Saturday, May 19, 2012

Lazy Hot Day

A hot Saturday but it's nice and cool in the house so yes I'm staying inside. Did I mention I hate summer time? ;-)

My mom is sleeping. Once again I've talked to the doctor (I think he's going to disown me as a patient or a caregiver) about my mom's meds. I truly don't like how the anti-psychotics affect her, any of them, but I do want something to calm her down when she's really upset. They prescribed a med just for that and it's to take as needed. A couple of days ago she thought someone was coming to kill her and we should call the police and then she didn't eat her food but said she had put something in it to make the people sick and for us not to eat it. We just roll with the flow with these delusions. I just don't like to see her upset and it worries me. The next day she usually doesn't remember them but last night she asked if I was her daughter and who was the man she saw in the hall...he was my husband. It was late in the afternoon though so I think it was a bit of the sun-downing effect..

The fingers on my right hand are still numb and the muscles in my arm were jumping. Guess I'll find out Monday what's going on with the nerves in my neck.

Did enjoy most of the season finales. NCIS writers are bat rastards for leaving us to worry about the fate of Ducky lying alone on the beach. Sigh. I think the last scene in NCIS:LA was a set up to get the bad guy. No way would G shoot a man in cold blood, at least not in front of thousands of people watchin it on TV.  I really like The Mentalist but I'm sick of the Red John villain and want him gone, gone, gone. Thought it was funny that Hawaii 5 0 and Grimm had the heroes end the show with the same word, "Mom". Once Upon A Time was great and we can look forward to all manner of magic in the next season. Person of Interest and CSI were good too. Now for a summer filled with mostly crap but I do enjoy So You Think You Can Dance and The Closer. Since The Closer starts in July and runs six weeks we can then enjoy football that starts in August!

That's about all for today. Hopefully Ill have something to write about my nerve problem in a few days.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

A Quandary

MRI revealed that I have cervical spine stenosis (stenosis meaning a narrowing) with nerve encroachment. Have to make an appointment with a neurosurgeon to get his opinion (I'll tell you right now no surgery for me unless it's a last resort issue which it isn't right now) for the best course of treatment. My symptoms are what I wrote about before so I"m thinking it'll be physical therapy or a watch and see what happens kind of thing. I'm just wondering if I'll be on the gabapentin for a long time and what will happen if I go off of will some pain come back. Tis a quandary for sure.
Mom is still not taking to well to the home health aide but I must admit I like having her here and having a few hours a week where I don't have to worry about taking care of my mom. Still some guilt about that but if I want to be healthy and take good care of her I have to take care of myself and this requires some time to myself. With a few health issues of my own that I have to attend to this is important. After reading countless articles on the Internet about taking care of an ageing parent with dementia (or just an ageing parent) I learned that care giver burnout is a huge issue that thousands are dealing with. Somehow it just makes me feel better to  know I'm not alone on this issue. There are rewards though. I find that my mom is a funny lady and there are more fun and happy moments then there are low disturbing ones. I wonder sometimes about my grandchildren's generation and what will happen to them since some studies have shown that they will live shorter lives than their parents. What will become of them?

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Quick Sunday Update

I know I'm putting some personal information on this blog but I'm hoping that if someone is experiencing the same thing that some of what they may read here might help them as they assist their loved one in coping with this scourge.
First week with a comfort care lady and it's so so. Mom does not seem to care for some stranger talking to her and she won't let her wash her hair or help her in the shower. And mom is talking to herself again even when someone else is in the room with her.  She had been doing that at the dances she went to but I did not find that out until she stopped going to them. One of the ladies who missed her coming called and told me about it. The doctor doesn't like to keep her on the dementia meds for long periods (other than aracept...which I don't think is working anymore) so things may or may not get dicey again. Guess we'll have to wait and see. TV seems to be a puzzle to her too and she does not read much anymore. Just a few headlines here and there. I put the Lady Horns softball game on today and while she seemed interested at first she dismissed the game and went to sleep. I guess as long as she is talking to herself she is entertained and in a world she can control. I can't imagine what's going on in her once sharp as a tack mind. I've been told by many that watching a loved one with dementia is harder for us to watch than it is for them to experience but I'm not so sure of that information. My mom knows something is wrong with her but she's just not sure what it is.
Tomorrow I have to get an MRI and long ago when I took one I found I was a wee bit claustrophobic towards the end of the test. I hope they drug me up or I might freak out this time. Stupid pinched nerve, it's more trouble than anything I've had in a long while. Bah.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

A First For Us

Today a home health aide is coming in for the first time. She will be here for hygiene, company, respite care, etc. Hopefully mom will accept the care and not be freaked out by a stranger coming into the house to help care for her. She'll come for four hours a day, two days a week if all works out. Keep your fingers crossed for us that all will go well. I really need the help to get over the pinched nerve thing and to take care of myself. I have cardio-vascular disease, moderate, am pre-diabetic, and it takes some doing on my part to beat these diseases back and keep them at bay. Poor mom, she's had to suffer indignities this past week with her constipation problems that resulted in a mild impaction landing her in the ER where she had to wait 4 hours for treatment. I believe this problem might have been avoided had I known what signs to look for and how to treat it. We did call the doctor's office and get advice but I think by then the problem had progressed to the point where immediate professional help was necessary. I've had to do things for my parent that I never thought I'd have to do and it's certainly been a learning experience for me, well it has been one for all of us here at home. I guess girls do take care of moms and boys take care of dads which is good because there are things only a daughter or woman can do for a mom and I'm sure that only men can take care of some things for sons and dads.
Speaking of my pinched nerve. I'm coming off of my second round of prednisone therapy and I feel like a puffer fish and look like a chipmunk with his cheeks full of nuts. I was told that the swelling will go down now that I'm finished with the pills. I hope so. I worked to get my weight down and now I've gained 8 pounds since I've been on those pills. Weight, so easy to put on so hard to take off! Well the puffiness takes away the wrinkles. ;-)