No Enemies Here Continued…

Update from yesterday:   I had stepped out of the room for a few minutes, but when I returned, Mom’s chair is empty (no Mom in sight) and the walker still stands there beside it.  Oh Mom.  She has gone to use the bathroom.  I stand there, hesitating about what to do when I hear her come out and rather than head back to sit down, she walks further into her bedroom.   Ok, here we go…   I wheel the walker to the bedroom, and say, ‘Here, Mom, you forgot something’.   She shakes her head, rolls her eyes, and chuckles a bit as she takes hold of the handles and walks back to her chair.    At supper she tells my husband that the nurse told her she has to use that thing.  ‘I guess you’re going to be stuck with me for awhile’.   My husband says, ‘Oh Mom, don’t say it that way’.

I know she worries about imposing on us.   And I guess that is understandable.  My husband has been great.  So great.  His compassion and tenderness have always been his strong traits.  He is almost better with her than I am.  That was evident with my first posting of yesterday’s blog.

Lesson learned:  do not blog immediately following any incident.    Think first.  Write second.  Do not do both at the same time.

Mom is just getting up for the day.  Here she comes pushing that thing in front of her.  “Good morning, Mom… how about a cup of coffee?”

There Are No Enemies Here

The Home Health Nurse was here to see Mom this morning.   I stepped out of the room to answer the phone while she busied herself with Mom’s vitals and some small talk with Mom.  This small talk is designed to see how much clarity Mom has, although Mom doesn’t know she is being tested.  When I come back, the nurse says, ‘your mom says she’s going home this weekend.  Is that right?’   (sigh)  ‘Mom, I don’t think you’re quite ready just yet’.   ‘I agree’, the nurse quickly replies.  Almost too quickly.  Then she tells mom that she is too confused to go home.   Mom has enough clarity to be embarrassed by this.  My heart goes out to her.  It is sad.  She replies with her typical response , ‘well, I’m 83 years old! And all my friends are confused too’.    This almost makes me giggle.

Halfway through the day, the Physical Therapist arrives.   She hasn’t seen Mom in over two weeks due to Mom’s hospitalization.  The PT asks mom about the walker.   Mom explains that she hasn’t been using it.  ‘I’m weaning myself off’.  So I listen for the next ten minutes while the PT goes over and over why it’s important for Mom to use the walker.  Then she takes Mom into the kitchen to do a few leg exercises.   When they are finished, Mom begins to walk  back into the room without her walker.  The PT reminds her to take it, and as Mom turns away from her and looks my way, she rolls her eyes.  (Mom!!  Stop it!)  Then Mom says, ‘so I’m suppose to use the walker?’  Bless the Physical Therapist’s heart as she spends another 10 minutes going over it again.  Mom finally admits she will ‘not go out in public’ with that walker.  By this time, I’ve had enough.  I step in and say, ‘Mom, the experts at the hospital said to use your walker; I said to use your walker; your PT says to use your walker.   Can you just trust us and put your pride away for now?  If you fall, I’ll be planning your funeral most likely’.   This is the first time I’ve shown any exasperation with her, and I feel badly about it, but her pride is seriously going to be the death of her!

Mom has a justification for everything.   I can’t walk because my legs hurt; I can’t do that exercise because I had knee surgery;  I hang my head and don’t stand up straight because my head is full from allergies.  I AM walking around the circle 3 or 4 times (um, no you are not.  Is that a lie?  Or do you really believe you are?).  Please just accept what they say and let the professionals help you.  Stop making excuses!  Everyone wants you to get better.  The nurse.  The PT.  Me.   We’re all on your side!  Stop being so stubborn.

She hasn’t been out of the chair since the PT left.  It will be very interesting to see if she grabs that walker.    If not, I WILL be reminding her every single time.     I hate conflict.  I really do.  But I think I am going to have to prepare for some battles.  And that’s okay because we need to win this war.  Mom, we’re all on your side — there are no enemies here.

It’s a New Ballgame, And I Might Be In Trouble

This was a hard weekend, and I’m not even sure why.   I have so many conflicting emotions right now.  Mom appears to be getting better — both mentally and physically.  And that is wonderful.   She has clarity on most issues.   Evidently she had some vivid dreams while that drug was too high in her system, and on those “stories” she is adamant about what happened.   Even though we have tried to explain what really transpired, she won’t relent.  One particular event has become an area of contention between us so I am no longer going to talk about it at all.  Another lesson learned.   “Don’t you remember…” can no longer come out of my mouth.  Ever.

She is talking about going home.  She says she will stay here another week.  This is a new development.    She has been so weak and frail that going home wasn’t an option.  Also, mentally, she wasn’t able to sort things out in her mind, and I think she knew that — and it scared her.   But now, she is gaining strength and her mind is working at least as well as it was 3 months ago.  So now I have a dilemma.   I am no longer caring for a submissive sick woman.  Caring for her now is a bit more challenging.  I have to be on my toes and ready to play some mind games now.  In her mind, she is strong and capable of taking care of herself.   And she could for a day or two, but right now, she doesn’t have the endurance to keep on taking care of herself.   Before long, meals would become a pre-made-store-bought pudding cup and cookies; not because that is what she wants to eat, but because it is easy and quick and she’ll  not have the energy to prepare a good meal for herself.  That is clearly what was happening earlier this year.

I also see a shift in her countenance — she is willing to do what we ask, but she is rebelling on the inside.  This, I must admit, brings a smile to my face.  We do go backwards at some point — “The Curious Case of Benjamin Buttons” playing out before my own eyes.     She doesn’t seek out any privacy when she talks on the phone to her friends, and occasionally, she lets slip what she really thinks.   ouch.  I think I might be in trouble here.    My siblings and I emailed back and forth yesterday.  I am going to need some hefty reinforcements soon.  They are somewhat divided on whether Mom will ever go back to her home.  Uh oh.  I guess I should have seen that coming too.

There are so many things to consider when she wants to go home.  We are not only considering recent health issues, but her apartment lease is up in 3 months.  What then?    And to be frank, we don’t really want her to go back to that apartment.  She has lived there for 3 years, and has had major allergy issues ever since she signed the lease.  And even though I am taking 2 different allergy meds myself this week due to the tree/grass pollens, she appears to be doing fine; she hasn’t sneezed once in 4 weeks!  ‘Mom, how are your allergies?  Do you have a headache or scratchy throat?’  ‘No, I’m doing fine’.    Hmm…. makes us wonder if the allergies were due to mold or something within those 4 walls.  But she loves that apartment.  I think I might be in trouble.

So as I begin week 4 of Mom here in my home, I realize it is a new ball game.  We had gotten accustomed to one another and had settled into a routine, but the rules have changed.   So did I want Mom to get better?  Isn’t that what I prayed for?  Absolutely!!   But her “better” may never be better enough for her to actually go back home.  Her better may be just enough to make her miserable.  And I’m not sure what I’m going to do.

I think I might be in trouble here.

Lord, I need wisdom here.  I need discernment.  I need patience.  Help me today to make the right decisions in caring for Mom..  Help my sisters, brother and me to make the right decisions for our Mom for her future.   Help us to love and honor her in all these decisions.   I pray that she is content and happy.  I pray that she has a peace about it.  Oh Lord, we need help!

I’m weary, but I’m Ok

I’m weary and tired today.  Mom has annoyed me a little bit.  It’s all fine, or will be.  But she can be a very stubborn woman.  At times it’s like hitting my head against a brick wall.  She has like 15 people – professional and family — telling her what she has to do to get better.  But she can’t seem to get the connection between exercising her body and getting well.  She thinks if she rests in the chair, she will get better.  One day she is just miraculously going to stand up and be healthy again.

I started this blog as a journal for me as I care for my mom.   I know some family members are now reading my posts, and that has caused me to edit some of what I might write.   But sometimes I just need to say what’s really in my head and on my heart.   Some days I might just need to express a little frustration.   And that doesn’t mean that you need to help or be concerned.  I’m ok.  We’re ok.  I just need to write it down.

And today I’m just weary.

There’s Still Fight Left In Her

 

Mom has been off the Dilatin for over a week, and there is much improvement in many areas.  She is no longer having trouble with double vision.  She does not shuffle her feet when she walks, and for the most part, holds her head up straighter.  Her words are no longer garbled and hard to understand.  The “wobbly” painful legs are improving every day.  And her mental clarity has been noticeably better.

She has been running a very low fever this week; hardly even.  You and I wouldn’t even consider it a fever, but with the sick elderly, even a slight fever is noted.  She has not complained about anything, and the home care nurse asked specific, personal questions.  ‘No, everything is okay’.

Yesterday wasn’t a great day.  We had two doctor appointments:  Hearing Aid check-up and Post-hospital check-up.  Mom asked me 4 times before we left the house, ‘where are we going?’  Seriously?   This hasn’t happened all week.  She has remembered almost everything (except the funny story she keeps embellishing about how she obtained her new walker — dream?).  But yesterday, she was confused.  And she looked weary.   This saddened me because she has had a pretty great week, and she has looked more like herself than she has for a very long time.  Note to self:  when conversing with a person with dementia, stop using the phrase, ‘don’t you remember…’   It only causes both of you to be frustrated in the end.  It is what it is. Period.  Her version.  My version.

At the doctor appointment, she struggled to converse with the doctor.  She pointed to me so I did most of the talking, and it’s a challenge to be honest with the doctor, and not “throw Mom under the bus”.  Her perception of her exercise and eating is different than mine.  She is also holding firmly onto some drugs she has taken for years, and possibly no longer needs.  I’m not talking addiction, but rather, security.  Mom had a few seizures 40 years ago, and she is terrified of having another one.   She says it’s embarrassing.   The doctor is more concerned about her life and death issues, and not so concerned about her pride.  He would like to wean her off and determine if she is seizure-free at this point.  He doesn’t want her on drugs she doesn’t need.    Mom is adamant that she will not go off the drugs.   So I tried to disappear into the corner, and let the two of them duke it out.  After all, I have to live with this woman.   And to be honest, she is a grown woman, who has most of her mental faculties.  The decision is her’s.   We have a seizure prescription in our hand when we leave the office.  Round 1:  Mom

Mom almost didn’t make it to the bathroom yesterday — a couple of times.   Ok, let’s add this up:  low-grade fever; confusion; frequent bathroom stops.   Sounds like a UTI to me.   Of course, it is Saturday, so I call the home health nurse (what a blessing she has been on a couple of weekends now) and tell her Mom’s symptoms.  She agrees that a urinary tract infection is probable.  She places a call to the doctor, and an antibiotic is waiting at the pharmacy.  Hopefully, the confusion will improve in a day or two.

My sister came to visit today.  I sent the two of them out of the house.  Mom says, ‘aren’t you coming with us?’  I felt slightly guilty, but replied, ‘no, I am not’.  There is laundry to do, weeds to pull, floors to clean.  And a blog post to be written!  There are just normal, everyday chores that need to be done.  And to be honest, I am enjoying a little bit of solitude.  I know Mom would probably like some solitude too.  I have been pondering putting a chair and TV in her bedroom for that very reason.  However, I don’t want her to feel like I am banishing her from our living room.  I just thought she might like some privacy.    I also don’t want to take away her hope of going home.  The more I make my house look like her permanent residence, the more I worry about her losing hope.  I think she needs goals.  She needs to look forward to going back to her home.  That may happen, and it may not.   Today, I’ll leave that extra chair out of her bedroom because for now, I’m choosing to give her hope.

ps — Mom and my sister just returned from their outing.  It’s probably a good thing that Mom lives with me — I think the two of them just might kill each other!

Lord, thank you for the progress Mom has made this week.  Thank you for giving the doctor’s wisdom in treating her.  Please help Mom and I to continue to be kind and gracious to one another.  May our days be sweet.  Thank you for helping her to get better this week.  Thank you for that answered prayer.

Philippians 4:6  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

 

Almost 84 Years And Given a New Name

It’s Easter morning.   I didn’t go to church today.  I only remember missing one Easter service in the last 35 years.  It was the day my first child was born — an Easter baby.  We are going to celebrate her birthday this afternoon after our Easter celebrations.

I am  grateful that my Mom is here with us to celebrate (she came here after hospitalization after all).  She is feeling better.  Not perfect, but better.  She has so much more clarity.  I can hear her talking on the phone with friends and family members, and she is making sense — and most of the details are accurate.

My grandchildren will be here today, and they will be excited to see that GG is home from the hospital.  GG is what they began calling her when she came here to live with me.  They struggled with a Gramma and a Great Gramma, and it all got a bit confusing.  The 5 year old boy finally landed on GG — and it has stuck.   I think it’s cute and endearing.   Mom is almost 84 years old and she has been given a new name!  Last week when she wasn’t here, my grandchildren were disappointed.

It is so sweet to watch their interaction.  I know the days get a bit long for Mom with 3 or 4 children undertow.  Sometimes the noise level gets a bit high, but she is getting to know those children as I know them.  She is making an impression into their young lives that they will remember.  I love that.

Welcome home, GG, the kids will be very excited that you are here.  So Am I.

Toxic Levels

At 2 a.m. my phone rings — again.  I sit straight up in bed, and I answer it by the second ring.  Since that episode last month, my phone is charged in our bedroom so I can hear it — no longer out in the kitchen.  I won’t make that mistake again.

It is Mom this time.   She says my name tentatively then, “where am I?”

“You’re in the hospital, Mom”

“Why”

“Because you were having some trouble.  Your legs weren’t working”

“Am I going to stay here?”

“No.  You are better.  I am coming to get you later.”

“Where am I?”   I tell her again and I say the name of the town as well.  I assure her she is better and that she will come home today.  There is a long pause and then she says my name again ,

“do I need to be put away?”

“Oh Mom, no. No no no. You are okay.  You will come here.  Mom, everything is fine.  I want you to come here.

“Ok.  That’s good.  Ok, I understand.  That’s good”

“Mom, you’re going to come to my house later today.  I am coming to get you”

“Ok, ok that’s good”

We talked for a few more minutes, and once I thought she had settled, we said our good-byes and our ‘I love yous’, and I hung up.    Wow.  Do I go back to bed?  Do I go to the hospital? This is a first.  She sounded really tired.  Bad dream? She has never had trouble sleeping before. I’m fairly certain she has fallen back asleep already.

At 8 a.m. as I am getting around to head to the hospital, another call from Mom.  ‘where am I? Where are you?  Why am I here?’

Oh my, something is wrong.   I finish getting around and head to the hospital as fast as I can.   She is agitated when I get there.  She points to the white marker board, and in bold letters it says, HOLD DILATIN.   This is a med she has been on for over forty years.  She is afraid to go off due to a few seizures she had over forty years ago.   I cringe when I read the sign, and I know exactly why she is upset.   When she woke up — both during the night and this morning — she read that sign.  Her hearing may be awful, but her eyesight is good.  Her focus has been on that marker board.  She is upset, mad and afraid, and very confused.  I take a few minutes to calm her down and leave her in the care of a technician while I head to the nurses’ station.

As I go, I smile because I know we may have finally landed on “the problem”.  Yay!  And sure enough, the doctor explains to Mom that she has toxic levels of that med in her system.  It takes awhile, but we finally make it clear to her that the poison of this med is much worse than the benefit right now.  We need to deal with that first and handle seizures, if necessary, with other meds.   I text my siblings to bring them up to date.  A bit later, my sister calls me and says, “have you read the list of symptoms of toxic levels of that drug?”  The list is lengthy and many of Mom’s problems are on the list.  We are encouraged.

They begin the process of flushing this med out of her body  and now we wait —  and hope.

That Would Be Terminal For You

The good news is the CT scan was normal.  The bad news is Mom is back in the hospital.  I just want to cry.  I tried so hard to avoid her going back in, but some things are just out of my control.  It isn’t her heart or her congestive heart failure.  Blood work showed that she has improved in two weeks.  But her legs just won’t work.  And the doctors all agree that something isn’t quite right;  she is a fall risk.  The ER doctor bluntly said, ‘you can’t go home because you might fall and break your hip, and that would be terminal for you’.   Ouch.  But it was what Mom needed to hear.  It was what I needed to hear because I wasn’t so sure I was going to leave her there.

I am here at home today caring for my three grandsons.  The distraction is good.  My sister-in-law is at the hospital texting me periodically with updates:  ‘waiting for MRI…   gone for MRI…. will take about an hour…  Doctor just in…. He is coming up with nothing’.  Great.  Not what I wanted to hear, but I guess I don’t know what I want to hear.  I’m not sure there are any good scenarios here.

So I wait.   Hard to be here and not there.

I don’t think she’ll be coming back here for awhile.  I think they will try to do rehab somewhere.   That “somewhere” will most likely be the local nursing home.  And that makes me want to cry too.   I know Mom doesn’t want to go there.  I told her I would do everything I could to keep her here.  I just pray to God if she has to go there, it will only be temporary.   I don’t want her last days to be in a nursing home.

I fear she won’t come out.

 

 

 

She Just Listened For Our Cries

I was born in a small town hospital and lived in an old white farmhouse for my first four years.  I hardly remember anything about that house.  There are a couple of snapshots in my head, but that’s about all.  I had two older sisters and one older brother;  he was still a baby himself when I came into this world.  I know my Mom was busy with all those kids.  Another sister was born three years later.  It’s a wonder she got any sleep at all.  They didn’t have baby monitors back then.   She just listened for our cries.

I had four babies of my own.  For the first three, I too just listened during the night.  I didn’t sleep soundly in those days.  The least little whimper from those kiddos, and I was wide awake.  I spent many nights in a comfy recliner, rocking babies and making promises to God if He would only make them sleep.  By the time our fourth and last baby was born, I had a baby monitor system.  I don’t know that we really needed it.  After all, I had never slept through a baby’s cry.  And the monitor only intensified every single burp and gurgle.  I think I got less sleep with that contraption.

Funny how life circles back around.  I’m lying in bed listening to my mom over a recently installed monitor.   I can hear her trying to get settled; a few grunts and several deep sighs.  I just tucked her into bed and turned off the light.    I don’t “tuck her in” every night.  She has been pretty independent, however, she is struggling right now.  Her legs are like noodles; not sure why.   As she was getting ready for bed, she dropped her hearing aid.  After bending or squatting to get it, she couldn’t get back up.  Thankfully, I was keeping watch in the hallway.   “Mom, you okay?  Do you need help?”    My husband and I easily stood her back up.  I know she hates this.  She hates being weak and dependent on anyone.

After she was done in the bathroom, I walked her back into the bedroom, and helped her into bed.  “Mom, please call me if you need to get up during the night.   Your legs are a little wobbly today.  Please let me help you.   I don’t mind getting up”.   I know she hates that too.   She doesn’t want to be a burden.   And she is not — no more than I was when I lived in her home and I needed her.

So as I listen over this monitor, waiting for her to fall asleep, emotion overtakes me and I begin to cry.  I let the tears freely fall and grieve for my Mom.    I’m worried about her.

I won’t sleep soundly tonight.   And that’s okay.

Lord, help me to enrich my Mom’s life.  I don’t want the days to just slip by.  I don’t want to get so caught up in the daily care of her body that I forget to nurture her spirit as well.  Lord, I love my Mom.   Help me to bless her.

Ephesians 4:29  Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, that it may give grace to those who hear.

 

 

Good Luck, PT

So Mom has been very lethargic and weak the last two days.   It may be that Physical Therapy did too much with her on Friday.  That would normally irritate me because they are the experts and they should know what they are doing.  And Mom, who has been rolling her eyes at me about physical therapy said, ‘see? enough of that!’

However, when I look at the choices of what could be wrong — PT messing up is the best option.  Because as I watch Mom, and do some reading about her symptoms, I think she has a lot of Parkinson’s Disease symptoms.  A lot.  I actually mentioned this to her new doctor last week, but he didn’t think so (after 10 minutes in the room with us!).   I also told him that she fell a couple of years ago — fell over backwards off a friend’s porch and hit her head.   I don’t think she ever went to the doctor for that accident.  Anyways, I must have said enough because he did order a CT scan.  She will have that done tomorrow.   So if I have the choice between PT over-doing it or Parkinson’s.  I choose PT screwing up.

But I will be shocked is it isn’t Parkinson’s.

By the way, PT is scheduled again for tomorrow morning.  Yeh, good luck with that.  I think you may see some eye rolling and attitude yourself from my Mom.   … just sayin

Lord, we need some help here.  Please give the doctors wisdom.  Help them discover what is going on.   We need some answers.  Mom is not getting better.  She should be getting better.  I want her to get better…

No Spunk Today

The house is quiet.  Everyone, that is Mom and my husband,  has gone to bed.  I know I should go to bed too.  It’s late, and I will hate myself in the morning for not getting enough sleep.  But I revel in this quiet.  This time that is all mine.  And it’s not like Mom is even much trouble; really she is not.  But it’s just I need some moments when I am not responsible for anyone.  Here. Now.

Earlier this week, when my husband got home from work, he stayed with Mom and I went to CVS .  I told him I was going to pick up a prescription, and I was going to take my time.  The drugstore, for pete’s sake, but we live in a small town where everything closes down with the sunset.

Yesterday, my sister-in-law invited my mother to her house for the day.  After I dropped Mom off, I was like a kid in a candy store.  What should I do? What should I do?  Truth be told, there were not enough hours remaining in the day to get done all I wanted to get done.

This sounds like I am complaining, and I don’t mean to be.  Seriously.  It’s just being responsible for another human being is a little daunting…. again.   It’s like bringing home that first baby.  No one can prepare you.  No matter how many times you hear “just wait ” you still don’t understand the constantness of parenthood until that baby is living with you 24/7.  It’s like that.

In some ways this is good discipline for me.  I can’t just drop everything and run to a store.  I have to prioritize and plan errands.  And that is a good thing.  Thank goodness, I  am a homebody by nature.  Even so…

Today wasn’t a good day for Mom.  And I am feeling very melancholy.  She was so weak and frail, and I guess, sad.  And that is hard to see.  She is spunky by nature.  No spunk today.  I wonder if I’ll ever see the spunk again.

Lord, I love my Mom.  Give her rest tonight.  Help her sleep peacefully.  Help her to have a better day tomorrow.  Give her back some of that spunk that I use to grumble about…   and Lord, forgive me for that.prayer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Don’t Know What To Do

Well, two days ago, I would have said Mom is improving.   After crashing on Monday when out-of-town family left, she rallied and has had a good week.  However, yesterday, she was just so confused all day.  She spent the day with my sister-in-law, and on the way to her home, she  asked me three times in the car, ‘where are we going?’.  Her home health nurse and physical therapist went there to see her.  But she didn’t seem to recognize them or understand why they were there.  Last night when my brother brought her home, she looked totally exhausted.

When she came out this morning, she was dressed — complete with shoes and earrings.    I thought that was a great start to the day.     But as we talked over a cup of coffee, and she fidgeted with her hearing aids (replacing the batteries again!),  she just didn’t seem herself.   I was hoping to get the name of her hearing-aid company so we could once again order batteries from them.  Recently, I’ve been picking them up at the local drugstore, and they just don’t last as long.  But Mom couldn’t remember the company or the fact that she had always gotten the batteries from them.  She was just confused by the conversation; so I dropped it.

After breakfast, she headed to her chair, and has slept the morning away.  I have banged pots and pans and dishes as I emptied the dishwasher.  I even used my cellphone to call the house phone so the ringing would wake her up.   I put on an old movie  — she loves old movies.  I turned the volume up really really loud , and made a mental note to pick up some ear plugs for myself.  “Mom, here’s a movie coming on.  Cary Grant and Grace Kelly”.   She roused and said, “oh, that’ll be good”.   I think she may have seen bits and pieces, but she still slept through most of it.

I woke her again; fixed her lunch.   She is cold.  I helped her into her fleece sweater; checked her temperature.  She says she feels fine, but she is just tired today.   So sad.  This is not my mom.

Usually I insist that she walks more; lets get that blood pumping.   I often have her “walk the circle” in my house a couple of times when she gets up to use the bathroom.   She is usually reading the paper or doing a crossword puzzle.  She loves to watch the news.  But not today…

I put a Julia Roberts movie on because Julia is one of her favorite actresses.  But she is sleeping again.   She hasn’t done this before — slept the day away.  I’m not sure what to do.  Will this disrupt her sleep tonight?  Is she sick?  She ate a good lunch.   She just can’t keep her eyes open today.

I don’t know what to do.

Lord, I need wisdom and clarity today.  These are the days that I get overwhelmed with this task.  I don’t know what I am doing.  Please help me to give her the best care.  Help me to know what to do and when to do it.   Please give Mom strength today.  Her body is so tired and frail.  I don’t know what to do…

Why Can’t I Just Go Home?

It’s been a little over two weeks since Mom came to live with us.  She was so incredibly weak when she arrived.   What did they do to her in that hospital?  She was better before she went in!  How can “taking water off” her body leave her so emancipated?  She looks like she has aged 10 years.

We have tried to settle into a routine, but life has been a little crazy.  Home Health Care is coming for awhile to help with rehabilitation.  There was one nurse who came for two and half hours just to ask questions.  There was a physical therapist who came for about an hour and half and evaluated Mom’s legs — walking, balance, etc.  The next day, an occupational therapist came to check on her arm strength and cognitive skills.  Then the next week, actual therapy began.

Mom isn’t a happy camper about therapy.  She rolls her eyes at me (kinda funny — is this payback time, Mom?).   She thinks once she is back on the golf course, she will get strong.  “Golfing will make me strong”.    I think I may have to take her into the backyard myself and let her attempt to swing that club.  I think she is a kinetic learner.  Once she actually sees that she cannot golf, physical therapy may not seem so silly to her.

So in the last two weeks, I think we have had a total of seven different professionals here.  Those who evaluate, those who actually train, and those who fill in for those who train when they go on vacation.  What a zoo!    And on top of all that, we had a big milestone birthday bash for my husband here — planned months ago.  I felt sorry for Mom.  So many people here and such a long evening for her.  She did great, but she was exhausted.

The next weekend, she went to my sister’s.  My husband and I had a short getaway planned to Chicago to complete his birthday celebrations.  Again, Mom, I’m sorry.   I know routine is your friend.  Life has been anything but routine.  She is confused about why she has to go there.  ‘Why can’t I just go home?’

I’m getting that question a lot.  I don’t blame her.   I try to make things as easy for her as I can.  I try to give her plenty of “space” to do what she wants.  I haven’t made any extra demands on her about eating or exercising.  She is eating well and walking.   I’m trying to give her as much freedom as possible.  But I know she just wants to be in her home.  I get that.  And it makes me really sad.  I wish I could give her that; and it breaks my heart that I can’t.

 

Lord, Show me how to make Mom as comfortable as possible.  Help her adjust to our home.  Make it her home.  Give her peace and contentment.  Please don’t her friends forget she is here.  Help me to be creative in getting them together.