It has been two years since Kate had to go into care. I had suspected for about two years before that Kate’s memory was getting worse. Just before Christmas Kate went to our doctor, who asked if she wanted help with her memory. Kate had a scan and we did not hear anything for over a month.
Kate was diagnosed as suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. I looked after her until she went into a nursing home for respite. When Kate came back home she was very resistant and would not let me help. Our two daughters and their families came for the weekend, but she did not seem to recognise them. She clung to me; I had become her sole support. She grew very loving and would not let me leave her even for a short while.
One morning when I checked on Kate she was sitting on her bed totally confused. I went to help but she became verbally aggressive and pushed me away. At that point I gave up and had a breakdown brought on stress and lack of sleep. I managed to contact Kate’s sister who came and took care of everything. My eldest daughter was sent for, and arrived at the same time as the doctor and Kate’s social worker. I was totally confused and still cannot remember what happened. Heartbroken, I was persuaded to let Kate go into care and that afternoon she was admitted to St George’s Hospital Stafford. Kate was a patient there for a year, until April last year when she went to a private nursing home, just a few miles from me.
I was surprised and very grateful at the level of support which appeared from Social Services and CASS. I was offered support from the local Alzheimer’s café and went to a well being group.
Eventually I became strong enough to carry on and have started doing voluntary work. I visit Kate as often as possible and at times she seems to recognise me.