Mr. G.*, he is a patient who touches me very much. He reminds me a little of my grandfather, among other things because he is elderly.
He's a very kind, gentle person. He always welcomes us with a big smile. He tells us "Oh my little guardian angels are here". These are lighter meetings than usual, where we don't have to negotiate everything all the time, as with some patients. Well, it depends on the subject (laughs).
He has big memory problems, and that affects me too. He sometimes tells the same things for an hour. It can seem tiring, but most of the time it touches me. I'm not sure why. I don't have the exact words.
He is a gentleman with whom we have to be very patient. He went back and forth between the street and different homes. But there is always a super strong bond with him. Even if it is sometimes one step forward and two steps back, I have the feeling that we always manage to move forward and that the bond will be there for a long time to come.
He describes himself as a "luxury homeless man". Even if with the Covid it is a bit more difficult. For example, he always tries to dress well. He also has his own little habits that he likes: drinking his coffee in the same place every morning, reading his newspaper and his Spirou. This routine "frames" him in his wandering, as he says himself.
Today we are in a phase with concrete projects, and leaving the street is imminent. But his big memory problems make things complicated. Among other things, to get him to show up for our appointments. He is strong in denial about this and he minimises a lot. At the same time, he accepts that we write it down on a piece of paper, and he welcomes it. He says "Yes, it's good that I keep it". But these forgetfulness remains a sensitive subject, because if he is reminded too much, he gets a bit angry.
His little habits can sometimes be a cause for concern. For example, some time ago we found him a great apartment, which he liked. But he only stayed there for a day and then he preferred to go back to his old place to sleep. So he lost that accommodation. We had to empty the flat and give him his stuff back on the street, in his usual place. He didn't even spend a single night there...
It's a lot of investment, it's frustrating, but it's part of the job. He hadn't been able to formulate his special needs before this move, despite our many interviews. He had a lot of anxiety with the idea of living alone in a neighbourhood he didn't know.
The positive point is that it has triggered a trigger, and we know better what suits him for the next time!
(*) We make every effort to respect the privacy of our patients and our professional secrecy. Nevertheless, we want to bear witness to how they have to survive and how we work together to reintegrate them. Therefore, the names of places and people are deliberately omitted or changed and real-life situations are placed in another context. There is no direct link between the photos and the stories above.
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