As you’re well aware, to care for a person with dementia you have to have endless reserves of patience, empathy, resilience, cheerfulness, and a genuine affection for the sufferer. I have to state straight off the bat that I am not that person (though the affection is there!), and my lack of patience is probably the worst problem. Perhaps that’s a Scots trait – you may have some insight into that.

So to see that Vida Grange, and in my case and my partner’s, especially Waterside House, has care and nursing staff, cleaners, reception staff, right through to finance, laundry and maintenance personnel, who have these qualities in abundance, means a huge amount. (I’m sure the catering staff are no different, and I don’t mean to exclude them, but I just haven’t met any, though they do take care of my partner’s eating preferences too. The Christmas Day meal was excellent, and I owe them special thanks for making a gluten-free meal for me.)

My sister’s recent visit (from 200 miles away) has also been an objective confirmation that I couldn’t have found anywhere better for my partner to stay and be looked after. She was so impressed with Vida Grange and the staff on Waterside, and has not stopped telling anyone who will listen how wonderful it is.

It’s easy to morph into the Ancient Mariner and tell anyone who will listen about your trials and tribulations as a carer at great length; so it’s also brilliant to find that nobody has any reluctance to stand and listen to any issues you want to raise, and that they actively seek you out to talk about any aspects that they know you’re going to want to hear about.

Theresa’s work is invaluable not only to the residents but also to their relatives, certainly in my case.

Many thanks, and all the very best wishes to everyone for 2020.