Sally asks Jo, Kadie and Abbey further questions and they reflect among themselves the impact of caring.

I've I've got I've got a question for, um, for Joe, um, to start with. So now that you're, um, back to being your son's mum, is it Chris, did you say to Chris, Chris's mum? What? What impact has that had on your, um, on your life? I, um less stress. Um, I can get on with so much more. I mean, his his education is still under review, and, um, we'll be going to tribunal

Your sound is beginning to drift again. Sorry. Um, so the the education still needs sorting, which is sort of associated with social care, because it's the local authority that has to provide that, um, and I've got the time to really sort that out

Well, now, um, which, you know, it feels like you have to really choose which thing to sort out. Um, at any given moment, trying to do it all at once is really, really tiring. And so, just having had that support over the last year, um, where I haven't had to be the one worrying about what Chris is doing when he's not in my sight

Um, it just it just means that I can cope with so much more. And as I say, I'm I'm training, um, a new career at the moment, um, which gives me my life back. And it means that I can start thinking about going out to work, or I've always been self-employed, but I've only ever been able to work part time

So just as I'm reaching the stage where a lot of people are probably thinking about retirement, I'm thinking about going back, so Yeah, thanks. Thank you, Joe. And could I ask Katie? What does it it? Did you say it was your son? What does your son do during the day? So he only gets funding for his staffing

So we have to be very, very inventive. And so we try to find relationships between people who are have the same interests as him. So, um, this is obviously not including covid because he didn't do very good on the online stuff because he just doesn't

His learning disability doesn't allow him to really understand what's going on. So his staff facilitate an awful lot of stuff. Um, and he's part of certain groups, but, um, we facilitated relationship with he wanted to work in a record shop

So we found we found a guy who set up a vinyl shop in Cambridge and, um, has his retirement project. And he was happy for Mark to go in and price up the albums. Um, and that's just about to resume

Um, and also a gentleman who's got a joinery that he only works himself for commissioned, um, projects. And he's happy to have Mark go in and do woodwork projects of his own, um, and supervise. But he's got all the tools

Mark just provides all the materials. Um, and it's done on a, um, on a relation on the on the relationship that they phone up in the morning. If he's got some energy and this chap is free to have him in without any problems, then with you know that he hasn't got clients in or whatever, then he can go in, um, and then you know, and it might be weeks between the the sessions, but he's made some really good wood work projects, and and it certainly wouldn't be my cup of tea to go in there and see him on one of those big sore things in a bit of wood

Because I I'm a bit risk averse, but it happens and and and you know it all happens safely, and it can be a 10 minute session. Or you could actually turn up and be asleep in the car and just turn around and go home. Um, so those are the the things

There's some social groups now that he's part of, he's looking for a girlfriend. He wants a partnership for his. You know, he sees himself as a middle aged man who needs a companion

Um, that's that's really tough, that it's really tough. Um um, and just generally he sleeps 50% of his life, So, um, he's not able to participate a lot. So having and sports activities, he goes out and does sports

But that's basically that's basically that and, you know, before covid shopping and doing housework and just generally visiting people like us or something. So not it doesn't work. Um, never been

Well, I say he's never been able to. We ran a business for 15 years, so we were able to incorporate a small amount of work that we could put aside for him if he was able to come in without it being detrimental to the business. So he was able to do some, um, pre production work

And we used to pay him a little amount of money for when he came in. But again, you know, we find it really difficult to find him a place anywhere because people want production, they need If they're going to have someone in the building, they need some results. And they need to know someone's there at a precise time

He can't guarantee that. Sorry. It's all right

So, Abby, your brother, What does your brother do? Does he do anything to do with just do with social care? Does he access any day? So he goes to, um Can we name things or not? Yeah, yeah, yeah. Cool. So he goes to, um, Avenue East

Uh, three days a week. I think, um, which is an organisation. I think they're all over

But in Suffolk, um, that he does that with them. Sort of a three days a week, which he really likes. Um, he goes to a legion, lives hub, um, near him one day a week where he does like his life skills

They do like cooking and stuff like that, um, which helps him get ready for when he kind of gets his house. Um, And then one day a week, and he has a p a, um who They just go out and do stuff together. That's like that he wants to do so sometimes

Jack gets really, really tired, so sometimes he just wants to sit in front of the TV and just relax for a day. Um, or sometimes he wants to go to Felix and go across the beach. Um, and he does that, but he sees his p a more of his friend, um, than a than a p A

You know, we didn't interview her. They are friends. Um, and she so it's quite nice

It's like another family for him. She just hasn't for the day. And it's really nice like that

Um, and then at the weekends, um, I have him or whatever. We kind of just do it as a family. Um, and my mom works from home, so she's an upholsterer

Um, but like Joe was saying when she when she was working with her son living at home, my mom can't work that much because, you know, by the time the taxi comes at half past nine, and she then has only got till about three o'clock to to to get everything done. Because you can't you can't, you know, leave Jack to walk the dogs or clean the house very easily if if Jack's at home, depending on sort of what his mood is or how he's feeling or what he wants to do, Um and also he's so busy in the evenings each evening. He he's like out doing something

You know, he's out with his social groups or he's out doing the horses. Me, He's just He has a really, really busy life, and and he's a lot better. The busier he is, um and then he'll just crash and just sleep

So yeah, he he does do quite a lot and he enjoys all of his day opportunities. I've not got anything negative to say about any of his day opportunities. Um, you know, he likes them all that they they I mean the hub I I work very close to the hub as a as my work

Um, but he didn't enjoy the hub when they just kind of like it's quite institutionalised on some days, some, some things, what they do. It's quite old school in some things, Um, and you just sit in a room and and all sit around on a chair and bang a drama. It's not Jack's vibe, um, but the cooking is very much Jack's vibe and going out and buying food and learning skills

He really enjoys that kind of thing and feeling like a man and doing adult stuff. He loves that. And so he enjoys that, Um, but I think he's probably his favourite is Avenue East because they are out all the time, going places and doing things

And that's what Jack likes to do. He doesn't like to sit in a room. He likes to meet people and do things and go around and just say hello to everyone

He sees and says that everyone's beautiful and that they've got gorgeous eyes. What a flirt. He's very much a flirt

So yeah, no, he he loves his life, and he he's out all the time. Um, which I think is why my mom struggled a lot because she's constantly looking at the clock and getting him to places, and I think through covid that everything stopped. And it was really, really hard for me and Mom at first because I was living at home at that time

Um really, really difficult because we had Jack loves his routine to then go from that to nothing to know nothing for. I think it was about six weeks, so he didn't go to anything. Um, they'd all shut for a for a while

It was really, really difficult, but it was also nice because we weren't looking at a clock and rushing him around everywhere. And once he had got adjusted to not going places. It was really nice for us because we weren't, you know, like a taxi

We almost feel like a taxi sometimes taking him to places. And it's nonstop with him as well. Um, and I think now that everything's gone back to his old routine, My mum's gone

Oh my God, like this is too much. Now it's just like the The stress has just come all the way back, but it's come 700 times more stressful because she didn't she had a break and she's not had a break for 24 is. So it hit home a lot more, which I think is why she's She's struggling to cope more now

But from Jack's, you know, from Jack's what he does, he loves what he does. So that's that's really That's pretty awesome. That's what you want to hear, isn't it? For yeah

Yeah, absolutely. And Joe does. Does what does Chris do during the day? Er, Chris does a lot of, um, walking

It's one of his favourite pastimes, cos he walks from one lamp post to the next. He has a real interest in street furniture. I don't know if you can see above me that, um, yes, yeah, there's a picture

That's that's art work that Chris did a few years ago about Wow. Yeah. And it's a whole range of people, but dispersed in the people are also telegraph poles, bus stops, street lights, that kind of stuff

He likes tall objects with something on top. So So he's got this thing about just walking to the next tall object. Um and yeah

So he and does he do that with his p A s? Yeah. Yeah, Well, I mean, with the agency staff. Yeah, Yeah, they they just I if he sort of starts getting his shoes on

They're ready to go out the door with him. Not so much in the rain, which is a bit of a disappointment. They will take him out for a drive in the rain because he loves going out in the car because it's that motion and the scenery going past

That's all really stimulating for him. Um, he should be having, uh, home tutoring in art and crafts because we're trying to get him to the stage where he can make stuff to sell. Um, when he was in the last couple of years at school, he made a lot of stuff that people asked to buy

Um, he would paint, um, sort of like ceramic tiles and turn them into trivets, and we'd cook them in the oven. You know, the paint that you bake on and lots of people were asking for those, um, he's made quite a lot of artwork, which people have said, Oh, really like that. So we're just trying to get back into the without him having to go to college because college just wanted to teach him life skills, which he wasn't interested in

Um, So we're trying to get the art stuff restarted. Arts and crafts. He loves woodwork

Um, the table beside me is something he made when he was at school. So we know he's got the skills. It's just to get the right support, the right teaching for him to do that again

So that's what I'm looking for. And I've actually asked if we can have a personal budget for education. I'm waiting to see if we get that

And how old is Chris? He's 22. So he's 22. Yeah, he's got three years of education

Three more years left. Yeah, absolutely. So, you know, as a workshop and, uh, you know, do some stuff there

So that's the aim. Um, aside from that, he loves being on his iPad, watching videos. Um, he is now doing a bit of housework because we've got, um, the staff have had active support training

So even if he only plugs the Hoover in, that's, you know, a step towards him doing his own hoovering. He's started putting his clothes in the washing machine, which he never did here. I can say that, you know, for definite, um and we also got an Alexa to kind of help with time tabling things so that he's got a routine and the staff because they change

It's nice to have, you know, Alexa saying, Oh, is it time to do the laundry now? And so the staff team will, you know, be reminded as well, because it does change quite a bit, but, um, yeah, so far, so good..

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