Chat@Caregiving: Why I Want to Recuperate at Remington.

So, back to how superior Remington Medical Resorts are! When their driver showed up, he was as appropriately attired as their transition coordinator had been.  He was perfectly groomed and wore a tan polo embroidered with Remington’s logo.

The wheelchair he pushed looked pristine, not like it had been banged around by several hundred people previous to transporting my mother. He was professional, courteous and quite pleasant.  He handled the move from the hospital bed to the wheelchair like someone who knew what he was doing.  He drove a crisp black van that screamed “properly maintained and carefully operated.”  Then he made sure I knew how to get to the facility and warned me of current traffic hazards that could cause a problem.

I keep a pretty close eye on Mom, but I sensed she was in good hands, so I felt like I didn’t have to follow the van all the way.  I got my car from the valet and headed to Remington at my own pace, even stopping at Chikfila for a to-go lunch.  The transition coordinator had assured me that Mom would have lunch upon arrival – and I believed her.

From the outside, the Remington Medical Resort looks more like a mid-sized suite hotel than it does a medical facility.  I found a parking spot and entered the lobby, expecting to be overwhelmed with opulence.  That’s what I’d seen at a few skilled nursing spots I’d been to recently.  Unfortunately, their opulence hadn’t been an omen of the services rendered, but the Remington lobby was all business.  Then they pressed a button and allowed me inside.  That’s where they’d put the opulence.

The first things my eyes latched onto were tiled garden, expensive carpet and rich woodwork.  I know from experience that appearances can be deceiving, but a thing of beauty is a joy – even in the short term. Next, I caught a glimpse of the first floor rehab facility.  We’re talking more Lifetime Fitness than Gold’s Gym.  And what was even better was that there were patients of all ages.  Mom’s had a pretty rough year.  I was afraid “medical resort” was some modern speak for “old folks home” and it was apparent that this wasn’t the case.

Upstairs on the second floor, I found a large, tasteful library.  Some folks were sitting on sofas chatting.  Others sat at a table with their laptops.  I saw a secondary rehab facility on this floor, smaller, but just as well equipped.  There was also a beverage station with something in a condensation-covered dispenser.  I felt cooler just looking at it.  For you non-Texans, the outside temps are already in the nineties.

A little further down the hall I found Mom.  Her room, like the exterior of the building, looked more hotel than medical.  She was tucked up in crisp white linens and was happy to see me.  I noticed that they’d put her right by the nurses station.  That transition coordinator hadn’t missed a lick.  She realized Mom was going to need more than the average level of skilled nursing.

As I took in the upscale upholstery, the drapery with sheers and the writing desk, I nodded with approval.  Immediately at my elbow was someone from food services to make sure that what they were serving was something Mom wanted.  Pesto grilled catfish, dirty rice and fresh Brussels sprouts sounded pretty good to me, but I’d already had my Chikfila.

Mom got her food and I started to unpack.  It may seem like a small thing to you, but I want to commend the Remington for providing a really nice luggage cart for transporting things from my car to Mom’s room.  I’ve encountered everything from nothing at all to a cart that looked great, but had a mind of it’s own.  This medical stuff is a hassle. Yes, I love my Mom and I’m not really complaining, but just because something is medically-related, I’ve never understood why it also has to be a pain in the watusi.

The word that keeps coming to mind when I think of Remington is well-maintained. If you are familiar with the facility, you might point out that it’s fairly new, but I’m here to tell you that even new places need maintenance.  My dad went to a very self-congratulatory facility that was brand-spanking new, but it didn’t take me long to figure out that it wasn’t going to be new for very long.  The culture of the place was just wrong.  Nothing worked exactly right.  The furniture was new and fancy, but not good quality. If you complained about something, you got excuses and blame shifting.  They had a great big brass luggage cart, but it’s wheels were crazy, it was too big for me manage successfully and I wish I had a nickel for every ding on it.

So like I said, the Remington’s luggage cart was perfect.  It looked like I was the first person to use it since it was unwrapped. It was large enough, but manageable.  It had lots of bars and hooks and such, so that whatever kind of luggage you’ve packed, the cart could accommodate it.  A luggage cart is a small thing, but it can tell you a lot about where your Mom will be staying.

But why do I want to check in?  We haven’t exactly gotten around to that yet.  Well, maybe if you come back next week, I’ll tell you.

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