bit Earlier...

So, I am going to crack on and see if I can manage a little longer with Mum.

I was slightly warmer last night and slept more soundly. Possibly, because I actually wore a jumper in bed and allowed the heating to come on for a couple of hours but when I had to get out of bed to pay a call to the little room, the house did not seem any warmer. I was glad to get dive under the bedclothes.

On the other hand I find I am disturbed because my body starts to ache and I have to try and change positions to get comfortable. And that happens whether I lay for a short time or for ages.

See You Later...

I Forgot To Mention...

The other night whilst the staff at the home were caring from Mum and I was out of the room whilst they checked Mum out, I was in a lounge and got talking to a resident who was having respite care.

Its too complicated and long to go into but he happened to ask who the Social Worker was who had been dealing with our situation...I cannot tell you what his opinion is of said Social Worker...she has been involved with his case(he's unwell and his wife is too)

Seems she quite a reputation and one not to be envied. So it may well be Mum could be home(with care)but just maybe remembering how obsessed she has always been about getting Mum into a home, even before we reached this point...you do wonder.

I Should Go Straight To Bed...

But find myself messing around and seemingly finding anything to avoid doing so...

So I'm downloading updates to Windows Operating System which I have neglected to do(but I can leave the PC doing that without me monitoring what's happening)

The other night I downloaded a new version of my virus checker software.

I've thousands of files to edit and burn(don't think I'll ever get up to date...)Am I bothered, not sure...

I've been told that my home will become damp if I don't use the central heating for at least two hours daily, if we had a hot summer I probably could avoid doing so but if I have to put it on I'm going to see it comes on through the night so hopefully it will help keep me warmer during the night.

So the timer is on. And it will give me some water to have a wash and shave and to wash my flasks.

I have been packing my carriers for tomorrow...and just have to put in a few items from the fridge into them.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Another Cold Night At Gildy Towers...

Quilt and extra blankets on the bed and I was still cold. I snatched sleep...you know the kind you wake at 2am, 3am, 4am and so on.

Having said that, what is there to get up for? So today I didn't...I've only been up approx 20 minutes. The difference is that I have the choice...Mum sadly doesn't.

It's cold, wet and dull outside and not much else that I can add.

In some ways I prefer it that way as if something happens it will be something I'd rather did not happen.

I'll try and keep an interest in life and avoid getting depressed but I won't be surprised if to some extent this will be the pattern my life will follow in future years.

Anyhow, with no shopping to do lets see if I can get ready a little quicker and taxi's allowing see Mum a little earlier.

Mum Was Sleepy...

As I left her(I think they'd given her a sleeper)but earlier(though she did not eat as much as usual)she did eat one of those poached eggs and a lemon mousse and with the few drinks we did manage approx 500 calories.

To save time I went shopping at the supermarket on the way home, I haven't had a hot meal for ages but might try and do so, I know it will be an effort especially to do something like a Sunday lunch but perhaps I should. Then again, if I am at Mum's Nursing Home roughly 3pm-10pm doing that kind of meal outside of those hours I probably wouldn't feel like having it.

I found a few food items on offer(half price)chicken dippers, chicken burgers etc...fish fingers and some sliced meat. They'll keep me going and the potatoes were half price. I guess when money gets even tighter I will be depending and watching out for more of these bargains. But I am managing quite well on sandwiches and salads etc...

I did still manage to forget two items(but that's not bad)from memory and/or just wandering around the store. It was marmite and branston pickle. I'm just happy that I am still able to eat at present.

By the time I caught a taxi, shopped and put everything away remarkably three hours have passed but at least I don't have to do any shopping tomorrow. So I have no excuse if I am late seeing Mum.

And I think I have a few surprises from the shopping trip that Mum may like too.

If its still hot I have some tomato soup in a flask I can have, a packet of crisps and a flask of tea or coffee. And I'll dive under the blankets and get warm. And hopefully get some sleep.

Monday, April 09, 2012

More Stuff To Try And Help Mum...

I have bought some of those powders similar to Slim Fast. I think they could be a great idea...I have a tub of cafe latté, vanilla, banana and strawberry and I can add them to whole milk. Wish I thought of them sooner. Most say they can replace a meal and the average calorific value per drink is 200 calories.

They seem to have lots of vitamin content too.

I always thought of them being for slimmers who are trying to avoid putting on weight and avoiding meals but I see that they could be a great way of building up someone who is off their food or ill as a supplement...

Wish that I had considered them sooner.

You Know They Might Still Get Me Out Of My House...

Not directly because of the changes in benefits as such but because heating a house rather than a bedsit is too expensive and a house is too cold to keep the central heating on.

When I came home last night, by the time I went to bed I was shivering and now as I rise and get ready to go and see Mum I am just as cold. I suspect its warmer outside. If it's like this in April..."What the hell is it going to be like when Winter returns?"

Whether I sleep or not, it does mean I spend a lot of time in bed when I return home.

Well must dash!

Need to go to the supermarket for some milk and basics. I'll see what else I can find for Mum.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Hope I Am Not Tempting Fate...

But I contacted a friend Mum used to go to a church with and she hasn't seen for a number of years but she used to go and pray for me and my well being.

She's moved away but I found her telephone number and she's going to put us into their prayers as an on going thing at their chapel.

And I am thinking of contacting the local church Mum used to attend before she was more housebound to see if they'll include her in their prayers too...

Well, I'm away...if I can manage to get a taxi and not have to wait I'll get an extra hour with Mum.


You know, if money is tight if/when I live alone and I only have a little basic furniture such as a bed, my second hand computers, cooker, washer and an old sofa.

I am wondering whether its worth having insurance? I think our's costs quite a bit just for contents now and that's in Mum's name and we've never made a claim.

I'm not sure that I could afford it even if I wanted it.

If I had something valuable perhaps I can see the point but as I haven't, I don't.

These days most property has smoke alarms and windows that have a lock to avoid break ins. And fire and theft are probably the two things you insure against.

Saturday, April 07, 2012

I Opened...

Mum's Cadbury's chocolate Button Easter Egg tonight to give her some of the buttons and...it was empty! There wasn't any buttons inside...

What Can Staff Do?

Interestingly, I am allowed to tempt Mum with food but if the staff ask Mum if she wants to eat something and she says "No!" They cannot make Mum eat. Mum said to me she is not off her food or drink as yet. I stepped out of her room briefly to make a phone call.

I found staff had asked if she wanted anything and she only asked for a cup of tea and nothing else but when I mentioned would she would try something with me, she said yes. So perhaps its just as well that I go as regularly as I do...and perhaps I should pop in earlier in the day occasionally.

In one way she gets 24 hour care, in other ways I suspect I'm still doing a fair bit!

It may depend on a trusts attitude/rules and regulations and even the layout of a hospital. Perhaps because of the age it was built but I wasn't impressed with the care Mum got in our local hospital and its not the first time I've heard criticism9you could say people will be critical when they feel their loved ones are involved)but the husband of a friend of Mum's lost his wife approx 6 months ago and his experience in the same hospital of the lack of care for his wife is a catalogue of disasters.

And his son lectures in medical care at a college or university and was originally a nurse. Well, this person has just been in Cornwall where his sister passed away in hospital and though she passed away the whole family say the care she received was superb and they are so impressed they have written a letter into the trust to praise how she was looked after.

I know from what he has said in the past, if they feel able to do this, the care really must have been of a high standard.

Unlike where Mum was initially, this same hospital in Cornwall allowed whoever was visiting to stay with the patient, setting up a bed in the same room and there were no restrictions on how long you could stay with the patient.

More hospitals could learn more about care of both patients and those who that patient means so much to.

After she passed away they were only meant to allow you to make one phone call to relatives to inform what has happened, they allowed him to make five...

Getting Ready To See Mum Again...

She's underweight still and probably seen as weak medically but Mum is still all for the op and the colostomy if offered and another shot of Radio Therapy but since coming out of hospital and being placed in the home none of this is even mentioned.

But they seem always pleased that Mum has not given up on taking in nourishment in the home. And just maybe that could mean they might reconsider? She did say that her bottom was sore last night.

I'm not surprised.

I wish that I could think of other things that I could give Mum to eat and drink, she must get tired of the same old selection. Then again, the home only offers a few things...eggs, mousse, milk shakes, tea, coffee, yogurts, soup, sponge cake. And I don't do much better.

I usually have mousse, complan, tea, coffee, soup, milk shakes, fruit juice, smoothies, biscuits, eggs, yogurts, soup, chocolate, much the same selection when you look at things. I need items high in calories or that can be fortified to build her up.

Friday, April 06, 2012

Before I Go...

You know that I have mentioned before about being worried about having a roof over my head and whether I'll be able to continue to claim financial help being that I am not in good health after Mum passes away.

I might've been able to manage until the new rules and criteria were introduced by the coalition Government we have in power who are going after seemingly everyone that they can and keep saying "We're all in this together!" and really they have no idea as most have a nice nest egg or investments and are mainly millionaires.

I keep being told I have nothing to fear and in my case having lived here 50+ years and having had my name on the rent card for almost 30 years I am safe.

I like the area that I live, I like the fact it is near the shops etc...and it is a safe neighbourhood.

I might concede a smaller house/bedsit might be better for me as a single person and that a three bed roomed house would be better given to a family but on the other hand I don't want to be put just anywhere nor do I want to move to a different town. Also there are very few small properties available so where are they to be found?

There has just been a letter in a local free sheet that popped through the door where someone has not had a permanent home for maybe 20 years+ but has finally managed to get back onto this town and been given a two bed roomed house and it means he can live near to and look after his aged mother.

But as he says now thanks to the new rules coming in he will lose or have to pay £13 for the spare bedroom he will not be using and he says its unfair when there are no properties available from the Housing Association that runs all the social housing in the area cannot offer anything smaller.

Another fair point he makes is that you may need a spare room for visitors, guests or returning family members as none of us know what the future holds but whilst that room is empty you'll still have to find £13.

And we all know that even if you could move into a smaller property eventually the rent will rise so you will end up paying probably what you were paying for the property you moved out of.

Its tempting to go into private property and hope you get a decent landlord but once you do that if things go wrong you are back to square one.

Someone said on the radio that the problem is that rents are too high and that's probably due to private landlords and rents should really come down, if that happened tenants might be able to afford to live there or the Government might be less likely to withdraw Housing Benefit. Its not going to happen. Its not helped by the Government using  London and similar cities to judge the whole country.

Proper Social Housing is better priced but the problem is that there is some kind of condition that was brought in some time ago where the rents are raised and they look at private properties in the area as guide as to what they should charge. Far better if they could put pressure on others to bring rents down.

Isn't life wonderful!

How Morbid Is This?

I felt really guilty/bad doing this as Mum is still here but I popped into the local Co-op Funeral Directors to find out some details.

I was told to make a funeral plan could actually work out more expensive than paying at the time. I was told prices have just gone up in the last week or two.

Also, to consider having the funeral at the crematorium because most of Mum's friends relatives are no longer around so a Church service may be quite empty.

I dared to bring up the subject with Mum and she still wants a church service so whether there are few attending I'll follow her wishes. I also discovered though there are quite a few pieces of music Mum might like(Religious or songs that she liked)you can have only have one played at the Crematorium and at a Church service you are allowed two.

So I suspect the hymn will be "What A Friend We Have in Jesus" and the other song that Mum tends to sing a lot will be Doris Day's "Que Sera, Que Sera"

Its awful how many people of Mum's age I keep hearing they do/and can cure of or work around such a serious disease as Cancer and yet have they given up on Mum? Should we be fighting.

She has said herself why have they not offered the colostomy or talked about the possibility? Or as its a slow one are we still with in the window where she could still be able to have it. After all, by my reckoning officially we still have not reached the 6 months after the treatment in October I think we're in week 22.

On the other hand the home keep praising her for eating and trying to get her energy up and weight increased. If we did would they consider the possibility of trying something?

Early days, after all she's only been in the home 17 days...and if you include the time in hospital it's 24 days.

I think I've said before...unless I get into a relationship late in life(I don't see it happening)my savings will be so low and again like Mum so few people are around(family/friends)I'm not sure I will even bother arranging a funeral for myself. I'll let the authorities do it and if there's any money it can go towards what it costs. After all I won't be here.

I'll have gone to a better place or if there isn't anywhere, I won't know. After all my personal possessions will be dumped and won't mean anything to anyone. That's assuming I am still independent and living somewhere.

I may end up in a home needing care. Who knows? I won't have enough to pay for the care, the state will have to pay anyhow.

Enough...I'm away to get ready and see my lovely Mum!

By the way, after such a morbid post...

Happy Easter to everyone who reads my blog!

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Home And Ready For Bed I Suppose...

Mum had spent most of today in bed...

I don't know what she had eaten before I arrived but I managed a little bit of Egg custard tart, double yolk poached eggs, milk shake, a health drink, coffee with sugar and brandy, mousse(I reckon that's approx 1,000 calories)

 I think that being a Christian Nursing Home(possibly as its Easter)someone may come in and give a little service. I think they said they will get Mum up in the morning for a little while.

Having said that Mum was peaceful, pain free and comfortable and in a nice sleepy state. So I should not complain.

A wheelchair that has some kind of cover on it that turns it into a kind of armchair has been taken away from Mum(it was there from the first couple of days in the home...and today her table on wheels which we often placed things including her mp3 music player and speakers had disappeared too. I assume given to another person? Oh well...

Just A Quickie!

I hope to be away earlier today(He said!)My stomach is going round and my mind cannot rest so better that I do something even though I'm not really interested in mundane every day things.

Just had another bill arrive regarding Mum's care when she was at home covering the period just before Mum went into hospital/nursing home. So that's another £106.94 to pay.

You know I wish I Mum was at home and I was paying that for years and years. Mum's worth it.

Not much that I can add...

Having One Of My Funny Nights!

I guess its natural and though there are positives amongst the negatives, I'd be telling lies if I did not say that I have times where I get troubled sleep and feelings over what is happening. Tonight is one of those nights.

I was really late tonight and missed feeding her at teatime. They say that she sat up in the lounge quite a bit of the day and watched a kind of show they put on to enterain the residents(Mum says she slept through it)

I got one of my eggs safely to the home(and thought I'd leave it in the kitchen for today)and then managed to smash it later in the evening but I have four remaining and Mum says she'll have one today!

As I left her she was painfree and resting peacefully with her music playing...

I will go earlier today and make certain that I do...I'm not letting anything get in my way...

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

By It's Cold In Here...

Its warmer in Mum's Nursing home!

I'm frightened to put the heating on especially if anything happens to Mum soon and with my money dropping so much.

We're weren't "well off" but with Mum's money and mine combined we always made certain we ate well and kept the place warm.

I just got my monthly payment of benefits yesterday and the gas bill arrived today covering the period of winter and when Mum was here and I had to find £507.90 almost wiping out what I was given(and when I pay my rent for the next 4 weeks)that's the rest of it, gone! I say rent...I should say water rates.

Luckily, not knowing what was to happen to Mum I'd put £500 onto my credit card so I was in credit by £595 so this time I was able to use that to pay the gas bill.

I guess the next bill will be the electric(but we're in credit by £200 some how)so that will be not so high this quarter and the phone bill which I hope will not be too bad as I haven't really been using it.

My life tends to be getting up, get ready for visiting Mum. When I get home going straight to bed.

Update:Just had a phone call, some good news(We need it!)my blood tests were fine so hopefully I'm OK until the next check up!

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Well That Was A Surprise...

I went into the home around 3.30pm and was about to go into the lift with my carriers of stuff and looked towards the main lounge and thought..."Is that Mum?" I did a double take and yes...it was.

Seemingly she had had some lunch and I don't know how long she had been in the lounge but she was there until almost 6pm. Before Mum went back to her room.
Now the reason I had to look twice was...this morning they had washed, cut and styled Mum's hair. A little short but everyone said it suited her.

I fed Mum her evening meal and she had poached egg with wholemeal toast, followed by sponge cake and two beakers of coffee and one of tea and that was followed later in her own room with a Complan. So I reckon that is around 1000+ calories. And they thought Mum looked brighter today.

But there is a little twist, having had my bloods taken earlier in the day, our market was on in town(it gets smaller each week it seems)I don't usually get to it myself. However there was an egg stall and I wished I'd purchased more now but he was selling double yolk eggs for £1.45 a half dozen.

Well, I can spend much more than that in the supermarket for a one yolk egg. So I took one in for Mum's tea and they cooked it and it was lovely. And its the yolk that has the goodness.

I plan to buy more next week but you watch he'll probably not turn up. From my point of view I usually crack two or three eggs when I make scrambled egg...with a double yolk, I don't need do that and half a dozen is like having a dozen! Mum says she'll have another tomorrow.

The weather is atrocious, there is a swirling wind and ice forming on the ground and windowsills and sleet and snow blowing around everywhere. If that freezes it will be fun going into the home tomorrow...

If I Get There A Bit Earlier...

Perhaps I can get more nourishment into Mum. I am going to aim for 2pm today and that will be eight hours. I will take my usual selection of goodies in for Mum and I have a sausage roll today(I can but try)

I have purchased half a dozen double yolk eggs on the market(they sometimes do poached eggs at the home)I am wondering whether to take one in and ask them to do it for Mum. The yolk is the important bit. Perhaps I should have purchased a dozen?

But I'm not using the food as I was, even for me. I am mainly living on sandwiches and soup. And grabbing something when I come home or if time allows taking some sandwiches into the home with me.

I'm going to have a lie down for half an hour and then start getting ready. If I don't I know what will happen...

Monday, April 02, 2012

How Many People Are Prisoners In Their Own Homes...

Either due to illness and/or economic reasons?

Even if you could save, you daren't because your financial help will be taken away and its hard to get it back again. If you receive state help you are frightened that if you look as though you are having a good period(and temporary)the same thing could happen and you never know if someone is watching and going to phone some "Shop a scrounger" phoneline.

Then, its so easy to spend the money that you receive...I mean today I'm off to do a small shopping trip(I live only a few streets from the supermarket)but I am so slow and I will struggle so much I will have to use a taxi and that will add £6(return)to what I buy. And once I visit Mum at the home that's another £10 so today that will be £16 in taxi fares alone. If I walk I'll pay for it later.

Use a bus? I'd have to walk to the bus route, be restricted on the times the busses are available etc...

It's difficult.

Anyone Leaving Comments...

It appears the blog is playing up again, having said that it seems to have settled down again, I hope it stays that way...

The phone has just rang and I thought the worst as you can imagine but there was no number to contact. I phoned the home and they said Mum had a comfortable night, is taking the pain killers but had not had any lunch today.

She then said Mum was looking good but corrected that as when someone is thin, can you say that? I think Mum is quite bright but for the lack of body weight.

And we know that Mum is terminal(after all what is palliative care?)

No, that's not fair I suppose it can mean that a condition is being controlled?

But thank heavens it was not the call I dreaded for now...

Having said that I'm sure that the Nursing home said Mum had eaten some brown rice?

I'll try and find out about that.

I better disappear and get some items for Mum(at the shops)and get ready to visit again...

Sunday, April 01, 2012

As I Head Off To Bed...

Mum was not in pain most of the day, warm and comfortable and holding my hand a lot of the time. I arrived later than planned, what's new, but we listened to the radio.

Mum had a milk shake, celery soup, coffee with whole milk and a little brandy and a kind of white chocolate/strawberry mousse in cream, I reckon that's around 860 calories...

But she was in considerable pain as I left her and needed some Orimorph(which she dislikes having to take)

I do hope she manages to have a decent night's sleep. Difficult when they keep turning you every two hours and checking if you need changing every 4-6 hours. Here Mum never had to be turned and keeping her skin in good condition was done simply with moisturising cream. They don't do that in the home. And I did not need to change Mum as often either. I don't think that side of things has changed.

I started giving Mum her vitamins again today(including the Cod Liver)garlic, cranberry and one that is the equivelent of eating 6 ripe tomatoes.

I left the mp3 player on as I came home. I have been told they leave Mum's music on through the night(as we did at home)

They have to have a break but as I came home all the staff seemed to be in a kind of conservatory that's attached to the home and having a smoke...It's kind of funny as one looks like Jo Brand and you kind of think of that comedy series she did about caring for people. I hope its not like that when visitors go home.

Feeling a bit melancholic I must admit, I have all the lovely music of David Jacobs programme playing on the radio until midnight but I am thinking of how Mum and I listened together and yet I must not stop listening and cutting myself off from doing so. And the music collection I have on my computers and CD's. I could switch and probably will to the speech output of Radio 5 at Midnight but nothing in the news seems to be of any importance or interest. I suppose its a voice instead of just silence.

I have my tests coming up again on Tuesday for my medical condition(I hope that all will be well)and I know at some point I will have to spend time in hospital having an operation and that I will be facing it alone when the time comes. The two are not connected.

Just Adding Some Extra Music To Mum's mp3 Player...

Then getting the flasks ready, shaving then I am off to see Mum, hopefully earlier than usual so we can share listening to Mum's favourite Sunday music programme on the radio all afternoon, a bit like old times so I hope its a good day and there is not much to report other than its not such a bad day.

So my next post may not be until late tonight/early tomorrow...

She managed a little bit of bread and spaghetti hoops at teatime and milk shake, tea, water and a complan throughout the evening...I reckon approx 800 calories being there earlier today I may get a few more calories into Mujm(I hope)as long as she still eats and drinks(the time to worry is if/when she gives up and won't have either)