Learning to say no is an important skill but it is so difficult. As most people have a job, a lot of people want to visit at the weekend. I am not good at saying no as I do not want to deny anyone their time with JD. And, I like visitors as well.
However, this weekend I got it all completely wrong and nearly had a nervous breakdown.
First of all, on Saturday morning, my sister and her husband came to stay. They had only just arrived when the carers showed up. So then there were 4 extra people in my house. I was keen to get JD in to the chair in the living room so I suggested we tried to use the hoist to put JD in her chair so she could sit and hold court for the day.
Now this hoist is quite a beast and the carers were not sure how to put JD into the sling properly. They started to put JD in the very complicated looking thing. In the pictures, this always looks easy, with the patients smiling happily. In reality it was a nightmare! We could not get it right and when we hovered JD off the bed, it looked all wrong. JD looked in serious distress and I was panicking a bit. We decided to abort the attempt and try again another time. So all the man-handling was for no reason.
As we were doing this, a friend arrived for JD on a planned visit. So then there were 5 extra people in the house. Due to the whole hoist-disaster, I was stressed and very upset so very much flapping about.
The carers left and another friend arrived. So still 4 people in the flat.
Around 4, another 2 friends arrived, just after the previous 2 left. By now I had calmed down a bit so things were fine again.
On Sunday, we did manage to get JD in her chair in the living room but with friends arriving just as we were doing all the hoisting, it was a stressful start of the day again. It got worse, much worse.
After all friends and my sister had left, the carers and I had to put JD back in to bed. When we were lifting JD from the chair onto the bed, she started to slip out of the sling. She is quite heavy these days and having her fall out of the sling onto the floor would be a disaster. As she helplessly slipped further down, I panicked. Luckily the carer just said: I have her legs, you grab her shoulder and we’ll just lift her onto the bed. So we manhandled JD onto the bed. I swear I saw tears in her eyes. I too cried again. I promised JD she would never have to get into the hoist again.
I told the care agency I wanted a different sling. JD really likes to sit in the chair in the living room so I really want to make it work. It will make her feel more part of life, instead of spending the day in bed. But not when it confuses and scares JD, hanging in some uncomfortable contraption.
So combining all that stress and agony for JD, this was easily the most stressful weekend in months. And that includes the weekend when JD had her seizures!
The new sling was delivered this afternoon and looks a lot easier than the previous one. stay tuned for a picture of JD in her chair.