There was a female resident, A, who had been living with us since early 2011, and I can honestly say she is the first resident I had truly took to. She was down to earth and funny, and called a spade a spade. She was in fact an amazing woman to look after. I enjoyed going to work to go see her, and to talk to her.
She made me laugh as she had dubbed me a new name, despite knowing my actual name.
A: Michaela whens yourbreak?
Me:My names not Michaela A.
A: I know but you look like a Michaela so that's what I'm going to call you.
Me: Okay fair enough.
A: So whens your break?
Me: Why A do you want a fag?
Me: I don't know A you'll have to ask the senior.
A: Oi, When's it Michaela's break?
Senior: Now if she wants it.
A: Michaela take me for a fag please.
So off I used to trot to make us a cuppa and out for a fag, where we would often sit chatting about A's family and her past life and her pet dog.
It would seem she liked the men in her younger days, and in fact still did in her senior years. I recall one day when she had tried to grab one of the workmen's bottoms as I pushed her past in her wheelchair. On another occasion there had been work men on the roof and she was heckling to them to turn around as it was the front she had wanted to see.
I think its safe to say I loved this woman as if she was my own Grandma.I think it's also safe to say she quite liked me. She would complain to her family when I wasn't on shift. Or if had had a few days off she would ask if I had left.
In her latter weeks she would spend most of the days calling the various names she had come to call me, even when I wasn't on shift. She would refuse care's unless it was carried out by me.
It's the most horrible feeling walking out of a room to hear the family shout you back in because she needed urgent attention. Something had happened, and she was not breathing or responding. I did what I could until the ambulance had arrive. The family invited me to the hospital as she (in there words) Loved Me, and they felt I would like to see her, as they had been told she wouldn't live long. So I went and stayed with the family for 4-5 hours.
She lived a few days longer than expected. I visited her whilst in hospital and then when on shift the day after the manager came and told me that she had passed.
I cried. I cried as though I had lost my own Grandmother. I often walked into her empty room and looked around it.
A's funeral is the first I have ever attended in my time of working in care homes. I had to act professional as I had also been sent to represent the Home, but either way I was adamant on attending it. If I'm honest it was hard fighting back the tears as saying goodbye, and more so when my own Nanna's funeral song was played.
I can honestly say that this looking after this woman was a pleasure, and having her in my life, and meeting her even for a short amount of time was an honor.
I have had many memorable conversations, and memories with this lady. She will always stay with me for ever.
Read Emotional Wreck at work Part 1