When I visited my parents in the nursing home this week, I was sad to learn that one of long-standing residents at the home had died a few day’s earlier. Her relatives had arrived to collect her possessions and I felt the pain of their loss. That was, until I heard the full story.
Norma, at 95 years old, had lived in the home for many years. I know that the staff and other residents, were very fond of her but I never actually saw her with a visitor. She was a gentle soul who rarely demanded attention so it was always a pleasure to stop for a chat. Norma would whisper her thanks and reward you with a smile.
I learnt the other day that Norma’s relatives had rarely, if ever visited her during her time in the home. She was so neglected by her nieces and nephews that the nursing home had to take her under their wing and provide all of her personal requirements. I used to always admire how well-turned out Norma looked and it now transpires that her clothes were provided by the home. When a resident dies, their relatives often choose to donate the best clothes of their loved one to the home. The staff keep a store of these clothes for use as spares when needed by some of the residents. Norma was beautifully kitted out from this source and the home supplied all her other needs, including her favourite chocolate treats.
I was horrified to hear that her relatives had arrived this week to collect the contents of Norma’s wardrobe and locker. Few, if any of her possessions were supplied by the family but they were determined to take them. It must have been sickening for the staff to watch this happening having lovingly cared for Norma for all those years. No guessing then what the relatives will want to get their hands on next!