Journey With a Lighter Heart

She was better than I dared hope, and her surprised reaction, her face breaking into a delighted smile when she saw me, was worth millions. I had brought three bottles of her favourite fruit juice, M&S’ Kale and Mango. It looks like water from a particularly scummy pond, but tastes like heaven.


By the time I left, shortly after four this afternoon, there was very little of the 750ml left in the first bottle. If you can drink a bottle a day I said, and she refrained from telling me I was being bossy, it should keep you hydrated and ward off UTIs. They are the things we have to watch out for, they’ll make you fall. And you feel dreadful, she added, showing me that what I told her was nothing she didn’t know already.


It was extremely difficult to broach the carer conversation. But about an hour before I left I managed it. I had been speaking to one of the community nursing team, repeating my fear that Aunt will develop pressure sores on her heels. She raised the subject of carers. I explained how Aunt and I had both been less than impressed by some of Mother’s carers. I gave examples. The nurse tutted and said she saw what I meant.

Anyway, I don’t need carers, said Aunt. Back to square one. Except this time I talked about her having carers to support Linda, carers who Linda could supervise in the first instance, so that they know where the boundaries are. Linda spends much of the time when she is not with Aunt worrying about her. It’s stressful to put it mildly. I reminded Aunt how she had spent all her time worrying about Mother when she was her primary carer, the toll it had taken on her. Aunt nodded and looked thoughtful. By having carers she could ease some of those anxieties for Linda.


We’ll see.


And I found the essential oil diffuser, so we spent the afternoon in a scented cloud of lavender. Another treasure was the electronic photo frame I gave her years ago. I had assumed it was broken, but when I plugged it in we saw pictures of Uncle Bill’s grandchildren, Aunt’s great nieces and nephews. A bit more rummaging and I found a whole collection of USBs Uncle Bill had sent her. I may have to put some of MasterB on a USB as well. She has lots of him on her tablet, but I shouldn’t like him to be eclipsed. Last night I missed the weight of him on my feet, which is where he likes to sleep, but he’ll have been happier at home, and anyway pets aren’t allowed on the coach.


It was definitely a journey worth making, and now i have discovered the joys of coach travel, it’s an option I may well choose again, though I am wondering if I could get the train to Cambridge and then pick up the coach from there. I might even be able to read my book instead of carrying it back and forth with only a few pages read before bed.


12 thoughts on “Journey With a Lighter Heart

  1. Excellent news. A very clever way of convincing her about the carers – that it will take pressure off Linda. That is the way forward, I’m sure. And it will relieve Linda (if they are half decent). Reassuring too that the nurse seemed to know what you meant, and disapprove when you mentioned the un-carers your mother had.
    So glad the trip went well, Isobel. Hope you slept ok in your re-organised room, too.
    Master B will be as overjoyed to see you as Aunt was!

    • If they aren’t half decent – and we aren’t yet at the point where she will accept them – we are stuffed.

      I spoke again to the specialist nurse who was pleased to hear aunt was so well, and more than slightly stunned that I had been sent out to buy wafer thin ham. I get the impression that although she is a headache because she won’t accept help and keeps shoving them away, they are all rather proud of her and her strong survival instinct. The SN said she was amazed Aunt had lasted so long. My next post, with pictures, will be She Ain’t Dead Yet.
      The taxi can stay at the rank!

  2. Yes, a lighter heart. Loved how you worked out/worked in the carer issue. Thinking about you and hope you are home with MasterB. I can see her smile… bet she was over the moon to see you.

    • She was flatteringly pleased. As was MasterB when I got home.
      Pray to all the gods at once about the carer issue. It’s going to be a delicate procedure…

      I may post a picture of her tonight.

      • I will pray to all the gods. CH and I are getting ready to go out to eat for our anniversary. I will look forward to seeing a picture when we return home if you decide to post a picture. xx

  3. Well done, Isobel, for handling the carer situation with subtlety and tact. Hope Aunt thinks seriously about it and takes some action. So nice that you had a lovely, positive visit and enjoyed the coach trip.

    • Well it had the advantage of being true. Aunt was so stressed the last months when Mother was living in her bungalow.Every time she heard an ambulance she thought it was because Mother had set off with her walking frame and been knocked down.

      Linda is now exhibiting physical symptoms of stress, so we need to do something. But by tomorrow, Aunt may have forgotten or completely changed her mind…

      I wish I hadn’t bothered to take a book. I took two, wrongly imagining that I would wile away the coach rides reading, but they were in darkness, so I posted blogs instead!

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