The day-to-day work of family members caring for older relatives is already onerous and in constant demand. The situation is even more difficult when a loved one has a progressive disease with devastating effects. In the midst of hardship, however, Fernanda Franck, 36, decided to document and share the lighthearted and affectionate moments she experiences with her grandmother, Amida Guesser Besen, every day. The older woman, 91, has Alzheimer’s, a degenerative disease common in older adults that causes progressive and persistent memory loss.
“I say a lot that I love taking care of my grandmother because I really do. It’s a story of love and devotion,” says Fernanda, who bets on a mix of love and humor on her Instagram profile , in which she shows snippets of her daily life with her grandmother.
On Instagram, the young woman also shared the day-to-day life of an aged care worker who needs attention. “Carers also need a lot of attention. I think sometimes people end up not seeing that side.”
Fernanda said her grandmother was born in Biguazu (South Carolina), where she still lives, and has 12 children. “She was always very hardworking and very fighter. All the kids said she worked for 10 years because she was really a fighter,” she said.
Amida has taken care of her child’s growth and has remained very close to Fernanda’s mother, Maria Besen, 71. When Fernanda was 3, the pensioner moved but asked her daughter to go with her. The two then went to the house of Amida, who looked after Fernanda while Maria worked.
“In the past, my grandmother wasn’t sweet at all, it was her way, stronger. And I was always sensitive, I was always attached, crybaby and all,” she recalls.
Despite their different temperaments, their relationship has always been close. For example, his sexuality was never an issue for his grandmother, who treated her girlfriend like a “queen”.
“I have always had a good relationship with her. I don’t remember the fight, to be honest, she helped me out as much as she could, and sometimes she lent me a little money. It’s been a very strong bond since I was a kid. relation.”
The first care was during Fernanda’s adolescence, when her grandmother had a serious accident and underwent surgery. “I’d go to the hospital and take her arm and say ‘grandma, you’re going to live a long time, you’re going to be old, and I’ll take care of you’. It’s weird, I always say that with a lot, a lot, a lot of strength words,” he reported.
A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s takes a while to come. Fernanda recalls that the first signs came when her grandmother started making up the story of a daughter she lived with, accusing her of stealing money.
The conflict is not limited to one daughter. The blame ultimately fell on Maria, as the other sister also couldn’t handle the difficulties of dealing with an elderly person with Alzheimer’s.
“My mum didn’t understand anything and the wrong answers made her very aggressive and annoyed. My grandmother always wanted to leave, she was always dressed up, she didn’t like bathing… Anyway, it’s for everyone It was a very difficult time.”
Fernanda, who had moved for personal reasons, returned to live with her mother in 2017. Upon arrival, she faced a situation she used to only be in contact with on weekends. She then started researching the disease and found other sources on the internet that shared the pain and joy of caring for the elderly.
Inspired, she created an Instagram profile and started recording videos, while increasingly dedicating herself to caring for her grandmother who enjoyed the recordings. “Grandma likes to look at herself. She looked at each other and couldn’t recognize herself, so she laughed a lot, it was really cool, and it’s really cool to this day.”
At the same time, the young woman said she began to treat the disease differently, using “little white lies” to avoid conflicts that her grandmother had had with other family members in the past. When Amida was searching for her husband, who died 14 years ago, Fernanda replied that he was working, not arguing.
“It was a lot of learning. Grandma had some confusion in her head, but we already knew how to deal with this situation,” he said. “It’s all based on love, love, patience, dedication. Bathing is quiet, eating is quiet, hygiene is quiet, but it’s because we’ve learned to deal with it.”
“I was like this for almost four years without any income, but in the end it all worked out. Today we made some publications [anúncios no Instagram] Who gave a little money,” he concluded.
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