Thursday, January 7, 2010

A simple pole helps Mom be more independent.

NOTE:  This was originally posted with title that's a bit cheeky (it referred to "pole dan cin') but I got all kinds of nasty automated comments advertising porn sites so I changed the title and reposted.   It really erks me that I'm trying to do something beneficial and those rotten bastards mess it up.

Mom's ALF installed a great new device for her.  It means that she can be more independent and I have something to tease her about.   They put in a "pole"  next to her chair.   The center of it has a rubberized "sleeve" that gives her something to grip as she rises from her chair.  She still has good arm strength so can pull herself up to her feet, then she takes a small step or two and, still hanging on, pivots into her wheelchair.  It means she's able to get herself into and out of her wheel chair without help.  She feels better since she doesn't have to call for help as often and I worry less about her falling. 

The pole itself works like a giant tension rod between the floor and ceiling.  There is a flared sort of stand on the floor and a larger piece at the top where the pole meets the ceiling.

Here's a photo of the "stand" where the pole meets the floor.  It's relatively flat and not wide so Mom won't trip over it: (The news paper looks pretty messy but it's mom's favorite past time )

Here's the top of the pole, where it meets the ceiling:

I tried to find some brand name on the pole but could not.   There is a label about a distributors name but it's in the United Kingdom.   If anyone is interested in finding one of these for their home, I'd suggest asking a physical therapist or a pharmacy that also sells wheelchairs shower chairs, handholds for the bathroom and other "safety" products.   I'll try to find out more from the ALF and will share it here as I can.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Finally!! Mom had a good day!

This evening I finally heard the attitude in Mom that I've been praying for.  Mom told me that she had a good day and that she enjoyed the young people that worked at the ALF!   Today, for the first time in 7 months, I left her room without feeling guilty.  I will leave town after a weeks' visit without feeling guilty.  I know she'll still have some bad days and bad moods but for now I am so VERY, VERY relieved.   It's an enormous weight off my mind.  

Her good day started with good conversation.  Her tablemate's son visited during breakfast and they had quite a talk about the railroad and the men - my uncles - who worked there.   She also had some fun with the other women in her dining room; they schemed about practical jokes that they could play on other residents and the aides.  It's refreshing that her spirited side can still come through. 

Mom seemed to sense that I needed to hear something positive from her.  She's missed having people go in and out of her home; it's been a long time since lively young people ran in and out.  She enjoyed the aides that came in to plop down on her bed for a few minutes to take a breather and check on her.  She likes that they feel comfortable enough to stretch out on her bed or sit for a coffee or soda with her.  I'm liking that she's feeling at home and so comfortable with the other residents and staff.