Sunday, April 29, 2007

Mom was really angry about the visit from the home healthcare nurse on Friday. She threatened to move out or move back to her old house. But according to the nurse, this is typical. A worker is coming on Friday from 8:30 to 11:30 AM. Then we have the neurology appointment at 1:00 pm. I'm not looking forward to that appointment at all. First of all, it's in Minneapolis and Mom is not very mobile right now. I don't know what happened but she's struggling to walk. I've got her using the walker but she forgets to use it so I have to remind her. She is also aware that she is not herself. Today we had a lot of tears about that. She also was aware of everything that I do for her. I have to try to let her do more for herself. She is not happy about being by herself when I go to work. My therapist keeps reminding me that there is a lesson to be learned in this. I think this is teaching me responsibility and maturity. Life sucks.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Mom was hallucinating yesterday. She was certain that someone was downstairs. At bedtime, she was certain that someone was lying next to her and they got up and left. But she couldn't tell me who it was or what they looked like. I've called a home assistance agency. A nurse is coming out on Friday for a free consultation. They have a 3 hour/2 days a week minimum. That might be a good start for Mom. The aide can take her swimming, help her bathe, etc. It will take some of the pressure and worry off of me. But Mom will fight it tooth and nail. She will be mad at me. Why can't this horrible disease make it easier on the caregiver? Next week is the appointment with the neurologist. I'm dreading it because I know Mom will pitch a fit. God I hate this disease, dementia.

With hindsight I now know that Mom knew she was having memory problems. She had numerous post-it notes throughout her home, she would mark the days off on her calendar and she had other reminders in her home.

Study has found that fish oil can prevent Alzheimer's and possibly even stop its progression...

My therapist thinks we 3 kids should take turns having Mom live with us. Hah.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

When Aunt ME and Uncle visited in 2003 they commented that Mom seemed to have memory problems. This upset me so much. Mom seems to have progressed rather quickly as has ME. I wonder why they both have memory issues? Grandma didn't, but Grandpa did. Don't know if anyone else in Grandpa's family did.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

We had a good weekend. Weather was fabulous, 60s and sunny. Mom even was mostly with it this weekend. I think the Celexa is helping her, she is a lot less tearful, irritable and moody, at least for this week. Her appetite has improved as well, and she is interested in eating fruits and vegetables. I put a bowl of fruit on the dining room table hoping this will tempt her during the day to eat fruit.

Not much else to report for this weekend.

Friday, April 13, 2007

My therapist has a theory, which is probably right, about why Mom gets so upset about not being able to eat her noonday meal; she thinks it's because Mom was forced to eat everything on her plate as a child and if she didn't she was 'bad'. Anyway, I canceled the noon day meal delivery. And last night Mom ate 3 slices of pizza and today her appetite seems to be back. My therapist also suggested that I fax the Neuro clinic the health care PofT and then ask if Mom has a diagnosis from them. If she does not, then the therapist said we should proceed with the neuropsych testing so that we can get a probable diagnosis. If she does have ALZ (which she most likely does) then that will make various services available for her.

It was sunny today and in the mid 50s. It was nice to be outside. On the way home I saw 2 deer in the woods at the entrance into our subdivision. They were grazing.

Tonight we watched the movie "Flightplan" with Jodie Foster. It was really good and suspenseful. Even Mom stayed to watch the whole thing and seemed to follow the plot.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Snow today, but not enough to stick to roads and sidewalks. They are saying we should have upper 50s by Sunday. Can't happen soon enough for me.

Mom has not eaten her delivered meal for the last 3 days. Today, though, she remembered to put it in the freezer so we could heat it up for dinner. She was tearful about it, insisting that it is just too much food and she can't eat it all. She asked if we could stop having it delivered so I will call to cancel it tomorrow. I have since upped her citalopram to the full 20 mgs. I don't think that the AD and the loss of appetite are related because all I have to do is mention ice cream and she wants to eat. I hate this.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

We are supposed to get heavy, wet snow tonight through tomorrow morning. The current forecast is for 4 inches.

Mom did not eat her meal at lunch today or yesterday. She left it on the dining room table, not remembering that she needed to refrigerate it. By the time I got home it had been out for 5 hours and needed to be tossed. She didn't really eat much for dinner either tonight and probably would have had nothing if I hadn't asked her to please eat something. Don't know where her appetite is lately. And she gets so upset when presented with food. She'll get teary and tell me that she feels bloated. I think this is a phase of the dementia as I've heard others describe this behavior.

I bought a cool angel for our garden from Target. It's solar powered with a lighted flower. Mom really liked it.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Easter is over and we did nothing. I suggested a church service but Mom nixed it. She doesn't eat much so brunch was a waste of money. So it was an unthrilling time. At least the sun was out though. We watched Everybody Loves Raymond all day. Tried to watch Scoop but Mom started crying and said she was bored so I put Raymond back on.

Think I will try to volunteer at the day program. Perhaps if Mom does that with me she might like to do it on her own. I don't know anymore. I'm tired of trying to figure out ways for her to do things. I need to up the citalopram soon. Her moods are a little more even but not quite there.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

It's after midnight and Mom just screamed down "Is anyone here?" while banging her cane on the floor. She was cranky and went back to bed but seems to be restless now. Meanwhile, the stupid neurology clinic called this afternoon with a cancellation tomorrow, did we want it? I called them back unbeknownst to Mom and requested that they call me with such things at work but no, I have to have an signed act of congress to get them to do that. So tomorrow I need to fax them something that says they need to call my cell phone for appointment reminders, etc. Sometimes HIPAA really sucks.

The thing I miss most about my Mom is the fact that I've lost my last confidante. Before her it was Dad and I lost him too. Soon there will be no one. I worry about what it will be like when Mom is gone and I am alone. In many ways she is already gone to me as she doesn't really offer advice or support anymore and I can no longer tell her everything. Keeping things from Mom is one of the hardest things that I have ever done. But it's a necessity in many ways. Now I need to grow some armor to shield myself from her anger and tantrums when I have to force things upon her. That too is hard.

Monday, April 2, 2007

Things my Mom has done for me:

1. She drove me to every record store in town trying to find a 45 rpm for a new song I heard on the radio and just had to have when I was 13.
2. She sewed clothes for me and eventually taught me to sew.
3. She kept a baby book for me and wrote down milestones in my first seven years of life.
4. She'd comfort me when I was scared and couldn't sleep.
5. She took care of me when I was sick.
6. She'd shop for clothes or shoes with me and would make sure I was well dressed.
7. She drilled me when I needed to learn my multiplication tables.
8. She'd pick me up from and take me to school.
9. She loves me unconditionally
10. She made me feel that I could be anything I wanted to be
11. She drove down in a rainstorm to be with me when my kitty died and when I lost my job.
12. She comforted me when I was depressed.
13. She's always there when I need a hug or just need to know that someone in this world loves me.
14. She made Christmas magical
15. She read books to me and instilled a love for reading (along with my Dad)

Sunday, April 1, 2007

I bought a new iHome alarm clock for my iPod. It's pretty cool and now I'm using my iPod more often. I tested out the alarm this morning to make sure it works.

Mom had a bad night last night. After dinner she started having diar. This morning when I woke up she had had an accident on the bedroom carpet but she had gone to bed and was still sleeping. Thank God for Nature's Miracle for Cats. It works for Mom accidents too. Today we went to have the oil changed in her car (which by the way is not starting very well in the morning) and we had planned to go to Target but we didn't make it. Last night I gave her a full pill of the Celexa, and she may have been having side effects, so today I gave her half the dosage. Cross your fingers that it helps her. She gets so frustrated by the accidents.

Tonight I hung 2 towel bars in her bathroom, that should help with the towels that she throws all over the floor.