Ray and his many health problems

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
skills eroding now

Just the past few weeks i have noticed more changes in Ray. he has trouble deciding how to hold his spoon. he tries to put his foot down while I am wheeling him in the wheelchair. he wipes his nose on the clothes protector when he has a handkerchief in his pocket or tucked down the side of the chair. All little things he would not have done before.

It is like losing someone inch by inch. I try not to be judgemental or even remark on what is happening. I try not to think about it in terms of what he could do before versus what he can do now. But I so want the decline to stop, to plateau and yes, to get better!

I know, it ain't going to happen.

Sue.
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
60,450
Dundee
Oh Sue - I so know what you mean. I'm noticing that Bill is either using the wrong word or making up a word for things sometimes. I see him watch me before he starts eating as I assume he's forgotten where to to start. Lots of little things that tell me things aren't as good as they were. Like you I want it all to go away and for things to be the way thy used to be.

I know we're massively lucky compared to you and many others on TP but these little things keep telling me things are changing.

I'm thinking of you. x
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
another "can we go home now" day

I wish I had a magic wand, or a clock which turned back time. I wish my family would come in and say: "Mum if we help you do you think you could manage Dad living at home again?" because if either of those things happened Ray WOULD be home here with me. Until then I just have to hide the hurt inside when he asks to come home or asks where the car is, or what we are having for dinner.

Another day when he asked to come home, this time just after lunch so he wasn't sundowning. I wish it got easier.

Sue.
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
visiting ban

Ray's NH has been in "lock down mode" since last Monday as they have a lot of residents with a gastric virus so I haven't been able to see him. Mum's facility was locked down from Wednesday so I visited her on Monday but not since. I know it is necessary to prevent the viruses spreading but I miss them both. I have been ringing daily to check on them and to date neither has contracted the virus.

My daughter and her two children came up espescially to see them both and went home yesterday without doing so. I enjoyed their visit very much. In the past while I was looking after Ray and fully focused on him I really didn't have a lot of time to give to the grandchildren, this time it was different.

It rained hard for three out of four days so we were mostly at home but they went to the pictures, played on the Wii, watched videos and yes - they read books! So the company was great and we made new memories.

My daughter got to see both her brothers and their families this time which was an added bonus for the visit. I will go to see them next month as I have commitments I have to keep to this month.

Sue.
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
saw Mum today

I was able to visit with Mum today as her section of the Nursing Home was out of quarantine. Ray's facility is still in lock down. I hope it is open soon as i want to see him with my own eyes. The report from the nurse is brief, they say he has slept and eaten meals and is free of the virus, I want to see he has not lost weight, is a good colour etc.

I really miss him in so many ways, living alone is no fun. At least when Isee him my mind is more at rest.

Sue.
 

jenniferpa

Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
39,448
I'm glad you got to see your mother. How long do they think it will be before you can see Ray? I guess this is a bit "how long is a piece of string" and depends entirely on who falls ill and when.

Lovely that you were able to spend time with the grandchildren even if it was because of illness at the NH.

Take care
 

Nan2seven

Registered User
Apr 11, 2009
2,525
Dorset
Dear Sue,

I'm glad to see that you were able to go and visit your mother again. And glad too that when your daughter visited, you were better able to enjoy her company and that of the grandchildren. I know just what you mean about being focused on Ray - delighted as you are to see them, Ray was at the forefront of your mind while he was with you.

I do hope it won't be long before you are able to visit him again. Brian's home "re-opened" after a week, so perhaps you won't have too long to wait. But it is an anxious time when you are not able to see him at all and have to rely on other people's reports.

Thinking of you and sending love,
Nan XXX
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
able to see Ray again

The nursing home officially re-opened today but a lot of people were there yesterday as we'd been told they were open. The people from Ray's wing were all in one of the dining rooms while a big clean-up took place. The last cleaning jobs were done yesterday afternoon, stripping linen, curtains etc and one last lick over with the disinfectant.

Today the residents had a singalong in the morning and the usual Friday afternoon Bingo this afternoon. All the residents seemed delighted to be out and about again. They cheered at the end of the singalong and even the usual "grumpies" smiled.

Ray was very quiet as I would have expected having had no-one to talk to one-on-one for almost a fortnight. He never is a great conversationalist but usually says something, today it was just a few murmured words as if he had given up talking. I hope that improves. His table mates made up for him by talking non-stop.

Now to get back into routine again.

Sue.
 

Nanak

Registered User
Mar 25, 2010
1,973
60
Brisbane Australia
Hi Sue
I am so glad you were able to see Ray again. You would have missed him. These gastric virus's seem to be rampant all over the world. The hospital in uk my sister worked for regularly shut down for the same reason.
I hope he is able to chat again as he used to. Is he aware what had happened?
Nanak
missing what has gone and scared of what is to come
 

Nan2seven

Registered User
Apr 11, 2009
2,525
Dorset
Hallo, Sue,

I was glad to see that you are now back to visiting Ray again.
Is his speech improving at all?
Has he said more than the murmured few words as on your visit on the 27th April?
Do post and let us know.

Love, Nan XXX
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
droopy days

Like a lot of people with dementia that are in a wheelchair Ray seems to have days when he almost bends forward, sometimes to the extent that he almost bends in half. It is usually only a couple of days and then he straightens up again. Yesterday and today were such days.

Yesterday at lunchtime he was bent so far forward that his nose was almost into his dinner so I finished up feeding him. Today he was sitting at a dangerous angle when I arrived so I managed to get him to sit back against the back of the chair in something resembling an upright position. I am afraid he will fall out and hurt himself.

I know eventually he will be out of the wheelchair and into one of those big padded chairs and will no longer be able to self-propel so I do want to keep him in the wheelchair as long as possible.

Sue.
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
not comprehending today

I went in today very excited to tell Ray we have a new grand daughter Alice Edith, daughter of our younger son Trevor and his wife Edie-lee. I realised as I started speaking to Ray that he wasn't listening to me. The only thing I could think of was that he didn't know who I was speaking about. It is all so sad isn't it?

I know Edie's sister took some photos of the four of them together (Trev, Edie, Lucas and baby Alice) so as soon as I can I will get some of the ones with Trevor and Alice in and see if seeing Trevor with the baby makes it clearer to Ray who I am talking about.

I had a cry on the way home about how it could have been such a joyful occasion if only he had been able to share the happy event with me.

Sue.
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
a bad seizure day

I went in this morning to see Ray still in bed and looking like a decked cod fish, eyes rolling, tongue out. I got a nurse and she said it was a seizure and that he had also had one earlier in the morning. She did apply stimulation to his feet and eventually he came to. It is so scary when he looks like that.

I managed to feed him his lunch but by then he was exhausted and I put him back under the covers for a nap. I came on home and rang tonight and he had recovered somewhat and had eaten most of his evening meal.

I am hoping he will be well tomorrow and back sitting in his wheelchair so I can take him out in the sun, if there is any. Ironically is was a lovely day today and he spent it in bed.

Sue.
 

Nan2seven

Registered User
Apr 11, 2009
2,525
Dorset
Dear Sue,

I am so sorry to read that your dear Ray has had two more seizures. They are alarming and distressing to witness, aren't they. But their effects are often short-lived and I was glad to see that Ray was eating pretty well again later. Brian was always very tired after a seizure and slept much more in the following 24 hours. It is such an up and down business, isn't it. I hope when you next see him, he will be better.

Do post and let us know.

Thinking of you,
Love, Nan XXX
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
60,450
Dundee
Hi Sue. I'm so sorry that Ray was so poorly. I hope he is back in his wheelchair tomorrow and that you get a bit of sun . xx
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
Ray in wheelchair today

Ray was back in his wheelchair today. I went in early to see him as I was going to a funeral. The funeral was for one of our new "friends", he almost made 100, only three months short of the target. Three of us, wives of the residents, went to show support for his wife who has been one of our "beer garden group".

I left Ray sitting with one of the other men and an hour later when I came back they were both still there so we all had lunch in the sun too. As it was BBQ day and fine there were a lot of people sitting out in the courtyard.

Ray fell asleep in the sun after lunch so I wheeled him back inside. He looks so vulnerable when he is asleep. I do so want to bring him home with me some days as if I could somehow just keep him safer here. A pipe dream I know.

Sue.
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
60,450
Dundee
I'm glad Ray was able to enjoy his time sitting with a friend. It must be hard seeing him look so vulnerable though. Take care. x
 

sunray

Registered User
Sep 21, 2008
1,434
East Coast of Australia
Ray now has pneumonia

Ray has pneumonia, he is on an antibiotic and will remain in the nursuing home as I hate the way they treat him in hospital. I have assured the nursing home staff I can come in any time they want me to be with him.

I have two funerals to go to tomorrow afternoon, so many elderly people are dying from complications from chest infections etc this year. Both the funerals tomorrow are of folk who have been in the nursing home less time than Ray.

Prayers and positive thoughts please.

Sue.