More and more people these days are considering residential care as a very viable and attractive option to be living at home, alone in their later years. Thankfully the stuffy and often not so attractive services offered by the old time “old people’s homes” are now well and truly a thing of the past with modern day residential care offered in bright, attractive properties with friendly staff and an emphasis on social activities and in many cases living your life to the full.
I must admit to being one of those sceptical people but a few months ago I accompanied my uncle to a residential care home with a view of making this his new home I was not at all shocked by the friendliness of the staff, I would have expected that in any case but what really shocked me was the smiling, happy and laughing residents that seem to have a much fuller social life than I do with regular days out, weekly quiz nights and many joint activities in their very well equipped communal lounge that was as luxurious as any private household.
There are many residential care homes to choose from and as I we did with my uncle I would always recommend that you go along to get the feel of the place, maybe even go two or three times and then decide and if possible go to any of the social activities on offer.
I had for a while been looking at the quality residential care home services provided by Carebase and located across south-east England and East Anglia and offering a range of different care packages from residential, nursing and respite through to specialised dementia care services.
I won’t pretend that it is an easy decision to see your loved one going into a care home and I am sure that it is a very traumatic change to your loved one’s life. They will undoubtedly feel unsettled and most certainly out of place but looking back I can honestly say that not just for me but also for my uncle it was the best overall decision.
The reason that I know this was the best decision was that this year as with every year for the past 15 years we have always invited my uncle to Christmas dinner, we have driven over, picked him up and had a great day with him and other family members. However this year I called him about two weeks before Christmas and said we would be picking up about 11 AM and I must admit his reply shocked me and even upset me for a short period of time.
His reply was that if it was okay with us he would leave it this year and spend Christmas Day with his “friends” it was only then that I realised he was 100% happy and although he still loved us dearly he did not “need us” any longer.
Firstly I was sad but then realised that this is probably the best thing I could ever have wished for. We still see him on a regular basis but it’s now on his terms, and that’s exactly how it should be.