Mother's Day

A truly priceless relationship in terms of countless love, devotion, and dedication towards children and the family is that of a mother and today we are celebrating that kind of unconditional love.

The relationship between Doris Zammit, a resident at Żejtun Home, and her daughter Terry Zammit, is the perfect example of unconditional love.

Doris Zammit, 94, has been residing at Żejtun Home for the past 10 years. Back then she already had symptoms of dementia but unfortunately due to the Coronavirus pandemic her situation deteriorated and she is now totally dependent on the constant care offered at Żejtun Home, one of the care homes managed by Care Malta.

Her daughter, Terry, makes sure to visit and spend time with her mother as much as possible even though she’s aware that her beloved mother might not recognize the word “mum”. Terry explains how hard it is to refer to her mother by her name.

“ It was extremely difficult for me to accept that my mother has dementia. When two of our relatives passed away she started feeling depressed and that was the turning point, I had to decide and choose the specialised care that my mother needed. Back then she was living at another facility, in Marsascala. Knowing that I had to take that decision I felt extremely guilty but I knew she needed constant care.”

When Terry had to change the facility her mother was residing at and relocate her to Żejtun Home, she went through another guilt trip because she knew that her mother had to adjust to a new environment.

“At Żejtun Home my mother found the support she needed especially from the carers but that support was also provided to me thanks to Edel Borg Mizzi who at the time was a Lead Carer at Żejtun Home. Edel made me understand and most of all accept that my dear mother had dementia. This process took time but luckily from then on, I could understand my mother better even though it was painful”.

Terry Zammit further explains that she could never abandon her mother even if it meant working twice as hard to give her anything she needs.

“We were inseparable even when my father was alive. I remember she loved cooking, knitting, and socialising. Her favourite thing to do was going around Valletta even though as a family we are from Floriana!”, said Terry with a cheeky smile while noting how one of the few things that her mother still remembers is St Publius.

Mother's Day

Unfortunately, the Coronavirus pandemic left its toll on Doris’s health.

“It is always a heartbreak when I see that the carers are more of a family to her than I am but knowing that her condition cannot get better I have accepted the situation and I feel that the least I can do is to reciprocate the love and care I once received from my mother. I could never abandon her and every time I visit her I feel at peace”.

Terry Zammit also mentioned how there is a need for more awareness when it comes to dementia and that she feels that it is still a taboo for some people.

Mother’s Day is celebrated across more than 40 countries of the world dating back to ancient Greece to the mothering Sunday originating in the United Kingdom in the 1600s. In 1914 Mother’s Day was made official when US President Woodrow Wilson declared the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day. From then on, the day gained popularity not only throughout the United States of America but also in other parts of the world, including Europe, although in some countries the day is not necessarily celebrated in May.