Couples Stay Together in Aged Care

Wendy and Jim’s Story ~

Wendy and Jim have been happily married for 62 years.

Wendy was Jim’s primary caregiver when Parkinson’s Disease impacted his ability to manage everyday life.

They were thrown a curveball last year when Wendy was diagnosed with breast cancer which meant she was no longer able to care for Jim.  She also started suffering with arthritis in her right hand which affected her dexterity.

Wendy and Jim’s children recognized the need for assistance and organized for them to move into the Michael Lee Centre together in January.

“We were so lucky, our children took care of all the details, so we didn’t have to worry”, Wendy said.

Jim moved in the day before Wendy.  When she arrived, she asked if she could have her bed adjoining Jim’s in his room.

The rooms are spacious enough to fit two beds comfortably side by side.  They decided to use Wendy’s room as a separate living area.

“There’s plenty of storage and the extra bathroom comes in handy when Jim’s showering in the mornings”, Wendy explained.

They’re very happy with life at the Michael Lee Centre and particularly enjoy the leafy view out of their windows.

“We’re really happy with the way we’ve been serviced”.

Stan and Edna’s Story ~

Stan and Edna lived in a retirement village for a number of years, prior to entering the Michael Lee Centre this year.

Edna was Stan’s primary caregiver after he lost mobility due to a viral infection in his ankle.

Life changed when Edna ventured out to the shops one day and became terribly confused and lost.

A kind soul gave her a lift home to the village, but she was dropped at the main entrance which confused her even more.

It was a very hot day and as she wandered around looking for their unit, she spotted a gazebo.  Looking for a reprieve from the heat, she made her way towards the shade when she tripped over. It was a nasty fall which required an ambulance and a trip to the hospital.  It was after this that she was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s Disease.

It became apparent they would need assistance, as Edna would no longer be able to care for Stan.

“The Michael Lee Centre had just opened nearby so we went over to have a look. We couldn’t believe how beautiful it was, we felt very lucky to get in”, said Edna.

Rather than sharing a room, they prefer separate rooms as according to Edna, Stan snores!

They’re both very happy at the centre and believe it’s the best possible scenario for any couple who find themselves unable to manage day-to-day living at home.

Meath Care’s Tuart House in the Michael Lee Centre opens in November, which will be able to accommodate more couples requiring residential care.