And then there’s where it goes really wrong.
Sometimes, when I get a new carer and I do my induction phase and ask how long they have been a carer and who they have worked for. I get an early impression they are ‘Good People’. “Oh, you have done palliative care”
Then I work out she loves an environment she doesn’t take direction; she takes over, which is fine if the mum is dying and the husband is just trying to cope, the kids are losing their mum and their dad is not completely there either.
That’s not my home and they can’t shift gears to cope. Nobody comes into my home and takes over; I don’t need that. This particular carer, some ten years older than me. Very early I worked out, did not have friends her own age. So, she quickly got all the naughty girl talk sorted. Even when I do that talk with my carers, I try to keep it G rated and I worked out she was a complete narcissist.
This woman very obviously wanted to leave early on a Friday so she could go be with her 13-year-old daughter. She did helicopter parenting via phone while she was meant to be out shopping for my groceries, then doing my home care (cleaning). When I mentioned while out with her that I have a blog, she rather loudly enquired if I was going to write about her. I did not answer, already knowing if and when I did, she would not be bothered to read it, nor would it be complimentary.
The nail in the coffin was at some point and when it comes, it’s the final straw. The week I took Jemima to the vet the final time back in 2018 and I made the decision hastened by the fact that I had tickets on the Friday to see a band in my neighbourhood I have loved from my teens and while Jamima had been getting older, I’d been putting off the decision and she might have lived longer, I felt I couldn’t enjoy going out for the evening and enjoy myself if I was concerned about Jamima at home. It was a shitty, rough week, I cried before, knowing I was going to have to do it, I cried before I even booked, I cried. Let’s just say I cried. Shitiest week ever.
On the Friday, I had the carer from Hell, who tried to cheer me up by saying it would be a good night and I deserved it as a distraction. I’m picking up the thread of this post three weeks later, let’s see if I can do it justice. Anyway, so Friday carer arrived after a shitful week of saying goodbye to Jamima and then doing all the spring cleaning and cleaning up after Jamima’s last evening in our home. So, pretty quickly, I told said carer about Jamima going to God! (Apparently the term is crossing the rainbow bridge!) and that I had an exciting night planned to go see a band in my neighbourhood I’d loved from my teenage years.
I kept saying to my carer it was a little hot and sticky, towards the end of her shift so I might need her help after to shower so I could go out feeling fresh and clean. She was one of my standard PC (personal care) carers so it’s not like it was a huge imposition. It is not like she hadn’t seen me naked before.
We went shopping, we did all the standard hunter/gathering and towards the end of my shift. Always planning to have a shower, I made notes to do so. This carer often became very distracted around 4pm, which is about the time her kids get out of school. That’s when she’d be checking her phone all the time and the helicopter would lift off. She had a 13yr old and her behaviour altered around her noticeably. Offering to water plants then ignoring me and going ahead and doing it anyway and ignoring me asking her to stop. My indoor plants are a very careful balance of how much/how often. So, I think she just wanted me to dismiss her early so she would still get paid.
A friend dropped in to commiserate with me over Jamima. She had been a carer through the council and had loved Jamima from the first time she met her, threatening one day she would leave here with a big bulge (of Jamima) in her pants pocket. I told her if she could get her in there, she was welcome. She also had a cat the same age as Jamima so was grieving her cat that would one day soon cross the rainbow bridge also.
While I had a visit from Mrs T, I closed the door to the lounge so I could have a moment of peace from the carer who was getting paid to be there. She did not like being left out. She pushed open the door separating us to join the conversation.
“I know how you feel!”
Then she told us how she once had to take the tube from her son’s throat surgery years earlier. Now, we all know it’s not a mother’s job to take a tube from their child’s throat after they have had an anaesthetic or surgery, right? If you are unsure? The answer is no. It’s the doctors or nurses’ job, because your kids will hate you for doing it, the doctors and nurses get paid for the privilege. Your mum has the soothing and parenting jobs/roles you love them for. You have a Boo-Boo? Mum kisses it to make it all better. FFS!
Anyway, not digressing at all. Mrs T departed and I was sad and the night was young. So, I made a move to have a shower, the carer on shift had not been at all interested in assisting me when I finally headed to the bathroom, she decided to tell me she was reluctant to assist me. She decided to be very passive aggressive obviously and inform me if I’d wanted to change some of the shift, I should have informed the office, which by this stage it was Friday after 5pm, so it was closed.
What a stress I did not need, she helped me, but it was very obvious by her behaviour it was imposition on her that she complete her shift and help my get ready. She left, I made coffee, got ready and my friend came when it was closer to the time the venue was to open, we left to go see the band.
It was early. Daylight savings so it was still daylight, the venue was the Thornbury Theatre and I was going to see MIdge Ure, whom you may or may not know from the 80’s synth pop band Ultravoxx. If you are into something a bit less beaty (and electronic) are cruise and good to sing along to. Try this:
It was great, I bought the CD.
After the gig we walked home again. My friend walking ahead of me to cut through all the spider webs spread across the paths doing her best 1980’s goth arm waving. It was still light out and the streets were quiet. Got home. My friend left and I cried. I missed Jamima.
So, this is what you do to solve having a fucking shitty carer. Monday, I rang the agency and asked to put a block on her. I was asked why? So, I told her, I had a decent rapport with my rostering woman, as I always make sure to do. She was surprised, to be honest she deserved an incident report, but I was just happy to not have her again.
Unfortunately, I’d left a CD in her car, offering to loan it to her so she could listen to something a bit different. It was the BEST DEPECHE MODE CD EVER, Ii’s circa ‘88! (called Violator).
I didn’t buy my CD copy until about ‘92 but it was an old favourite. I have all DM CD’s but by far this is the standout best album. I tried to get back my CD but she didn’t respond to my texts and when I escalated it to management, they told me if I’d offered it to her as a friend it was my loss. So, soon I changed all my services from them to my current two providers, with who I’ve barely had an issue.
Over three years have passed and I recently was in a box of CD singles and came across said missing CD. Would never have looked for it there, the carer had bought it in and snuck it in a box. She must have not intended to return. Stupid Cow! No, she deserves worse.