Oh, Sarah!

If you have been following along, you know that my 89 year old  mother, Sarah, lives in a nursing home called Rosewood. She has been there 3 years after having a series of little strokes.  She now has dementia that (I swear) comes and goes. Sarah has not gone gently into that good night by any means! Although she has settled down and settled in to her new home, I still get the occasional phone call from the staff at Rosewood. They always start the call saying, “Ms. Sarah is alright, but…..”  A couple of weeks ago, I got a very odd call. Tracy, her nurse said, “Ms. Sarah is alright, but today she was playing bingo, (?) she won (?) and as a prize, she got a bottle of body wash. (?)  Before we were able to get to her, she had unscrewed the cap and drank half the bottle of body wash! The doctor was called and except for coughing some and her eyes watering, she’s okay.”  I had several questions – which I posed to her main caregiver, Sheila.  How does a woman who supposedly has dementia Play, never mind, Win, at Bingo? Sheila’s answer was that of course, none of the residents really play the game and that they take turns letting every one win. Okay, got that. But why would you give an 89 year old (who does not bathe herself)  a bottle of body wash as a prize? At that age, if you can’t eat it, drink it, or use it to keep warm, what good is it?  Sheila explained that a lot of things are donated to the residents. When the staff gives out “prizes”, they don’t always have a lot to choose from;  socks, gloves, powder, body wash, are a few of the things that are donated. We agreed that Sarah would not be given any liquids as a prize anymore. Note to self – take your lazy self to Walmart and buy decent “prizes” to donate to Rosewood.  Stay tuned.

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