Today we set ourselves the extra challenge of feeding each other everything we ate (we were allowed to drink ourselves). This was because many people with swallowing difficulties also have movement difficulties which means they are unable to feed themselves. Additionally, often such individuals also have communication difficulties meaning they would be unable to say when they were hungry, finished eating or ready for the next mouthful. We decided this would be one challenge too far for us today. However, we still experienced some of the difficulties that these people face. Charis bashed Jenny’s teeth whilst feeding her breakfast and Jenny tipped half of Charis’ lunch on the floor! Oops.
In fact, even as we’re writing this Charis is spoon feeding jelly and custard into Jenny’s mouth, though this is a slow process – as much of today’s meals have been. Not spilling pudding on the laptop is an additional challenge!
Today our flatmate Mark cooked us a pureed dinner for the first (and last) time. We think he found it really hard to come up with something that could puree easily that a) he would want to eat unpureed and b) that we hadn’t told him he couldn’t cos we had already planned to do it later in the week (at least the first two ideas). In the end he made thai green curry and it tasted pretty good although probably better if not blended! Dinner took aaaages today as we were feeding each other. Obviously when you’re feeding yourself you pause to talk, but turns out you also cant feed someone else and talk at the same time! Unsurprisingly dinner was pretty cold by the time we’d finished.
Here’s some photos of today’s meals
Charis’ thoughts on the day:
Today was definitely the toughest day so far! I felt very dependent on Jenny all day and also a bit imposing whenever I wanted to eat anything. Meal times took sooo much longer than normal not only because you were being fed, but you then had to do it again for the other person!
I had my first pureed pasta today for lunch. This wasn’t too bad but my whole meal blended together was a bit samey and I didn’t really notice the pasta in it, it just added bulk.
Dinner tasted really good, but I wish I’d had some chunks of chicken to choose from and we found that rice isn’t the best blended food!
Jenny’s thoughts on the day:
No offence to Charis, but I really don’t want to feed her or her to feed me. It’s a hassle. I could only stay at the library for a short time so I was home by the time Charis (and I) got hungry again. We also had a think about the importance of positioning. You have to sit quite close to each other to feed each other, particularly if the ‘feedee’ doesnt move towards the spoon. It’s also important to be sat at the right height, as it’s really hard to judge how far to tip the spoon up as you pull it out of someone’s mouth to avoid wiping lunch on their nose!!
On the plus, everything tasted good today!!
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