Saturday, 10 August 2013

A sons story thank you Peter

Last week I was a guest speaker at Dundee University and was contacted by Peter A son originally  from Dundee 

As son who's mum had dementia I want to thank  Peter for sharing his story and for kindly allowing me to share, I truly Believe that sharing out stories, experiences is the greatest way to being more understanding and help to others 

Thanks you peter for sharing 


My mum was diagnosed with dementia around 2006, although she started going down hill before that.... My dad was her carer at home which was difficult for him as he was house bound.. And in the end they had carers coming in twice a day as dad could not cope anymore..  I visited them twice a year every year with my daughter..... I will never forget the day she was admited to Ninewells Hospital in Dundee and I travelled up to see her from Guildford and we were chatting on the bed and after about half an hour she said to me "I am ever so sorry, your such a nice lad but who are you".. And that nearly broke my heart...  My daughter and I started holidaying 3 times a year after that to visit them both at home and eventually she was re-admitted to The Royal Victoria Hospital in Dundee where she stayed for a few months.. My dad was completely heart broken as he was unable to visit her and that was after 59 years of marriage.
I supported my dad as much as I could which was difficult living in Guildford but my daughter and I continued to travel up 3 times a year... In the end my mum had to be admitted to a Harestane Nursing Home, which was delayed for a month so that I could travel up and help in Summer 2008, A day which will live with me forever as my mum just sat in a seat and didn't open her eyes. My daughter who was 10 at the time sat next to her holding her hand saying Grandma, Grandma at which point I saw my mum squeeze her hand which just brought tears to my eyes... Next day I could not bring myself to go and see her as it was just too much for me and we travelled back to Guildford the next day... I was then hit with so much guilt about dumping mum into a home and deserting her that we decided to go back up in October... Managed to have some kind of conversation every day with my mum leading up to us returning and was like a countdown telling her every day how long till we saw her again until it was I am travelling up tomorrow mum and I am bringing Mia with me [my daughters name]... We arrived at the hotel and then did the 5 min walk to dads house, phoned the home and said to tell mum Mia and I would be up tomorrow.... Went back to the Hotel and ordered our food and just as our food was put in front of us my phone went only for my dad to tell me she had passed away.... It is almost as if mum waited for us to arrive so that dad would not be on his own and then she just let go and I feel so bad about leaving her in a home and never getting to see her again and say sorry....
  All through the years of visiting my bro and sister who both lived down this way never bothered to visit them and there was big fallings out over this and I hated them both for it.... Eventually in 2009 my dad was put into Orchar Nursing home in Broughty Ferry where he stayed and while in  a short stay in hospital Sept 2010 my sister passed away and I made my brother go up and tell him face to face about it,, and I think that just finished him off as he passed away October 2010... That was a particular bad time as Mia and I travelled to Dundee to stay for a week, my Dad's funeral was on the Friday and my Sisters funeral was in Kent on the Tuesday....
I get so frustrated when I see stuff in the news and on TV programmes about people with Dementia and I think what you are doing is outstanding trying to raise awareness to what I would cal a disease and there is not enough being done about it..
 Mia and I still holiday'd for the last 2 years visiting where we scattered their ashes and if you know Broughty Ferry they are in the pool in the rock gardens just by Barnhill a place where my mum used to walk on Summer evenings when she was well and a place I used to play when I was a child and as desperate as I am to go this year my finances will just not allow it and I am so home sick at the moment as Mia and I are there at this time of the month every year in fact we would be due to travel tomorrow...
  We always stay at the Woodlands Hotel which me, mum and dad were regulars at and I even worked there for 6 years before moving down to Guildford... Still know some of the staff which was very helpful at the Funeral Teas as the were so understanding as a lot of them knew my parents... I even had one of them contact me through FB asking if I was coming up this year as the rooms were being booked up.... It was like a second home for Mia and myself.... I work for a school and as it is the summer holidays at the moment I am trying to get as much agency work so that I can hopefully get enough money together and go up in the October holiday's........  
Thanks for listening
Regards Peter

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