- an ’emergency’ bag at the bottom of the stairs, filled with toiletries, a phone charger and extra layers
- multiple phone chargers (the bag, Herself’s house, the car, as well as the regular one here)
- an easy access list of key contacts- on paper and in the phone. Any change in arrangements required about 5 calls.
- reference numbers, National Insurance numbers, hospital numbers
- Power of Attorney documentation
- a copy of the ‘going into hospital’ sheet- information for staff on Herself’s condition. (She had PSP, a rare disease, not often seen by medics.)
- regular doses of diazepam
- childminder on standby
- always charged iPod and mini speaker
- bus timetable
- alternative travel arrangements for Spurs Fan to get to work
- shopping lists for Herself’s clothes, toiletries, presents she wanted to buy
- energy to browse, choose, wrap, return etc
I’m working on input to a nurse training event on rare diseases, and was struck by how much of this very practical stuff I had to be reminded to consider. As if, because I was miles away, the work I was doing for my mum most days somehow didn’t count. I’m aware that there are tasks I no longer do, but I was forgetting that these are tasks that need done by somebody when there’s illness in the family. I seemed to think (until reminded) that what I was doing couldn’t count as ‘caring’ when there were so many paid carers.
Illness plays with all our heads.
It even makes me think it’s time for some medical drama melodrama …
Too much? Ah well, it’s the chance you take round here!