Yesterday morning Maureen and I had two really contrasting experiences. I had a good morning with my meeting with our social worker and Admiral Nurse going really well. Maureen had a distressing morning feeling that Chloe was here as she is not safe to be left on her own . Maureen now feels that carers are providing a babysitting service for her. Hence her question in the evening of: ‘Are you babysitting me tonight?’
Maureen has also posed why we need ‘the ladies’ at all? She wants us to ‘do things as a couple again’, and resents the intrusion of carers in our affairs. She makes a fair point, and were I in her position I would be raising the same question. One of the benefits of working with Sue, our new social worker, is that she stresses the need to keep our options open with a flexible Care Plan.
I don’t know what we would do at the moment without our flexible friend: a social worker who accepts the dynamic nature of dementia. She has also accepted that Maureen and I will travel this journey in Our Own Peculiar Way. This means that we want to choose our own path, rather than follow the beaten track of the biomedical model. I have mentioned on several occasions that Irving Kirsch and Kate Swaffer are our spiritual guides. Therefore our views on chemical imbalance as a determinant of mood and Prescribed Disengagement as a way of life are fundamental to our approach to our journey.
It would be hypocritical of us all not to consider Maureen’s assertion that she doesn’t need baby sitting. She has rightly issued a healthy challenge to us all, and it needs to be given very careful consideration. Interesting times lay ahead as Maureen begins to regain confidence and become assertive. No complaints from this quarter: it’s all evidence that the holistic medicine that is being applied daily is taking effect. All I need to remember is that Maureen ‘is not ill she is recovering from stroke’, and sometimes she needs to rest!