Hello, my name is Alyson and I live with my long-suffering husband Paul.
I am glad that you have found our Mobility Help site; you too must be going through dreaded age-related issues. I would like to give you a little of my background to explain the reasons why I feel that I am experienced enough to be offering help and guidance.
When my mum hit her mid 70’s, all of the family members noticed a change in her. She slowly seemed to be getting more forgetful and confused.
Silly little things to begin with, things that we blamed on the passing of the years, after all, we all get muddled from time to time don’t we?
Initially we would find it funny and her grandsons would all tease her, especially when they found she had bought two identical copies of her beloved Daily Express (and completed the cryptic crossword in both) or they found her purse in the fridge.
Things got progressively worse, family worked rotas to try to give her company for as much time as possible but even that wasn’t enough.
The final straw came when her neighbour called to say she was wandering in the street, confused.
Long story cut short, mum got a formal Alzheimer’s diagnosis, I left my job and moved her into our little 3-bed semi with us.
2 became 3
For almost 4 years, I cared and nursed my mum. There were very many fun times with happy memories, they usually outweighed the frustrating, sad, and heart-wrenching times.
Mum had heart issues too and COPD, the awful lung disease caused by her smoking for 40 years. She had stopped for around 18 years and yet there were traces still in her lungs; let that be a warning to you!
She needed oxygen 24 hours a day, which was fun, trying to encourage her to keep a nasal tube in through the night!
The Alzheimer’s changed her with each passing day, but that loving, confident and very intelligent woman would surprise us and appear occasionally.
We all felt loved and she knew that she was loved right back.
You will have noticed that I talk of mum in the past tense; we so sadly lost her quite recently. A bout of pneumonia took her from us. Everyone that she loved was with her and she was peaceful.
Now that I have time on my hands, I have been reflecting and realising that all of my knowledge and, more importantly, experience, can be passed on to others.
Friends always come to me with issues with their parents or grandparents, “Al will know” they say.
So here we are, a blog about mobility issues with the elderly. Well that is how it began, but it can grow into so much more.
I have been that frustrated and lonely carer. I have dealt with incontinence and personal hygiene issues. I have strapped an oxygen tank to a wheelchair just to go for a walk around the block, desperately needing to escape this house. I have fought with Doctor’s receptionists to get home visits and social services to try to get better equipment.
I have nursed back to health following a hip replacement operation, sat through the night on an uncomfortable chair just to offer company and done a myriad of other things.
We have also laughed, laughed so much at funny things that she said or did, even the bad times were good.
I genuinely feel that all of my experiences can help others in my situation or a similar one.
Please feel free to drop me a message, I will reply as soon as I can. No one should have to suffer in silence or struggle alone.
Take a good look around the site; see if you can glean any tips from it. If you can’t, please leave me a message about anything that you would like me to cover. I would love that.
If you have managed to stick with me for this long, I am grateful, thank you.
Have you a lovely day and stay smiling.
One more thing, my darling father-in-law is 80 and as sharp as a tack, funny and bright. However, he too is struggling to get around as he used to, so you can expect more articles about mobility aids and issues, and how to get a stubborn parent to move from a first floor flat!