Monday Memories With My Mom

The Adventures of Caring for a Mom With Alzheimer's Disease
     Taking time out for a quick update... 
     First, how about some nice lovely things -- like my BFF sending my mom a card letting her know she's thinking of her!  When I arrived to visit last week she was holding the card and reading and re-reading it as she does.  Nancy has been a close friend since I was in like, 3rd grade!!??  My mom loves "Little Nancy" as she calls her!  Thanks!

     I also felt it was only fitting that I shared part of my Fall giveaway winnings from Yaya over at Whispering Pines.  So, I found a nice little spot for this cute little pumpkin at my mom's apartment.  A nice reminder of Fall from a super nice lady!!

     Then, here is a picture of my mom after her fall a week ago and then Day 4, last Thursday.  The good news is, the x-ray shows no break in her nose and no facial fractures.  That's a relief, since I was originally told the doctor on staff thought it was broken. 

     While visiting, I also learned that my mom is not "staying" in the dining room.  Apparently, she picks at and eats a bit of her salad and then makes a run for it...leaving the dining room.  When the staff picked her up for lunch, I spied from my lookout and, sure enough, they were right.  She tried to leave.  They redirected her back to the table.  I then came down and had a talk with my mom.  Got her legs turned in facing the table and told her to eat some of the corned beef and cabbage that was also part of the meal that day.  She did, reluctantly, eat a few more things.  I talked to the staff a bit about it, asked that they make sure she sits facing her food, etc.  Much like a kid, sometimes saying things like "no juice unless you eat your meat" sometimes works.  However, I can see their frustration as she was not terribly cooperative with me either that day.
    Today, I received a call indicating that my mom would not cooperate with staff trying to dress her and take her to breakfast.  They told me some of the tactics they were using, including using my name.  Unfortunately, it is not their job to "make" my mom do anything!

     So, tonight is the night I am off to spend the night at my mom's apartment.  I wish I could say I'm looking forward to it.  I'm not.  My goal is to again (as I was in June) be as much of a "fly on the wall" as I can.  See what my mom is up to, if she goes to dinner, where and when she sleeps, if and when she gets her medication, etc...  I also hope to work with the staff on getting her redirected into her routine.  I tried to talk to her about it on the phone today.  She was a bit defiant and, of course, denies her lack of cooperation.  I know that there really is no "reasoning" with my mom.  Logic does not work.  I will need to be creative and use my best psychology.  In the process, I hope to see exactly how the staff is going about prompting my mom for her care and escorts. 
     She is such a light sleeper, so I will have to be quiet!!  No Wi-Fi at my moms...bringing lots of reading and perhaps will post a few pics on Instagram!  Wish me luck!!!

Bought my mom this pillow in hopes of deterring her from slouching so badly on the couch.  Time will tell if it helps or not.


Kim said...

Soooo much in common. Yes, I need to ensure that Moms legs are both in front of the chair. And the chair needs to be pushed in as far as it will go without squishing her. And when Mom gets a little stubborn with Auntie or the day care staff, they always say they are going to get Kim to come home. That usually does the trick. Maybe I'm scarier than you :).
Hang in there and good luck tonight.

Julia said...

It looks like a tough job caring for an Alzheimer parent.

I'm glad that your mom didn't had anything broken after that fall. She could have been hurt badly. I hope that the big pillow helps her sit straighter.

My neighbour friend had Alzheimer and she would forget how to open the door to get in her house, she couldn't communicate anymore but I took her to church with me to a meeting just so her husband could have a little time to himself and she remembered her prayers and recited them aloud with the best of us. For some it's old songs they remember when they were younger. They sing along.
It's hard to reach them sometimes.

I hope that your mom will be on her best behaviour for you.


yaya said...

Good luck with your Mom and her care. So hard on you. I was tickled to see the pumpkin! I hope she enjoys it! Good news about her nose too. She's really did a number on herself. Hope she heals quickly.

Arlene - Caregiver ordinaire said...

You have done a fabulous job with your Mom.... It's really hard to get them to eat when they don't want to - or do anything!! That's really hard; sometimes we went through periods where we had to do some little 'snacks' instead of a full meal. Momma would get stressed if there was too much food on her plate. So we'd put a little and refill and that worked well for a while. I'm trying to think of a way that you might be able to get that to work for you.... Maybe some zippy bags with little snacks in her apartment?

Oh, my heart hurts when I see how bruised Mom's get when they fall. I'm so glad that she wasn't hurt worse than the bruises! The call is always so stressful for you too.

Please know you are never far from my thoughts and prayers. Every day is a good day when your Mom still smiles at you and knows a little bit who you are!


Cynthia said...

I just commented on your comment on Arlene's blog momma and me, I didn't realize at the time your mother is in a nursing facility. They ought to have a Geri chair there? No? After reading this post about the dilemmas at the dinner table I can't help but wonder why the staff hasn't tried her with a Geri chair. If you were able to buy or rent one (maybe even a used one) you wouldn't be able to make sure it was used for your mother exclusively, so there's that to keep in mind. Good luck with everything.

RockinMom said...

I am happy to hear your mothers nose was not broken. I do not have any great words of wisdom or advice as I h ab e never been in your situation. I can offer my support and prayers though.