Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Hospice at home

I bought a small pot of primrose late last year to put on the table on the sunroof deck.  They have grown and bloomed little by little in the shivering cold. 

By the way, how would you like to live your days at the very final stage of life?  My siblings and I have wanted to let our frail mother live her final days, as she has wished, at peace and with dignity without depending too much on medical examinations and treatments , and finally we could meet a doctor and her stuffs to make our dream come true.
Five petals are like open palm welcoming you.
Home hospice recipients are not limited to sufferers of terminal cancer and HIV like hospice-care at the hospitals.  Our doctor runs a clinic and offers home-hospice: the team centered around the female doctor is on call 24 hours a day, aside from regular, scheduled home visits. They offer health check, medical care including palliative care, aromatherapy, spiritual counselling and so on, depending on the patient's condition.  
(Sekimoto Clinic, Nada-ward, Kobe City)
Sparkling laughter in the sunshine

My mother was tense before meeting them, but by their tender and affectionate words and smiles and confident professional touch, she seems to have felt reassured.  Not only my mother but also we children felt relieved to the dependable and reliable supporters. How fortunate we are!  I think the number of the elderly who prefer to be cared for in their own homes with all that is familiar about them and have the same fortune with my mother would be very small.  
On her 93rd birthday, November, 2013.
My sister-in-law dyed her hair.
She suddenly went downward after that.
Elder-care at home or nursing home, it would vary from home to home.  In this super aged-country, elder people are taking care of more elderly people, and at home the main care givers are daughters or daughters-in-law. As to the male member of my family, my brother, he has taken leadership. At night, he sleeps in her room, which would work as a mental palliative care as fear intensifies at night if the patient is alone. I smile to imagine their talks before going to sleep, no matter how trivial. 

Of course it's not easy to care for the old ailing mother with only family members as things happen one after another as if tested not only to mother but also to us children and our family.  We would depend on home helpers through Japan's Long-term Care Insurance System.

Buds,  bundle of energy

A child of Wind, another bundle of energy, will enter 3-year-old class of the kindergarten in April.
Wonder of living is so moving.  I've been learning about something important about the meaning of life from both the frail and weakening mother and the constantly growing little grandchildren.  

Primrose is one of my mother's favorites, and mine, too.  To me, it looks like a family consisting of babies, youths, the middle-aged, the elderly, and the withering ones, who enjoy sunshine and bare the chilly wind together.

Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to read, dear Friends.
I'll catch up visiting your blog, though very slowly under the circumstances.



  1. Dear Yoko - The families love and care you all share for your elderly mother is very moving and humbling. If only this was available to all old people. Your perceptive primrose analogy is one I shall remember.

  2. Your pretty pot of pink flowers contains all the stages of life within it and is the perfect analogy. Since I have known people to be cut off from life as buds it is very reassuring to see people live on to be splendidly old and loved by their families and other caregivers. That is as it should be. I wish you and your family many treasured moments in the days ahead.

  3. Dear Yoko, The photos and words you share touch my heart. The portraits of your smiling, elderly mother, laughing granddaughter, and lovely pink primrose - all a part of the ongoing stream of life. I worked as a Hospice patient volunteer many years ago when I was in my 40's. I learned so much from the patients and their families about dignity and closeness of family - how meaningful it is as life ebbs. Hugs to you as you and your siblings help your mother on this final journey. I hope I'm so lucky when my time comes.

  4. Här hos oss kan man också få vårdas till livets slut i hemmet med besök av vårdpersonal och att ha anhöriga hemma betyder mycket för den sjuke.
    Vi har nu en härlig vår här, som du kan se av mina bilder. Hösten och vintern har inte varit som vanligt här så våren är 1 månad tidigare an vanligt men det kan bli bakslag med snö förstås.
    Önskar dig en fin och lugn vår jag har dig med i mina tankar.
    Kram Meta

  5. Lovely primrose! My thoughts are with you and your family. It is so hard to watch your parents grow old and know that someday you will lose them. I am so glad your Mother can enjoy her remaining time with such a warm, loving family around her. Now, I am off to scroll through your blog and see pictures of your daughter's baby. I am so sorry I have not visited your blog in a while, but I am taking care of my daughter's baby everyday while she finishes her Physical Therapy degree. I love doing it, but I get nothing else done during the day and am dead tired when she leaves. My daughter will be finished in May, and hopefully I can catch up on a few things. Take care, my friend. Mickie :)

  6. Dear Yoko,
    I just read your today's post and your words full of sensitivity and dignity touched me deeply.
    I'm sure it's the dream of everybody at the end of his or her life to live and die peacefully within the family circle.
    I'm glad you and your family found the right support to fulfill your mother's dream. Without professional help by medics you normally can't do the job.
    Thanks for giving insight to this delicate issue that comes up to each of us with eldery parents.
    Well done, Yoko!
    Regards from Germany, Uwe.

  7. Dear Yoko, what your family is doing now is invaluable and most rewarding to all of you. Your little cutie has her grandma's eyes, I guess your mum recognizes herself in that what you called Wind child? Let these days be restful, God bless you all! Warm regards,

  8. Maravillosas fotografías de la casi eminente llegada de la primavera.

  9. i am glad you have found good care for your mother. what a blessing for her. the US is facing much of this same situation. i do not believe we'll be very well prepared for our aging society.

  10. I remember long ago when you talked about needing to look into some care for your mother. I didn't know that she was now sick. I am sorry. But I am very glad to know that you have found good hospice help. That is so very important. It is good to know your family is pulling together and working together to help your mother. I know how hard that is. Your mother is a blessed woman to have all your help and to be able to live and die with dignity. Big hugs as you continue in this journey. xox

  11. To cudownie, że znalazłaś sposób żeby Twoja Mama była z Wami i miała opiekę medyczną. To dla niej z pewnością wiele znaczy i jest szczęśliwa. Pierwiosnki dodały wrażliwości Twojemu postowi. Pozdrawiam.
    It's wonderful that you found a way to your mother was with you and had medical care. It's for her certainly means a lot and is happy. Primroses added sensitivity of your fasting. Yours.

  12. Dear Yoko,
    That was a beautiful, sadly beautiful text followed by beautiful captures... The primrose has special meanings to you and your Mother...
    May the joy of Spring give you confort and hope.
    Time is indeed a tricky thing...

  13. Yokoさん こんにちは。
    私達家族もそうありたいと願います。 お母様の笑顔が心に焼き付きました。 とても素敵な方ですね。

  14. What a beautiful post mixing flowers and text about elders...Beautiful !!!
    Have a nice day !

  15. Considering my own experiences with an elderly mother and with Lois Anne's cancer, I appreciated this post very much. We moved my mother from California to Florida (at her request) and she lived in an assisted care facility before she died of leukemia. She suffered from some memory loss but received wonderful care in her last years. Lois Anne is, we believe, free of cancer and we are grateful for that. She'll have additional scans the end of this month, but we feel they will show no further evidence of the disease!

    Your mother has been blessed with the loving care of her family. She is a beautiful woman and must be very proud of her children! The hospice system you describe is also a blessing.

    Thank you for these photographs of such beautiful flowers. They cannot help but lift one's spirits!

    Our best wishes for peace and joy!

  16. Thank you for sharing this Yoko. It's wonderful that your mother's wishes can be carried out and that she will remain at home as long as possible. The primroses are beautiful,everything is connected and nature can teach us so much.

    Best wishes,

  17. I admire you for taking care of her at home.

    My mother was in a so-called "frail care centre", but family members visited her almost daily. I couldn't, of course, since I was 14 000 km away in Japan, but I Skyped regularly.

    All the best to all of you!

  18. よーこさん、誕生日おめでとう!今はお母様のお世話で大変だと思いますが、誕生日は自分も周りの愛情深い人たちに囲まれていることが認識できるいい機会ですよね。

  19. お母様美しい方ですね。心地よい環境で過ごされるのが一番です。義母も極力入院などは嫌がりました。主人の兄弟が皆東京なので同居の私はただ無我夢中な介護の日々だったのが思い出されます。今となっては悔いはないし義母にとってもあれで良かったのかなと思いますが。

  20. 優しそうな女性の先生がいらっしゃって、よかったですね。又弟さんも優しい親孝行な方ですね。愛情深いご家族にかこまれて、お母様も、お幸せです。体に気をつけて、お世話してさしあげて下さい。

  21. oh Yoko...your mother is so how old..mine is 85...yes this is all our husband has a mother with Alzheimers..thank goodness there are still peopel to depend on..

  22. お母様、綺麗な方ですね!紫がよくお似合い。よかったです。すばらしい女医さんにめぐり合われて。最近はそうしたターミナルケアをしっかりできるお医者さんは希少だと、きいています。ご家族の方の愛情につつまれて、お母様お幸せです。お忙しいことと存じますが、お母様のケアをみなさんでおできになられることがまたとても幸せですね。

  23. ✿⊱°•
    Seu post é muito emocionante.
    O amor que vocês sentem pela sua mãezinha é uma benção para sua família.

    °º。♪♫Bom fim de semana!°。♪♬
    Beijinhos✿♫° ·.

  24. You are fortunate to have that kind of care available for your mother. And she is fortunate to be cared for in familiar surroundings. I have heard too many stories from friends trying to find appropriate help for their parents. Mine have been gone for more than ten years. Take serenity from your flowers, joy from your grandchildren and contentment from your mother, knowing that you are helping her have the end of life she would want.

  25. こんばんは。幸せなお母様ですね。 マザーテレサの言葉を引用することも無いですが、孤独がほど辛い事は無いと思います。

  26. Yoko-san, It was so nice of you to have stopped by my post today. I just read your post and I had no idea what your family was going through. What a kind decision you and your family made to make your mother live with dignity for the remainder of her life. I hope that every elderly in Japan has such wonderful family as you.

  27. Αγαπημένη μου φίλη Yoko, πόσο λυπάμαι για την μητέρα σου...Και είναι τόσο όμορφη και χαμογελαστή!
    Χαίρομαι που έχει μια τόσο σωστή περίθαλψη. Είναι παρηγοριά για σας και για εκείνη.
    Εύχομαι μέσα από την καρδιά μου, να μην πονάει και να είναι γαλήνια.
    Εύχομαι σε σένα κουράγιο.
    Πάρε όλη την δύναμη από τα θαυμάσια παιδιά και εγγόνια σου! Μεγάλωσε τόσο, είναι πανέμορφη!!!!
    Σου στέλνω μια μεγάλη αγκαλιά και πολλά φιλιά!


  28. Hello, stardust - san.

    Lovely flowers and grandson.
    His growth and his smile is the hope of the adult generation.

    When my relatives to institutionalization took a long time to the procedure.

    Thank you for the impressive scene.
    Take care of yourself.


  29. Yoko, this was a very heartwarming read. How beautifully you weave the stages of life with your personal narration and nature. There is a lot to take back from your post, ponder and learn something about life. I highly appreciate you and your family's efforts to fulfill your mother's wishes in the way she liked otherwise these days, even in India, proper respect to the elderly and old age care is hard to come by. She looks so beautiful in the picture you shared, I pray to God to keep her blessed always, I hope she gets well very soon.

    Sorry for being late here, been a bit busy for the past few days for blog-hops. Take care, Yoko.

  30. This must be a difficult time. The primroses are a reminder of the vibrancy of life. Gorgeous shots.

  31. Well written post and pictures Yoko...


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