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I Just Want To See My Mother

I Just Want To See My Mother

It’s no secret that family is important to us all. It’s also no secret that it becomes tough for some of us to see our parents get older and need additional care and assistance to manage day-to-day. The decision to place our loved ones in the care of assisted-living facilities is often a tough one to make but in some cases necessary to ensure they are getting the attention and care they need. Throughout this COVID-19 pandemic, one of the primary concerns has been how this virus affects the elderly and other vulnerable populations. A weighing concern for some has been around the precautions and extra measures that have and must be taken to protect those they love that occupy these assisted-living facilities. 

Substantial magazine sat down with two of its readers to talk about how they’ve been finding ways to cope and manage not being able to see their mothers during this pandemic. 

Sharon Adams has her mother currently living in a rehab nursing facility. The decision came after her mother had neck surgery that left her unable to walk and fully take care of herself at home. Sharon tells us the decision to place her mother in the home was hard, but was necessary as she was at high risk of falling while home and she would have to leave work for hours at a time to visit her and take care of her day-to-day needs. Sharon told us that she and her husband would go and visit her mother during the weekends, take her things and spend time with her often. Then COVID-19 hit.

When the early news of COVID-19 was shared, Sharon tells us she believes her mother’s facility was one of the first to really start to lockdown and put in place real restrictions to protect their residents. She also believes this is why the facility may have had a few scares but no confirmed cases. 

Sharon couldn’t visit at all early into the pandemic. The facility also wasn’t accepting any packages or mail. She said it wasn’t until Mother’s Day that they eased a few of those restrictions and could send flowers and small care packages. She says that the facility also planned a surprise Mother’s Day parade that allowed families to drive by and see their families. 

The parade was really well planned out by the facility. They had families come out in time slots based on the hall their loved ones lived on. When asked about her participation, Sharon says her husband drove and she had signs made and balloons for the special event. She said her mother was so surprised and cried because she got to see them from a distance. 

As of late, Sharon has been able to send her mother care packages that include food, clothes, toiletries and other care products that she likes. She said they find moments to chat via Facetime and connect from a safe social distance from the facilities courtyard. 

When we sat down with Darryl Lester he shared a similar story, having his mother living in a senior care home in Charlotte, NC. Darryl shared with us that he would go and visit his mother twice a day at one point. Now they’ve had to hire a paid sitter who sits six-days a week to help him and his sister leverage technology such as Echo Show, Facetime or Zoom to see their mom. When possible and allowed he shared he tries to sneak and speak to her from her room window. 

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He shared with us that no families are allowed in the facility and that it’s been difficult. The most difficult part is not being in the room with her to touch her. With her being partially unresponsive, Darryl shared that his mother finds comfort in knowing that one of her loved ones is in the room there with her. 

When asked if he was hopeful that they would be able to physically be in the space again with his mother, Darryl shared that he prays for some sort of new normal that will allow for in-person visits when it is deemed acceptable by the right medical professionals safe to do so. 

There is no doubt that not being able to see your loved ones is hard; especially right now during a time when it’s uncertain if you may ever physically be able to do so.

To all those finding unique ways to see your loved ones right now, hang on to hope and continue to practice every precaution necessary to keep them safe. 

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