When I was in hospital, I longed to be in my comfortable two roomed flat, home for the last 18 years. It occupies the ground floor of a large town house, converted into six flats, where I live on my own/. I used to know all the other tenants, because they have been in residence nearly as long as I have. This could have changed .My windows look out over the Recreational grounds. a large green park marked out into rugby and football pitches.This park is very popular with families having picnics and barbecues. At this moment, there are people there disobeying the Governments lockdown rules. They are gathering in groups, which the police are continually chasing away. Having lived here for so long, I know most of the neighbours Yesterday, as my morning carer left, she found my next door neighbour pumping up a slow puncture in her back tyre. I must remember to thank him the next time he cleans my widows..Another neighbour, was watering my plants in the small garden. We have had a very long spell of dry sunny weather. The sort of weather to go to the beach, or take a picnic to the country. Unfortunately, since the advent of COVID 19 VIRUS, the whole of the British Isles has been in lockdown including me, because of my age and health problems. This means that I cannot leave my flat for12 weeks, only seeing the carers for company, plus any one delivering supplies.
My close friend and neighbour does my shopping. Every few days, she stands outside my large bay window, makes a telephone call to me and gives me all the local news. This works quite well, because I can see her as she talks, so I don’t feel quite so lonely, I had a delivery of food this morning. She brought me everything I needed plus some treats, two Portuguese custard tarts, and a large chocolate croissant for tomorrows breakfast. We also managed a few minutes of chat, quite difficult with face masks on.
Because of my age and disability, I am extremely lucky to have two carers who come to the flat to help me live on my own .One arrives at 9 oclock to help me wash and get dressed. She is always dressed in gloves, full mask and apron.The other one comes at 6 to check that I am O.K This is because I have had a fall. Both carers are dressed in fully protective gear. They work for the same company. who employ many trained carers I just have two out of a big group who look after many elderly people in the area. I look forward to seeing them and hearing about their families, most have children whose schools are closed. Many of them come from the local district, while others, originally come from Europe and even Asia. I am disturbed that the fatalities in this grade of carer is not counted in the Governments figures, These carers look after the patients most likely to catch the disease, Good news this after noon for all carers in Wales.They are to be given five hundred pounds each, as a bonus for coping with the virus. They certainly deserve it..
I have lived on my own for the last eighteen years, so I am used to my own company. I enjoy reading, watching T.V.,and having my friends around for a chat. I have a few very good friends who I am missing badly. Nowadays, my carers have become my friends, who check on my wellbeing because I had a fall when I was on my own..I will now describe what happened. It was all my own fault. It was 3 o clock in the morning and I had to go to the bathroom. I walk with a zimmer frame made of metal. It was dark, I was not properly awake, and my flat is overcrowded with furniture,. When I started walking, one of the frames legs got caught behind a chair. I did not notice it, so when I tried to move the frame, it was stuck and tripped me up, so that I fell on top of it. At first, I thought I could get out of the sticky situation. I wear a panic button around my neck, but I did not think that my situation merited an army of strong men to lift me up. However, the more I struggled, the more I got entangled with the metal legs of the frame, the more bruising my legs received.. I could not stay on the floor for the rest of the night, even though it was carpeted. Luckily, I had taken my phone with me, also my diary with all those long mobile numbers. I rang a friend who lives not too far away. It was only ten minutes before she arrived with her husband. My friend tried to pick me up but failed, as I was such a dead weight. Her husband had no such problem. He lifted me up and had me back in bed in seconds. I was bruised and a lot wiser, it was a lesson well learned. I am much more careful now.. I have to accept that I am really elderly, so have to plan all moves carefully if I want to continue living on my own. I certainly do not want to have to move to a care home, I was sent to a boarding school when I was five years old, where I was quite a little rebel. I don’t think that I have changed that much in all the years between .Living in a care home is the answer for some people who cannot for some reason look after themselves.I have one such friend who has never been so happy/.During lockdown, the care homes have fared very badly, having large numbers of deaths due to the frailty of the inmates, and the closeness that they live to each other.Once the virus gets into the home, it runs riot threw the occupants.This includes many carers who had not been able to get the protective clothing they needed. .I am so sorry that this happened, It would take a lot of courage to work in a care home at the present time. We must be very thankful that there are many wonderful people who do this every day.