Saturday, June 27, 2020

Jane: The Visit

Ten days ago, the governor of Vermont lifted the restrictions on visits to residents of elder care facilities. The state Department of Health issued guidelines for visits and, based on that, Sky's facility issued their own -- outdoors only, six foot distance, everyone in masks, and the visitors questioned about possible symptoms of the virus and had their temperature taken. Visits must be scheduled, only two visitors per resident, only one visit per week, maximum 30-45 minutes. No exchange of gifts, obviously no touching.

I wasn't sure I wanted to visit Sky. I was concerned that it would upset him -- seeing me, and then having me leave him instead of bringing him home. That he would be agitated afterwards. That he wouldn't understand the masks and the no touching. That it would just be too hard on him.

I decided to wait, and get a report from the facility as to how other residents were handling these strange new visits.

The report came a few days ago -- people were enjoying them, and there didn't seem to be any fallout.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Jane: Uncertainty in the Age of Coronavirus

My last two blog posts were about "Respite" in the Age of Coronavirus. However Sky is no longer on respite at the memory care center, but is now a permanent resident. Given that the world is still topsy-turvy, it seemed the best thing to do. So I signed all the papers, and wrote the big check, and there he stays.

It's lonely without him, and it's also peaceful. I sleep through the night every night now, unless I am woken up by a cat doing some kind of cat-thing, like throwing up, meowing at me, or getting into a fight. Luckily, Sayer and Emma were still up the night the raccoon tried to come in through the cat door, so I happily slept through that event. Sleep is a wonderful thing.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Jane: Respite in the Age of Coronavirus #2

The world has changed since I posted last. And so has my life. And so has Sky's life.

I am looking out onto beautiful Lake Champlain, having left our home in Burlington for our camp in northern Vermont on the Canadian border. If we're going to be on lockdown, what better place to be than out in the country, with a view of the mountains and the lake, on a road that crosses into Canada and therefore has very little traffic given that the border is now closed to all but commercial traffic? It's quiet and peaceful -- maybe too quiet and peaceful.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Jane: Respite in the Age of Coronavirus

A month ago, I looked into a respite program offered by one of our local memory care facilities. I had not had a good night’s sleep in months, and I was exhausted. I spent the morning with a staff person getting all the details and having a tour of the facility. The next week, Sky and I returned for him to spend the day and see what he thought. He went to several activities, and we had lunch together in the dining room. So far, so good.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Jane: Going, Going….

“I don’t know how to get to the Co-op.”

Sky was home after about ten minutes instead of the usual 45 minutes that it takes to walk to the Co-op, grocery shop, and walk home. He was headed out to buy supplies for our recently inaugurated “Burger Night” when we have dinner with Sayer and Emma and other friends who come by. We buy the food, and Sayer does the cooking. It’s always yummy, and something to look forward to. But, no more shopping for Sky.