MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – On Thursdays, Linda Lloyd would usually prepare to take her mom to the hair salon, but the coronavirus is keeping residents at assisted living facilities inside their rooms.
“Look at my hair. It looks terrible,” Phyllis said, while looking at her daughter through her window. That’s how visits with mom are now for Linda Lloyd.
Phyllis, Linda’s mom, suffers from dementia. Over the past month, Phyllis’ memory has worsened. Linda believe’s it’s because they aren’t able to spend time together like they used to.
She loved to take her mom out for ice cream or to Cracker Barrel after leaving the hair salon on Thursdays. Other days of the week they spent time shopping together or riding around.
“At least I know I’m not alone,” Phyllis said.
“No. You’re not alone. I’m four miles at work,” Lisa explained.
“Four miles down the road…that’s good to hear,” Phyllis said with relief.
Linda’s last hug from her mom was over a month ago when family members were able to take residents out of the facility. A coronavirus test was required from both family members and residents before coming back.
But since a resident on Phyllis’ side of the facility tested positive for coronavirus they are no longer able to leave.
Linda says sticking to their normal routine helped with her mom’s dementia. Now, she feels torn apart.
“No. I don’t want my mother to have COVID, but I also don’t want something to happen to her that she feels she left this world alone,” Linda explained.
Doing everything she can to maintain a sense of normalcy has been a challenge. As the days grow longer during the pandemic, Linda is trying to stay encouraged.
Staff at Myrtle Beach Estates are providing tablets for residents to connect with loved ones via Zoom. Although Linda is grateful to be able to talk with her mom through her window, she says it’s not the same.
“When you’re trying to juggle a visitation to your loved one and you’re trying to work and you’re trying to manage your home – you just need to sit back and take a breath and say it’s going to be okay,” Linda explained. “It’s going to get better.”