A lifelong friend and me

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Palerider, May 19, 2019.

  1. Palerider

    Palerider Registered User

    Aug 9, 2015
    944
    Male
    North West
    Back to ironing shirts and trousers getting ready. Can't find my work stuff but I think I left it at work when I had to leave the night I got the call about mum. I hope someone has put it in a safe place as my stethoscope alone is worth a few bob.
     
  2. Palerider

    Palerider Registered User

    Aug 9, 2015
    944
    Male
    North West
    Just to say thanks everyone. I will still be commuting for a while so I will stop half way and treat myself to a cappucino before driving on @DesperateofDevon and @Toony Oony . It's very busy, but this is now the state of our NHS and its not even mid-winter yet. Back to being a professional -a very different world to this one, I will make sure I take my own experiences with me and use them wisely.

    Went to see mum today, she is settling down now and I'm informed the sundowning isn't as bad. She was happy to see me and gave me a big kiss even though she thought I was grandad and she sat with me and talked and then got very tired as it was just after lunch, I told her it was time for me to go to work and she was happy knowing I would be back soon.

    Its time to move on and as I have said before, we have to keep going whatever comes. Its hard but this is now the new world mum and I live in. Waiting for mums SW case worker to contact me to organise the review and long term care, which is due next week I think
     
  3. Woohoo

    Woohoo Registered User

    Apr 30, 2019
    380
    Female
    South East
    I do hope they have , I found one when clearing out dad’s bits a few weeks ago. It is a new path you tread, with maybe some bumps along the way but you seem on course to navigate it just fine. Hope you get a good nights sleep in preparation for a busy shift .
     
  4. Jaded'n'faded

    Jaded'n'faded Registered User

    Jan 23, 2019
    520
    Female
    High Peak
    OK, I'm curious: how much is a stethoscope?

    I can see you there in your scrubs, stethoscope round your neck, running round the department fixing people, with the Holby City music in the background... :D

    Seriously @Palerider , you are a hero. Hope it goes well tomorrow :)
     
  5. DesperateofDevon

    DesperateofDevon Registered User

    Jul 7, 2019
    1,821
    Good luck for tomorrow- with or without stethoscope!
    X
     
  6. Sarasa

    Sarasa Registered User

    Apr 13, 2018
    610
    Good luck, enjoy the coffee on the way there (or back) and hope your stethoscope etc are where you left them.
     
  7. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Hi Palerider
    I hope all goes well for you at work today. It will be good to have something else to focus on.
     
  8. Woohoo

    Woohoo Registered User

    Apr 30, 2019
    380
    Female
    South East
    Hi @Palerider , hope you and mum are doing OK, thinking of you both .
     
  9. Palerider

    Palerider Registered User

    Aug 9, 2015
    944
    Male
    North West
    Well three long days of work have passed and it's late, got home just after 11pm. First day was difficult, knowing that I was consciously moving on with my own life, but by today it hasn't been too bad and I can relax at work and not have the overhwelming anxiety I had of worrying about poor mum home alone all day long and struggling to cope. One of my medical colleagues was quite direct and said the constant worry and stress was making me ill and it was obvious to onlookers -I was surprised at her directness, but she was right I had a serious cardiac event back at the start of summer all stress related and my newly appointed cardiologist warned me that things had to change, although I would have carried on despite that. The turning point wasn't about me in the end, it was the changes in mum and the fact that I just couldn't let her be alone anymore, she had gone past the point of being able to be alone and left to her own devices all day long.

    Most of my thinking has happened while commuting and the odd leaping thought as I work through the day. Do I still feel guilty -oh yes, I think a part of me always will, but only because despite mums decline she managed to cling on to the familiar connection with me and the emotion tied to that connection and vice-versa, which even now though vague for her remains for the time being. The day will come of course, when that last binding thin strand breaks and it will be diminished to beyond the point or recognition for both of us. For mum the receeding emotional familiarity she has with me, and for me a person who I still physically see, but has become lost in another world.

    Colleagues mean well and come out with comments 'well she's safe now' and 'now you don't have to worry' and various other similar lines. But while they mean well, they fail to see another side to this (the bit that matters most), they forget this isn't just a problem that needed managing, this wasn't about 'dementia', this was my mum who I am loosing to dementia and who I put into a CH -an experience and viewpoint some just can't seem to grasp. But its ok, I don't expect them to, but one day they might as their own futures unfold
     
  10. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,850
    Kent
    People just do not know what to say but feel they need to say something.
     
  11. Sarasa

    Sarasa Registered User

    Apr 13, 2018
    610
    @Palerider , I agree with what @Grannie G just said, people are trying to be sympathetic but aren’t quite sure what to say.I find it hard too, specially having to be what seems so hard hearted to keep my mum safe.
    Glad you are slowly navigating your your into this new stage of life, just be kind to yourself.
    Hope your stethoscope etc were safe when you got to work.
     
  12. Palerider

    Palerider Registered User

    Aug 9, 2015
    944
    Male
    North West
    Thanks @Grannie G and @Sarasa . I know they were probably unsure of what to say, I wasn't having a dig at that. Some close colleagues sat next to me as we worked and they were very quite for a while until I had to break the ice and said 'its ok I'm still me and I don't bite yet!!' after which they stopped freezing and we chatted for the time we had. Its not an obvious thing, people go to the default notion they have in their head without thinking and pass comment. There is no point in correcting those ideas, because to them they are meaningful, although to me I would rather change the subject -if you see what I mean

    I visited mum today and after a few days of no visits she is very different now. She recognised me but was more interested in chatting to her housemates than me. But other than that she was fine and obliviously happy in her new little world.

    I said I would take her out tomorrow, but she seemed more concerned about staying 'home' before wandering off and not returning. After waiting for 10 mins I left. I'll see tomorrow how she is and if she wants to go out for cake and coffee we will if not then we won't.
     
  13. Palerider

    Palerider Registered User

    Aug 9, 2015
    944
    Male
    North West
    Just catching up finally on my thread after a quick post on Friday and yesterday.

    Thanks everyone for your support @Pete1 @Sarasa @Woohoo @DesperateofDevon @anxious annie @Jaded'n'faded @Izzy and of course @Grannie G and anyone else I have missed as I can't scroll back and write at the same time.

    I found my stethoscope at work in my bag which had been kept safe, so that was a relief. And for your information @Jaded'n'faded it cost £140 :eek:. I'm not sure about the Holby City bit though ...

    I did stop for a cappucino on the way and thought that was a good move :D despite the dark and grey sky and damp weather -not exactly the best of days to return to work.

    Going back to work was the right thing to do and has helped me move forward, a distraction from home and from mum. I was shocked when I saw her yesterday, she has changed again and does seem to be settling but not the concept we have in our heads of someone sitting down and watching TV and having meaningful conversation with their new housemates. Far from it, but deep down I knew this would be the reality and I am beginning to accept it. She is not distressed, seems comfortable and even relaxed at times. I keep an eye on her wellbeing and how she looks and her room, and of course her bloody spectacles - there's not much else I can do now.

    I am going on the work Christmas night out, this will be the first time in two years, and I am dreading it because they all drink like a fish :eek: -I can foresee a long night ahead on that one, I am assured a bed for the night at Emma's, though last time we got inebriated we had some difficulty finding a taxi and ended up with her very grumpy and tired hubby picking us up at 4 in the morning -Ooops
     
  14. Woohoo

    Woohoo Registered User

    Apr 30, 2019
    380
    Female
    South East
    So pleased your stethoscope was safe :) , also pleased to hear you have settled straight back in at work and that mum has too. It must be tinged with sadness for you . Life is ever changing like the tides you kind of get swept along with it . It’s right you carry on with life, whilst missing mum you need normality and routine . Enjoy the xmas do, sure Emma’s hubby be ok for another life home at 4am :cool: . Take care @Palerider .
     
  15. DesperateofDevon

    DesperateofDevon Registered User

    Jul 7, 2019
    1,821
    hope you get to try the seasonal coffee specials on a daily basis, glad that the stethoscope turned up!
    please tell me it was a Gladstone bag....? I love the thought of the old black bags the Doctor used to open during my childhood .

    works do.... ah medical staff works do are a thing of urban legends & myths! Think you need to let your hair down & dance the night away ( I find pretending no one can see me when I’m dancing helps!)
    Uber not too fussy usually- shame no Uber near me!
    The reality of care & the lifestyle in a home is scary but inevitable sadly.
    ((((((Hugs)))))))
     
  16. Palerider

    Palerider Registered User

    Aug 9, 2015
    944
    Male
    North West
    Thanks @DesperateofDevon and @Woohoo I don't have such a bag lol. But I do have a modern day brown leather one, which seems to acquire alot of c**p.

    I went to see mum yesterday afternoon and I was later than usual and as I arrived she had been wandering in other peoples rooms. The care workers tried to stop her and apparently there was an altercation with her walking stick. I spoke with the senior care worker who was trying to reason out the best way of managing mums sundowning behaviour, as she only gets agitated like this when she sundowns. They had locked the other residents rooms to prevent her from going in them.

    One option was to give her a zimmer frame rather than a walking stick, but I said no to that, because firstly she won't use it and secondly its even worse than a walking stick if she does get agitated. I suggested they remove her walking stick at the time of the day she begins to sundown and return it to her when she has settled -which was seen as a good plan by the care worker.

    The second option that I don't disagree with was to speak with the MHT and see if they will consider something to calm her as she sundowns. I think a small sedative at that time of the day will help her as she wears herself out pacing (as she did at home) and would ease her distress as well as helping the other residents have a more peaceful end to the day. I have been clear though, that any sedative is only to be used for the period she sundowns and must not be used as a chemical restraint.

    I'm going to see mum this afternoon and may take her out if she feels like it, though with the wet weather she may say no. I'll also have a catch up with the care worker

    I
     
  17. Palerider

    Palerider Registered User

    Aug 9, 2015
    944
    Male
    North West
    Just back from my visit. Mum was in a much better mood today and her walking stick has been removed, which I am happy with as she manages without it and it saves going down the meds route, which should be avoided if possible.

    I took her out for a drive and we stopped for coffee and cake and as we walked in she said 'I have missed you Simon' -my eyes welled up and suddenly I felt terrible. Anyway I got her to a table and went to buy the cake and coffee and dried my eyes standing in the qeue. Cake with a splodge of cream and a capuccino helped move us both on and mum enjoyed it. Went the scenic route back to the CH and mum was fine going back. I stayed for a while and we chatted about all kinds of stuff, most of which I wasn't certain of, and we spotted one of the homes rabbits which put a smile on mums face. I left her as content as she could be and said that I would be back soon.

    Work tomorrow .....
     
  18. anxious annie

    anxious annie Registered User

    Jan 2, 2019
    180
    Glad that your mum was in a better mood today, and you both enjoyed the coffee and cake. I expect there will be more of these "ups and downs" along the way, hopefully she will have more of the good times in her new home and you will be able to spend these with her. Enjoy your works Christmas night out, you'll be able to have a good time, especially now you know your mum will be looked after.
     
  19. DesperateofDevon

    DesperateofDevon Registered User

    Jul 7, 2019
    1,821
    Bless you, it’s lovely though that she recognised you though! Dad asked on Saturday who I was, followed by is that cha ( my husband ) your father?


    um .... no you are Dad; clue in the word there ....Dad!
     
  20. TNJJ

    TNJJ Registered User

    May 7, 2019
    769
    Female
    cornwall
    :)
     

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