Mae’s Story

I am writing to you because I am filled with gratitude for the devoted assistance of Ionia Area Hospice who cared for my mom – and to you for supporting their work.

I hope after reading my mom’s story you will join me and make a gift today to Ionia Area Hospice & Stoneleigh Residence.

My mother Mae Dell Brown, was a nurse before she retired and had lived independently for many years. In her early 90’s she began showing more and more signs of dementia until finally, we knew it was time to change her living arrangements. My mom agreed.

And so in the fall of 2016, my sister and I moved my mother closer to us and she became a resident at a senior apartment complex. After a short adjustment period, she began to enjoy her time there. She made friends and loved going on excursions to restaurants and out for ice cream.

We had just a couple of years until her dementia was diagnosed as Alzheimer’s disease. My sister and I spent time with her every day but it was not long before we knew that mom needed more help. Her doctor suggested Ionia Area Hospice.

The medical care we received was more than I had ever hoped for. After the first few visits, my sister and I felt so comfortable with our nurse. We would leave notes in a notebook to communicate with each other and the Hospice nurse joined right in with our simple procedure. We knew the exact time of her visits and everything she had helped mom with. Since my sister and I both have full-time jobs, we enlisted our retired husbands to also become involved in mom’s care. All of us worked together as a team and the hospice nurses became part of the family.

The massage therapist was a favorite for mom, as she brought fragrant essential oils to use on her feet and hands. Mom was so relaxed and happy after these visits.

Late one night mom started having hallucinations and I didn’t know what to do. Nothing I tried would calm her down. I called her doctor and he called the hospice nurse. She was there immediately, within 10 minutes. She settled me and mom down, which was no small task! She stayed with us for hours until mom asked to go to bed. Both of us helped mom into her pajamas and tucked her in for the night.

Even after spending all this time with mom, the nurse sat with me in the hallway and we waited to make sure mom would go to sleep. We talked about everything that could happen with Alzheimer’s disease and what the future might look like for mom. That conversation with the nurse was so informative. I learned a lot that night.

Ionia Area Hospice was life-saving to me and my family. The care my mom and family received was more than any of us could have asked for. They covered every aspect of care. They were there before we asked. They were there for all of us and made the end days with mom more tolerable by carefully guiding our steps to make her more comfortable.

Thanks to you and Ionia Area Hospice, we were not alone on this journey.

Please join me and my family today and make a gift to Ionia Area Hospice & Stoneleigh Residence so they may continue to care for people like my sweet mom.

Sheila Robison