A DOTING daughter has used her love of writing to thank staff at a Johnstone care home for looking after her mum.

Doreen Smith, 55, penned a poem dedicated to her mother, May Porter, and in honour of the dedicated team of workers at Cochrane Care Home.

The untitled tribute aims to illustrate how finding a suitable care home for a loved one can often be a challenging and emotional decision for families.

Doreen told The Gazette: “I was trying to put down in words the apprehension and guilt that a family feels when a loved one needs care and support that they can’t provide any more.

“The night my mum went to the care home, she said she hated me and was going to commit suicide.

“That’s how much she resented going.

“However, the staff were amazing and so reassuring, telling me that my mum was safe and I had nothing to worry about.”

May, a great-gran who celebrated her 95th birthday last week, is now settled at Cochrane Care Home, in Quarrelton Road, which offers nursing, dementia, palliative and respite care.

Doreen said her mum enjoys playing skittles and bingo with fellow residents and has made lots of new friends.

“Mum had to move to the care home four years ago due to her mobility being really bad and being in and out of hospital with respiratory problems,” she added.

“The other residents are always popping in to visit her due to her decreased mobility, so she’s probably got far more visitors now than when she was staying at home.”

Doreen’s poem speaks volumes about care workers

“You’re not putting me in a home,” my mother said.
“The thought of it fills me with dread.”
But my mother needs the care I cannot give.
The guilt I felt and much despair,
The day mum came to Cochrane Care.
There was no need to feel this way,
With support and kindness shown every day.
Caring staff who understand, offering reassurance that all is good.
Mum has settled well into her new home.
With lots of new friends,
She is never alone.
Tea parties and activities, there is lots to do,
And I get to join in too.

Doreen also hopes her poem will provide reassurance to others who face the difficult decision to put a loved one in a care home.

She said: “I imagine there are many families out there who have the same feelings my own family had but we now know that the right decision was made.”

Doreen was so impressed by the quality of life enjoyed by residents at the care home that, in 2019, she joined the team as an activities co-ordinator.

This not only allowed her to help keep residents entertained, it also meant she was still able to see her mum regularly throughout the Covid pandemic.

She added: “I began to volunteer there as the bingo caller and, when a part-time position came up, I decided it would be a new challenge for me after 33 years of pharmacy work.

“It’s really great when you start to fulfil an older person’s day and seeing them smile is so rewarding.

“Also, it’s good for families to know there are caring people out there, looking out for their loved ones.

“As a family, you are putting all of your faith into care home staff to help your mum or dad or sister or brother, so it’s a very important job.”