Friday, October 19, 2012

Lola Update 10/18/12

Lola - October 7, 2012
Lola - October 12, 2012
I'm sorry to say that I think Lola had a minor stroke on Sunday night or Monday. She is recovering somewhat, but she isn't in terrific shape. She is in her chair in the living room, and that's where she's been since I got here there on Monday.

She has been very diminished this whole week. She has no paralysis, but is extremely weak. She could barely make it to the bathroom and the chair on Tuesday. At the time I couldn't tell whether it was the usual fugue or anything more. However, she slept most of Monday, which isn't unusual, but when I finally got her up and to the chair on Tuesday, she went right back to sleep.

Lola - October 18, 2012 
Getting her to wake up long enough to eat Monday was a lost cause. I finally got her awake on Tuesday to eat, but she had lost the ability to use utensils and went at her food with her hands mostly. This was bad because I had cooked split pea soup, which we both like (pppffft to all you who hate pea soup), and at that point I didn't realize how compromised she was.

I started to realize how bad off she was and stood back and watched while she tried to eat. She was missing the soup bowl with the spoon and not even realizing it. She turned the plate with her meat and bread on it over on her lap and was totally unaware of it. I got that cleaned up and thought she might be able to handle pudding. I gave it to her, went to clean the kitchen up, and came back. She'd had her fingers in the pudding, smeared it all over her and wasn't aware of it.

She began to recover somewhat on Wednesday, and could feed herself again. However, getting her up and to the bathroom was a no-go. Oy. She slept an awful lot, and has had trouble staying sitting up in her chair. I've had to keep her reclined because I fear she's going to slip right out of it. Julia came by to see how she was doing, and this was the first time that mother couldn't name Julia. She recognized her, but couldn't come up with Julia's name.

Lola didn't want to wake up today, but I finally goaded her into it, and she spent from about 3 to 10 watching TV. I got her bathed, cleaned, and in fresh jammies, and got a good meal down her. She wanted to go to sleep about 10:00 p.m. which is quite unlike her. She had the strength to use the walker to stand while I changed her clothes and bathed her, thank heavens. However, making her way to her bed is beyond her.

I'm divided about whether or not to get her to her bed, but leaning more to simply keeping her in the chair. In her bed I could manage bathing and changing diapers with sheets and rolling techniques. However, I think she's reached the stage that once she hits that bed, she will never get up from up.

The chair is leather, and it's one for the elderly that rises to assist in standing up and also reclines with feet raised. The leather is easy to clean, and the standing assist is fantastic for as long as it's an option. In her chair, she can be raised to sitting - which allows her to engage and watch TV and pushes her to continue.  Also, I can get to her from all sides in the chair.

If she goes to a bed, I think it would have to be a hospital bed. So I'd have to rent a bed. But she'd be out of daily life. I'd have to take a TV in there, but being in bed encourages disengaging from life I feel.

The main members of the family and I have discussed what to do, and we are all agreed that with her expressed wishes, we are to let things happen as they will. There is no need to take her to a hospital to have an MRI which would confirm or not a cerebral event. There is nothing to be done if there was - she's 91, frail, and failing. It's not like rehabilitation is a viable option, so it really doesn't matter whether or not we know what has happened.

If she was mentally competent - thinking and happily engaged with daily events - it would be a different story. However, she hasn't been able to remember since last November that her husband is dead. I haven't been able to talk her into even stepping foot on the front porch, much less sitting outside, in over two years. She has not been aware of her bodily functions, and hasn't even expressed a desire to be changed from urine-soaked adult incontinence underwear in over 6 months.

There's not much else to say.

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