IF YOU NEVER MET AN ANGEL, MEET MINE – Part Two
II am now home but still taking therapy two days a week. My new left knee is doing great and I have now played three rounds of Par 3, 18 holes. Having a left leg that does not bend when you swing is making golf fun again. Caring for my Angel makes my play dependent on someone to care for her.
Hospice has taken over her necessary healthcare issues and this will permit me to keep her at our home as long as I can care for her other vital needs. I will try to explain with actual events. One of the major problems I was having when I ask Hospice for help was bathing. Strange as it may seem the Hospice Nurse told me this was a major problem with elderly people, especially females. I was concerned that it might have been fear of remembering that a hot shower might scald her. Regardless scalding water can be dangerous. Hospice comes every Monday, Wednesday and Friday to help her with her showers.
There is no doubt that anyone with memory factors can be seriously injured if what might happen, happens. Misuse of sharp knives can be injurious to someone who might not know what a butcher knife is for. I can only imagine how much damage and pain could happen if you put a can of anything in the microwave and it exploded? Some things like the thermostats and the stoves I have asked her to avoid successfully. On other things I have made signs to place asking or warning her to avoid and so far it works.
After I asked her to take the dog out after dark one night she got lost in a neighborhood we have lived in for 27 years. It took me 30 minutes to find them, scared beyond belief. Simple things you would never expect anyone to forget, they forget. She has me select what she needs to wear the next day. I have cooked every meal we have had for the last 25 years so I am well aware what she likes to eat. She never ate snacks between meals but she forgot and she has gained 15 pounds in the last year.
Often my Angel forgets that she has slept in pajamas all of her life. She probably has 20 pair of pajamas in her closet. She usually goes to bed about 8 or 8:30 and I tell her every night to put on her pajamas. At least 4 nights a week she will be sound asleep in her clothes and even her bra. Unless I go make her change she appears comfortable sleeping in her clothing.
I have a twofold reason for creating this record. One for others to use should they ever need to as safety aware as necessary. Two, hopefully share with me things I need to be aware of from now on. Hospice has fulfilled my lack of knowledge with a single number I can call 24/7 and get immediate instructions on what to do next.
In addition A Hospice Nurse comes every Monday to take her vital signs and ask pertinent questions and make suggestions based on the stage of the Dementia. I was somewhat surprised that Hospice is available based on medical examinations but should you know or not that severe memory loss is incurable 100% of the time.
Please share your experiences with me and I will continue to keep this dialog open as long as I don’t croak. C Brewer March 2