UH OH. UNKNOWN NUMBER. I have to answer it because I’m on point for hospital contact. Oh. Mental Capacity Act guy. He’s going to interview my father this afternoon. He asks things and I answer him, trying to paint the most accurate picture of what I’ve seen and experienced with my father and the situation at home prior to this hospitalisation and
Round and round we go.
I went through this yesterday – at least it ain’t the piddle and poop stuff. This is the mind. This is my expertise. There is a direct relationship to all my father has been in his life and what it is that he says in his delusional states… or most of the time.
It will take its toll on my father. He will find it intrusive and partially offensive, because he is no longer aware of the free fall he’s in mentally.
But above all, it’s up to us – to me (as the clearest thinker here) – to get this done with the optimum speed possible. To get my father safe and looked after for the rest of his life.
I’m not putting him away; I’m finding him sanctuary.
So I put the phone call out of my mind and bang onto the Clinical website, pump in our address and do a search. Two in ten miles… and twenty and so on until fifty miles. This is going slowly. What do I want? I want the best for all of us. Does this mean compromise? Yes. Why? It’s logical to assume that even in the best of the Homes, he may be left to his own desires a lot of the time – no different from now. If the Home is far away, it won’t be easy to get to – or will it? This one… 30 miles away in one direction is in a town served by the railway as is the one 40 miles away in the other… both about an hour on the train. That’s very do-able. But…
There’s one right on the doorstep. The local reputation is not that good. The Clinical website report, from a couple of years ago, is not that good. It nearly always has places – which seems to me to indicate it isn’t that good… but… it’s almost literally on the doorstep. It’s closer to the house than the bus stop. If my mother is unattended, on a good day she can go there alone.
But it’s not that good…
We can walk there…
It’s not that good…
She can walk there… alone.
Sod this. Need fresh input; phone a friend. Does she still know that woman working in a care home? She’s the manager now? Could she set up an informal meeting with her for me, I need to pick her brains… We hang up and I potter, waiting; pounce on the phone when she calls back. What’s that, they’re full, but yes, I can go down for a chat? Great – the phone number? So I call, go down, beg forgiveness for my cheekiness and say that it’s natural to use all the connections one can think of to gather information to make the right decision. The manager nods, not quite knowingly, so I need to hammer the point home.
So I told her that if she had any questions about the type of services – which are well-known and used – that I’m involved in and she doesn’t ask me (as a friend of a friend) to cast an eye over any deal, I would be offended. Not because I’m touting for business, but because I know my business inside out. I watch her consider this almost faster than the mind can register, and her manner changes. Now she gets it; and I get an honest and straightforward list of what to do and how to proceed – along with where to look… and what my actions could be, depending on priority. Basically, she confirms all I’ve done and clarifies my thought on my actions to come.
I thank her and it’s back to sorting this out. My head is straight and mind is clearer. I have a plan.
Get him out of hospital and into the closest place, monitor the whole thing minutely and if it isn’t working… go elsewhere.
Right here, right now, I feel a weight lift off my shoulders. It’s the weight of the cloak of uncertainty. I have proposals for a way forward; the lack of contact with my father is damaging for all of us, the travelling is unravelling us and the general languishing in limbo, with nothing seeming to happen, is sucking us deeper into a slough of despond than I could have thought possible… so we get him close.
Those I need to email, I email. Those at home nearby… I’ll see them in a couple of days; I gotta keep my head clear and together. Everyone’s trusting me to come up with a plan and to work it, so I’m going to do just that.
And I have to do it alone.
I have to get ‘this’ done, then worry about everything else later; this… nothingness had gone on for far too long.