I am washing the quilt that I made for my Mum several years ago. It usually resides on her bed in the hospital wing of the retirement home she lives in.
This is my Mum, Eve.
Two weeks ago, she was 82 on November the 1st, and for the last seven years ( since my Dad died) she has been living in a small room, in a large retirement home, just ten minutes away from our farm.
I took the photo with my IPhone in a cafe here at Mum's faourite place.
Kaiteriteri. Lots of happy memories for her here with my Dad, swimming and sunbathing.
Ian and I take Eve out at the weekends. Sometimes she just comes home with us, and we feed her yummy foods that she doesn't have at the rest home. Eve loves to spend time with her great grandchildren.
Today I am feeling slightly powerless on her behalf. She has been told by the nursing care manager of her home that she can no longer enjoy daily showers. She is to be showered twice a week and the rest of the time will have to make do with a wash in the morning, and another in the evening.
For Eve this is devastating. She is paralysed on one side of her body( since she was 50 yrs old) and spends all her time in a wheelchair, and the time she has by herself in her shower chair in her bathroom, is something she looks forward to so much. Many times I have visited her room and I have heard her singing away in the shower.
I have made earnest and heartfelt pleas for her this morning, but all to no avail.
One more loss for her that has seen her stripped of practically everything ( especially freedom of choice ) in the last seven years, her life reduced to a small room overlooking a carpark !
I was told that is is standard practice for ALL the aged in hospital care of the rest homes throughout NZ.