Category Archives: alzheimers

Just one stitch..

I’m putting the last border on the New Grand Puppy quilt. #1 picks her up Sunday so I have to wait until then to embroider the name. But it’s a two-day drive home so it will be ready before she gets here! I got a couple more throat widths done on the Bubble Quilt. First the background then the metallic thread. I am so happy I got the tension problem fixed! Quilting life is good here again!

Today is already stacking up to be one of those days! I took my other grand dog to get neutered this morning. It has my stomach so upset! I can’t pick him up until 3 pm. So today I’ll worry all day! Meanwhile I will quilt.. it is the only relaxing thing I can think of!

Also I spent some time with my Mom this morning.. it’s hard. Everytime I think it’s going to get better she slides back three steps. Everything that happens seems to be a personal attack on her worth as a person.  I’m frustrated trying to convince her that not only is she loved but she is lovable.

 Taking it one stitch at a time today.. hope your day is un-eventful!

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Filed under alzheimers, baby quilt, puppy, quilt

Repetition..

A "speed hump" sign in Sante Fe, New...

Image via Wikipedia

Have you ever had to repeat yourself? No, I mean a lot, and for hours? Reality dictates that sometimes it is necessary to get your point across. You find different ways to say the same thing and each time it gets more believable or acceptable. That was my day yesterday.. and today, same thing. Actually I have about three days of going over the same three truths.

  1. No more driving
  2. You can’t live alone
  3. Your husband is gone and does not want to come back

These truths really stink. It’s not a fun thing to talk about. There is no humor to be found. I’m a shock and awe kind of person so it was a hard day for me. I really prefer to just get stuff done but not everyone is that way, they need to think about things and then settle into them.

I love my mother. She has been my best friend for most of my adult life. She had such a sense of humor and fun that you couldn’t wait to spend time with her. Now she is going the opposite way.. yet I still see sparks of her in there.. I want her back! So I will continue to chip away at this until I find her and bring her back or.. well, honestly or else!

I’m resolute and I’ve got back-up on the way. My sister will be here in a few days. She’s the take charge person and much better suited for these type of things except that it’s like holding up a mirror between them.. they are almost identical in their stubbornness. My mother will fight it simply if she thinks it is what my sister wants done.

My sister and I used to fight over who got to have Mom live with them when she got older. It was such a competition that today it seems funny. Well just for the record.. I’m gonna win! I just hope I get the fun and funny Mom!

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Driving Miss Daisy…

Livingstone daisy

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I’ve done well lately just putting one foot in front of the other. Actually I’ve gotten a lot done, just none of it was on my work list. I’m learning  a lot too. There are quite a few companies who do not work well with older people. But I’d rather concentrate on those who were understanding and helped. Progressive Insurance was awesome! Progress Energy another case of great customer service. SunTrust bank has the best customer service I’ve been exposed to from a bank in a really long time.

I still have a bunch more calls to make and papers to fill out. But hopefully this week will end the paperwork. Just a few more days.. I can do this! I’ve also been reminded about something wonderful that I have.  My DH is awesome! He has helped me to remain sane during all the drama and just simply let me vent. He has also been on one phone while I was on another helping me to get everything done quickly.

I look forward to getting back into the quilt room for a little therapy. The wedding quilt is calling to me. Not to mention the other two that must be done before Christmas. I’ve been thinking lately that I just must have some new placemats and a table runner for the holidays too. I wonder if that will happen? I still have two walls and the entire dining room to paint. Maybe I’ll talk my DH into helping with that? Probably not but one can hope..

 I miss you all and hope to be back soon.. but if I’m not, know that I’m thinking about you!

Joy can be found.. you have only to look.

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Filed under alzheimers, random thoughts

What ‘cha gonna do?

Candles spell out the traditional English birt...

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Each day seems to have a remembrance. Some more emotional than others. But the older I get it seems there is something different that I can recall each day. Yep I’m that old!

Sunday is my oldest sons’ birthday. He turns twenty-eight years old. Yes the day he turned eighteen and had to register for the selective service was 2001. I don’t know anyone who was in New York that day, nor do I have any inspiring tales. I remember someone called and told me to turn on the television. Half the day was gone before I told my son happy birthday that day.

The more days I live through, the more I am in awe of. (shhh.. I just ended that sentence with a preposition) See, I even remember the weird stuff! Memory is a funny thing. We take it for granted and it frustrates us when we forget things. I forget a lot, I lose words or forget what I’m talking about mid-sentence. That drives my poor DH nuts! But I make up words and my family thinks that part is funny.

 Loads has been written about dementia, what it is, how it happens and even how to cope with living with someone who has it. Sorry but it doesn’t seem to soften the blow. I haven’t found any information that says “yep this, is what you do” to get through it. I have to keep putting one foot in front of the other and live through it. Just say the same thing twenty times without getting frustrated and smile. Walk outside, get in the car and scream my lungs out. Then go back in and smile.

I didn’t do that today. I didn’t smile or shut myself in the car. Today I didn’t do it right. I have to get better at this, it’s not going away. There is not a perfect formula and some days are just hard.

Finding joy in a quiet moment…

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Swim Meet Night

This is our last year.. it’s been a fun ride. Only five more weeks and we’re done.

Dad is doing a bunch better and is nearly done with rehab.. but he won’t be able to come home. He will be going to a care facility. Mom is getting a bit stronger but we still have a way to go with her. There are still a few doctors appointments and tests for Mom to go through so we can get a plan for her. She is more ornery each day. My friend (second mom) is still in ICU but we’re really hopeful.

I’ve had a few days to rest here and there so I’m not wiped out like  was. Of course there is still major changes to my routines so that’s something I’m going to adapt to. I’m still trying to figure out my quilting schedule and of course there is still home improvements that must be finished. 

All in good time. It’s not as over whelming like it was at the beginning. Thanks so much for keeping us in your prayers. I’m still finding my pockets of joy thoughout the day! I hope you’re finding them too!

 

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Filed under alzheimers, postaday2011, quilter, random thoughts

One more thing

Heart-shaped cloud

It seems to be another “just one more thing” .. I think I’m numb now. Or maybe not facing reality? Whatever I’m doing it’s working . Now my second mother is in another hospital ICU with CHF and kidney failure.

More than anything I’m grateful to have so many second family members that are this important to me. Adopted family members.. men and women that have stolen my heart (okay, I gave it willingly). My brother’s wife lost her father yesterday they are now on their way to the storm torn area of Connecticut.

My Mom asked me yesterday if I believed in old wives tales. We had three things that had happened and she was relieved that it was over. I didn’t answer her.. I always thought things happened in fives. So I’m sitting here waiting for the next phone call. Isn’t that silly?

I actually woke up thinking about doing some drywall finishing and maybe the backing for the wedding quilt. We both know that’s not going to happen. But that it was my first thought on waking is kinda scary. Reality sank in quickly. I hope to get some kind of schedule set soon but for now I’m going with the flow and looking forward to drywall and quilting!

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Miracles happen everyday!

Hummingbird in Ohio

Here is another Hummingbird picture I snapped while I was in Ohio. I was shocked that I got one of him sitting in the tree.

Miracles happen around us everyday! As most of y’all know my Dad (okay he’s my step Dad but to me he is so much more than that) is now in a rehab facility. One we did not want him to go to. But let me tell you .. he went from being a combative and non communicative patient to the life of the party! He went from not being able to hold a conversation to talking to everyone!  Okay, he doesn’t know where he is and not even his wife’s name but… he really seems to be enjoying himself. In the last twelve hours his blood sugar is now good and he can have ice-cream, his blood pressure is perfect and he has lost twenty pounds in one week!!

My Mom is taking it hard. “Why doesn’t he do that for me.”… but we have now found that it is common with Alzheimer’s patients to behave this way. He still has a few medical issues to deal with but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. So now we need to concentrate on Mom. We have appointments throughout the next few weeks and she has to start eating. My brother has started helping and maybe I won’t have to get help from my sister who has always done so much. She can step back and be the back-up instead of the first line to call.

SEE?! Miracles! My step-sister ( I learned so much from her) went home today but in her wake I have the tools to get things done without having to call in my big sister (the one I share giggle fits with).. My big sister has always had to get the ugly stuff done but now I feel equip so she doesn’t have to be the bad guy all the time.

I did get a couple dozen one inch diamonds hand pieced while waiting for doctors. But I kept wondering how much more I could have gotten done if I had quilt in a box like http://quiltobsession.wordpress.com/2011/08/10/stormy-seas-6/ has set up! If only I was that organized! Maybe in my next life!

Tomorrow is another busy day. I’m hopeful I will get some more stitching done in the midst of everything else.

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Another day another disappointment..

frustrated

Another twelve-hour day. I am just exhausted by the medical community. It matters not what you think is the best treatment plan for your loved one. It only matters what the doctors want to do. What is convenient to them.

Nurses and nurses aides are under paid and over worked.  I have not met one who did not truly care about the patient in this experience. My spirit is buoyed by these people!

On the other hand my father has been sent to one of the leading rehab inpatient treatment centers that do not have services for Alzheimer’s or dementia patients. He was transferred against our wishes at 9 pm at night. We followed by car and when we got there we were expected to stay to watch him, we were told by the hospital that transferred him that we could only visit one hour a day. When we got there they told us he would have to push a button for help, they checked on patients every two hours.

Wait for it.. the transfer stated that there was no hip surgery he was transferred for strengthening. The staples are still in his hip. Well, the staples he hasn’t already pulled out are still there and yes, he pulled the drainage tube out too!

We don’t live in an area that only has one rehab facility. They are everywhere! I mean come on! We live in Florida! The one the doctors insisted on is the one that did not have services … Sorry I am on a rant. I’m frustrated and saddened that this has happened.. I’m sitting here waiting for the phone to ring.

Thank you all for the prayers.. I am sure they are the only reason we are still putting one foot in front of the other.

 

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24 of 48

Logo of Alzheimer's Society.

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I’ve spent 24 of the last 48 hours in the hospital with my step-dad. My mom thinks I’m mean because I keep making her eat and she doesn’t want to. I’m tired but she is just plain worn out. Alzheimer’s and dementia are cruel things to those that have to deal with it. He will be on a plane bound for Memphis on Monday. Twenty seven years ago he purchased a lifetime care policy at a Alzheimer’s care facility there.

Because we know what he wants to do it makes these decisions a little easier but they hurt just the same. He can’t tell us when he is in pain. We have to watch for signs. He doesn’t know he has broken his hip or that he has had surgery. Last night after we left he pulled a staple out.

The nursing staff is amazing. But I really don’t know what people who don’t have family that can take shifts helping do?

 This has been a difficult week but I know there will be more. Mom is left behind in Florida and he will be there in Tennessee. Her life has been as a caregiver for years now. She will have too much time on her hands. She has neglected herself for so long and it will be a climb to get her back to where she will take care of herself again.

I’m sad yet I still have hope. I find my joy in that.

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OH YEAH!

See what I had to do to make it fit in here?

In my spare time I sold my commercial embroidery machine! I am so close to owning my Duetta I can hardly stand it!  Aren’t you excited for me? No, I don’t really need it. I want it! So I’ve saved up for a year now and taadaa!

My Step-Dad had his first day of physical therapy today after having his hip pinned. We’re hopeful he won’t have to have the entire ball replaced. His dementia has worsened due to the meds and the trauma so it has been a difficult time. Thank you all for the prayers and support. Mom is having a hard time but is still holding out hope.

I’m going to push to move my quilting machine into the apartment over the garage. It would give me so much more room to sew and when it’s time to quilt it will be easier to load them and quilt them. Seriously, I won’t move into the apartment! I’ll keep my sewing machines here in the quilt room and that would be a “studio“. YEAH! That’s it! The family doesn’t think they will never see me again.

?

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