Sasha and Evangeline helped me take my parents to Mass on Sunday.
(I love you girls soooo much.) Can you see my dad's bruises from his
most recent fall?
Thank you all for your comments and emails after my last post. You are all helpful and/or funny and/or comforting. Several of you reminded me not to be too hard on myself. Honestly, I don't think I was being particularly hard on myself. I really don't think it's okay to say harsh things to someone who has a devastating and incurable brain disorder. And my display of hysterical sobbing was clearly an over-reaction and was upsetting for my father, mostly. My father should not be upset. He is the quiet hero in this whole scenario.
Having said all that, I also recognize that family dynamics will always play a role here. My mother's temper and her refusal to listen to reason are a traditional source of difficulty for me. So, it's understandable that this situation would push my buttons.
Here's the really funny thing:
My mother was right. The nurses were fucking up her medication.
She takes eye drops for glaucoma and some other old person geezer eye thing, one set of drops in the morning and one set of drops at night. Except as far as I can tell she didn't get her drops but maybe once in the first 10 days. So, FAIL.
After consultations with my sibs, all medication has been turned back over to her and you cannot believe how happy she is now. For one thing, she TRIUMPHED. The despots at the nursing station can kiss her withered ass! Also, she feels like she has regained some of the control over her own life. I am beginning to understand how important this is for both of my parents.
I set up a little "system" for her, and I have no idea if it will work or not.
One of my mother's most endearing characteristics is that she thinks everything her children do is pure genius. My little medicine layout completely blew her mind.
"Mary L.! [my family calls me Mary L] This must have taken you HOURS! I have never seen anything like this! You need to tell Josh to come over here and take a picture! [She thinks that Josh is the only one who has the special knowledge needed to push the button on the camera.] And you need to send it in to a medical magazine! The doctors need to know about this! This is a good way for people to remember their medicine!"
And I'm laughing and saying, "Ma! Honestly!"
And she's saying adamantly, "Mary L! I'm serious! You must submit this to the Journal of the American Medical Association!"
How funny is that?
I made her this check off chart too, which I think will not work for her. Too confusing, too busy. But Nathanial (Emma's beau) suggested last night that I do a separate strip for each medication so she doesn't have to deal with a whole chart. We'll see.
This was her old system back at the house. How funny is that? The
only reason it worked is that my nephew had alarms set for every pill
time and would stand over her until she took it.
Oh, and I know one of you is going to suggest one of those pill box
thingies. We've tried that before and she didn't go for it. She really
wants to deal directly with the labeled bottle of medication rather than
plain, unmarked pills. Which, when you think about it, makes sense.
So anyway, all is well here in Elder Care Land. I have put Mr. Suffocation Pillow back in the closet.
Wait, is that an example of inappropriate humor?