Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Joe's and Lola's Behavior

Here's a little more information about Joe. Firstly I later learned that when he had his episode at Parkview on Friday and they sent him to the hospital, they did not want to take him back. Although they offered to "save his bed," in reality they knew the situation and knew I couldn't pay them $269 a day to hold his bed. They had already placed somewhere in records that he was undesirable to them. It was easy to give lip service to something they didn't think would happen. In other homes and with easy patients there's an ability to handle things without demanding you must pay me this amount of money now.

Parkview didn't want Joe because he argued with other other patients. He hit caretakers sometimes. They weren't equipped to care for escape artists. Although some workers said he was beginning to adjust, he was more than most could handle.

On Friday in the hospital when some of the caretakers were doing procedures, he hit them. Later in his room, he was biddable, and "a nice, sweet old man." So most reports on him suggested Medco could handle him.

Medco accepted Dad not realizing what a handful he was. Their facility was not a locked door facility. They had to put 1 person dedicated to him, and they're not set up to work that way. Joe was intent on going home. Every time he thought he wasn't being watched he headed for the door. Where he thought he was going is a guess; it was just home. He didn't know where he was, but if he got out he could go home. How he thought he was getting home was inconsequential. In a little over 15 hours they called to say he had to go.

Surprisingly, after he had his stroke on Friday once he recovered by Monday, he was more stable and more mobile than before he had it. You'd almost swear the stroke fixed something from whatever happened two weeks prior. The Medco people worked hours yesterday trying to find a facility for Joe to go to because they honestly felt he could not be sent home with one caretaker caring for two elderly people.

On Mother's side of the fence, she's doing weird things lately. For some reason she started sitting half-full Styrofoam cups of water in the Kleenex box. When I chided her about it, she started shredding them in the wastebasket. Foam cups are easy to use in a situation like this - smaller for unstable hands to hold, firmer than plastic cups, not breakable like small juice glasses.

Her shredding them is a PITA because they can be rinsed and dried quickly. They cost money, and getting optimal usage out of them is, well, optimal. She's also taken to throwing away the little pill containers one of the sitters brought us. I think they're sauce cups like a restaurant uses. Convenient. Black, which makes it easy for elders to see if all the pills have been taken. If she'll quit throwing them away, I have enough to last.

She's been on a kick of going through drawers and things to see what's in them. She doesn't have a clue. I'm finding all sorts of stuff out - a book on sex and chronic disease. Really? Huh. I think she goes through things in the middle of the night, and frankly, I don't sleep lightly enough to hear her. I find toothpaste out, scissors out, Efferdent tablets out (even though she hasn't washed her dentures herself in 2 years). She's throwing things out she's kept for years - old photos and letters. She doesn't even know she's done it when I ask her about it.

She's quit wearing her glasses. She forgot that she had to use a magnifying glass in addition to her glasses to read anything. So now she's not even wearing her glasses.

She sucks all the glue out of her bottom dentures in about 15 minutes if not less. Now she's started taking them out when the glue is gone. Her mouth is sinking in. If I reglued them every time she wanted it, she'd eat a tube of denture fixative in 2 days.

She's almost stopped talking. Whenever I ask anything or say anything to her, I have to repeat it. Frequently I have to tell her to answer me, or she will just sit there and look at me.

She can't remember how to nor is capable of changing the channel of the TV by the remote control. But she can turn it down every time I get a call and she wants to listen. I have to go outside if I want to have a private conversation.

That's about all I have the energy to document tonight. I've napped on and off all day today. I've simply taken the day off. I've had a headache and felt groggy all day. Tomorrow I have to be up and at it again - courthouse and visit the new facility, talk to the dietician, take an extra blanket. Don't look forward to the visit.

1 comment:

onwingsofeagles said...

Wow. Some things sound so familiar. My mother stopped wearing her hearing aids because "miraculously" she could hear again. The only problem was that people mumble. Oy. And she stopped watching TV because she forgot how to use the remote. Also the telephone at times, "What's that ringing sound?" It's enough to make a caregiver think she's losing her OWN mind. I wonder if your mom is losing the capacity to have a conversation. Dementia is so cruel, and so not-obvious at times. Hang in there.