This week is Dementia Awareness Week, and to commemorate this week The Good Care Group want to share some of the wonderful stories that our Carers have given us. We hope you find them enjoyable and inspiring!
Hazel wrote to me to tell me that she is currently caring for a lovely lady with fronto-temporal dementia. The very fact that Hazel started her letter with these words made me smile - many people describe those with fronto-temporal dementia as 'challenging' or 'complex', but rarely 'lovely' - so I knew that this story was coming from someone with a big heart. Hazel's story continues below:
"I came to just cover for a week as the placement was a very challenging one and a lot of the carers could not cope with the client. On my first night I was very scared of her and found I could not cope either and wanted to leave the next day. But I thought about it and decided to give it a go because I like a challenge and won't give up that easily. That was in January this year, after a week with her and by the time I left I found there was a connection between us. I found her to be the most wonderful woman, and I asked my manager if I could come back and have her as my permanent placement. My manager could not believe it but was glad to see we got on so well. I am now her permanent carer and really enjoy working with her. This weekend has been the most wonderful. It has been very hard in the past to give her personal care because she didn't trust anyone to touch her, but this weekend she let me wash her and even did her feet which haven't been washed in months. She also let me put powder on her and help her dress. It was hard work but I persevered and she trusts me now. Yesterday we had a lovely lunch together and I even took her out for a long walk where she picked some flowers. When we got back put the flowers in a vase and she sat in her chair looked at took my hand, kissed it and said "thank you, I've had a lovely day". I had tears in my eyes and thought 'this is why I love my job'. My client has been very calm and slept all through the night since I've been here. I have learnt so much in this placement and would love to share it with all my colleagues and staff."
Zoe Elkins, Head of Care, The Good Care Group