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So bizarre !

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Ann Mac, Jul 31, 2014.

  1. jimbo 111

    jimbo 111 Registered User

    Jan 23, 2009
    4,863
    North Bucks
    I hope your daughters school trip is a good one and she decides that is the place to study her future
    Cambridge has an ambience of academic and historical significance
    My background is of mainly northern and regional history
    working class tradesman ,social housing ( as council housing is now called )
    My youngest son went to Cambridge and he is a good example of modern academic learning
    Proud of his background and socialy mature in all company
     
  2. Ann Mac

    Ann Mac Registered User

    Oct 17, 2013
    3,354
    #7902 Ann Mac, Dec 4, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2017
    Hello everyone,

    Slugta, I'm glad the funeral went as well as it could, and I hope that you are OK - I sometimes think that funerals are the start of the most difficult times. I remember Mil, when Fil died, saying repeatedly that she would be 'OK' once we had had the funeral, that she would be able to 'think straight' and things would be 'settled'. And I think that's an expectation that a lot of us have, and then we discover that it's afterwards that it hits - as Spamar says, although I don't think we realise it, we get through the funerals on adrenelin or even on auto pilot and then crash sometime after it. So, just know we are all thinking of you, and here if you need us, hun xxxx

    JM, I'm sorry to read that you're ill x If you feel you can't manage work, then please don't go - chances are you will just prolong the lurgy unless you take some time now. I am glad the AB's have worked, but the business with the tooth sounds long drawn out and very uncomfortable. Got fingers crossed that there is no more swelling, and the dentist can sort it with a filling and crown, rather than you having to go through more intensive treatment xxx

    Just after youngest was born, I was able to give up work for 5 years, to be a stay at home mum. I had a new baby, son was just diagnosed with the dyspraxia/dyslexia and at that stage it was like living with a tasmanian devil, and Mil had begun to suffer from several health problems - the COPD in particular at that point left her with numerous nasty chest infections, and she was often depressed (or maybe it was the start of the dementia, with hindsight!) . So I took a long break from work to deal with all that. Anyway, being a SAHM, I was able to see to things like the lunch boxes and getting the kids up, etc, and when I did go back to work, it was part time - so I guess the kids got used to me doing most things. In hindsight (again) it obviously wasn't a good thing, and I should have made them do more! They had to take their turn at washing up, and keep their bedrooms clean and tidy, but in reality, that was about it. Youngest seems to have now realised, after several rows, that she must set her own alarm clock, but rows have continued over the state of her bedroom - we had another unpleasant meltdown last night when OH removed her internet access because once again, her bedroom floor was awash with dirty clothes, towels and heaven knows what else :(

    Why are you not happy about the idea of Cambridge, if you don't mind me asking? Did your brother have a bad time there?

    No snow here Spamar - well not yet! I am like you - if I can possibly avoid driving in that type of weather, I will! I didn't know that hybrid polecats/ferrets happened! We had 'something', about two years ago, that for several weeks I spotted running along our garden fence just as it was getting light - I could never make out just what it was, other than definitely not a rat - I still wonder if it was polecat or ferret - and now I can add 'hybrid' to my list of suspects!

    2jays - when are you off on your jollies? I'm away for all of this week, so I'll wish you a fab time now, in case I miss you x

    Went to see Mil yesterday, to find she was once again in her room on 'time out', though she seemed quite calm when we went in to her. She was mostly watching a film (an old Tarzan movie - wish I could be a fly on the wall to see what delusions emerge as a result of that one!) and could only spare us the odd few bits of conversation. She did tell me that 'Ann' had come to see her 'yesterday' and had 'been on the cadge, as usual'! Staff brought her lunch in while we were there, and whilst Mil focused on the food, I had a quick word. The staff explained that at the moment, Mil is more or less requiring one to one care again. If they turn their backs, even for a few minutes, she will get into an argument or get nasty with someone :( So, as a preventative measure - and because at busy times like meal times, despite high staff numbers they can't spare someone to watch her every second - if they see her start to get agitated, they get her to her room. It sounds like they get her there very tactfully, its certainly not presented as a punishment or anything like that, and at the moment, doing this seems to be the most effective way of calming her down. She isn't there all the time, by any means - but she is there more and more frequently at the moment. I need to find the time to have a proper chat with staff and find out exactly what's going on with Mil, if they have arranged new meds - and what is likely to happen if her behaviour gets worse? I don't think that there is any danger of her being asked to leave, but the mention of her needing one to one staff set alarm bells ringing for me, and I wonder if there is a possiblity of another CHC assessment if the home think her needs have increased to the extent that she needs that support.

    In a couple of hours time I'll be on the road, heading for a 5 day residential intensive Welsh course. I like spending time with my co-workers, the place we are going is absolutely beautiful - but this close to Christmas, and with all the admin I have piled up, I could so do without it! Also slightly worried that, from the website description, and despite what my boss has said, we are going to be expected to share bedrooms. With my erratic sleep my tendency to wake in the night, and getting up at stupid o'clock, sharing would be a nightmare, not least for the poor soul forced to share with me. A workmate, who is in her 7th month of pregnancy feels exactly the same - so I am hoping that my boss has somehow arranged for us to have our own rooms! I've also read that they 'make use of the natural resources' to teach Welsh in a practical way - which means lessons outside the classroom. That would suit me fine - except that the place is basically on the Llyn peninsula, in the foothills of the Snowdonia range - stunningly beautiful area, but not somewhere that I would find easy to walk around. As well as Welsh lessons, the location offers 'holidays for those who enjoy hill walking!' - not something I can do with my back and hip, much as I would like to. There is no TV, no radio (no signal, apparently) so not sure if my phone will work, and although there is wifi, I would imagine that in that area, it isn't too reliable. I can live without the TV and radio (I have my kindle loaded with books, that'll do me) but I don't like the idea of being potentially cut off from OH and the family, either.

    I'm pretty much packed, so all I have to do now is shower and get going. I am giving myself over an hour extra to get there, and am taking a route which offers me plenty of opportunites to stop and stretch if my back or hip play me up - I've planned several stops along the way - and coincidentally, most of them are in area's where there is stunning scenery, so I suspect that I may grab a few shots at the same time :D

    I doubt if I am going to be able to check in until next weekend at the earliest, so in the meantime, everyone look after yourselves, and much love to all of you xxxx
     
  3. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    5,194
    Suffolk
    Have as good a week as you can manage, Ann.
     
  4. RedLou

    RedLou Registered User

    Jul 30, 2014
    1,023
    #7904 RedLou, Dec 4, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2017
    Ann - hope your week goes well. Slugsta - hope you had a good, distracting time last night and the manflu isn't too taxing!
    On the subject of Cambridge, JM -- perhaps it was the college that was the problem rather than the university? --My daughter accepted a place at Oriel, Oxford, which has a reputation for being the friendliest of the Oxford colleges, but I'm sure she would have found some of the more swaggering colleges a less amendable environment. It's quite easy these days to suss out the reputations of each college online.
    I'm going to bore you all with a few holiday photos on this frosty day. Mainly because they tell the story of our holiday succinctly!

    DSC01583.jpeg
    DSC01617.jpeg
     
  5. RedLou

    RedLou Registered User

    Jul 30, 2014
    1,023
  6. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    2,611
    USA
    Ann, hope the intensive Welsh course goes well and that it's not too physically intensive, or tiring, or taxing. I hear you that with Christmas coming (more quickly than I had expected, apparently), as well as your never ending admin travails, you might not love the timing.

    On the other hand, no teen daughter angst whilst you are away! Hope you can enjoy it as much as possible.

    I'm sorry that MIL is needing so much care and support. I know how dreadful her "upsets" are, from your past posts, and while I'm sure the staff are doing what they can, it must be a worry for you and OH. I hope you can get some information about their thoughts for her care going forward.

    RedLou, the photos are lovely, thank you! Was it amazing?

    JM, hope you can get your infection/lurgy/tooth sorted out. Ouch.

    Slugsta, glad the funeral service went well, and that you have your heating sorted. I think I saw over on Sam's thread that you are having an electric fire fitted?

    Spamar, how are you these days?

    I have to admit to being left very unsettled by our visit to my mother this past weekend. Normally we are very careful to go at her "good" time of day (late morning to early afternoon) as she sundowns and can get very agitated, but on Saturday it was a choice of go later or don't go at all, so go later we went.

    The good news is that OH had a chance to sort out things in her room and talk to the staff, while I was with her. The bad news is that she was very disoriented and confused. She seemed to have a glimmer of an idea about who I was when we left--I do wonder if somehow when she sees me and OH together it prompts something--but before that she was dreadfully confused, bordering on agitation, and a lot of "they won't know where I am," "I will get lost," and "where will I sleep?" It didn't help that she found us in her room (she was at the evening meal when we arrived, and did not see us, but left the dining room and came to her room) as I think this confused her quite a bit: how did you know where to find me? I didn't know you were coming?

    Thanks to TP and all your posts and my support group, I knew how to deal with it. I invited her to walk with me, I took her to look at the fish in the tank, I redirected her back to the dining room and got her to sit down across from her friend Miss T, and that all seemed to ground her and then we made what I think of as, "dementia small talk," which is normally what we do on a visit.

    But it really points up to how much she has declined, how bad her dementia is, and of course that is never pleasant. And the state of her room was not to be believed. I've never had any major cause for concern with the care home but I was so upset that I really wanted to set heads rolling. I think I may need to start my own thread somewhere here on TP to really get it all out of my system, but I'll try to be brief.

    The care home has a contract with an incontinence supply company. I could bring in supplies, but they (understandably) prefer the families go with this company as they can order supplies whenever they are needed and get them delivered, within hours. The price is comparable or better to what I would pay and I am spared the hassle. All fine and good.

    We have noticed on prior visits that the supplies seemed to be backing up, if you will forgive the phrase, and I've had conversation and emails with them to make sure they aren't over-ordering, and was assured they weren't.

    We found at least ten boxes of unopened gloves (50 or 100 pairs each, I can't remember), at least four packs of unopened wipes, and several unopened packages of pullups/pads. I was so upset I made my husband take a photo of all of it with his phone. There were supplies all over her (not very large) room and en-suite bathroom. You basically couldn't move for the boxes.

    Writing this, it seems inconsequential and not worth my distress, but I haven't been able to sleep properly the last two nights.

    I am going to stop as I will just upset myself. I need to contact the care home nurse manager (and I still haven't met the new unit nurse manager!) and I don't want to as I'm afraid I will yell or cry or both.

    I hate this awful disease so much, I can't even tell you. Thanks for listening and hope you are all as well as can be. And of course we will be looking forward to the Welsh update, Ann!
     
  7. Ann Mac

    Ann Mac Registered User

    Oct 17, 2013
    3,354
    Bore da pawn - good morning everyone - by some miracle, the WiFi here appears to be working this morning, so trying for a quick post!

    Red - those photographs look amazing! You can probably guess that I am green with envy ! Please feel free to 'bore' me with more pics please - I'd love to see them.

    Amy, that would really annoy me too - not fair for your Mum to be living with limited space and boxes piled everywhere :( It would definitely make me cross too!

    Spamar , Slugsta, JM and everyone else - hope you are all OK?

    Arrived here safely Monday early afternoon, after a drive through some of the prettiest scenery in North Wales. Last bit of the journey was a bit of a white knuckle ride down a nearly vertical narrow lane . The course is being held in what was an old quarry village, on the Llyn Peninsula - some of the old workers terraced cottages have been renovated as accommodation, my classroom is in the small manor house where the quarry manager used to live, the old 'capel' (chapel) has been renovated and is used for talks on some evenings - it's all very beautiful - but also all quite eerie! We are pretty much on the edge of a cliff, with views of the sea and mountains all around. And we are in the middle of an incredibly fierce gale, with rain coming down from all directions and wind almost strong enough to lift you off your feet! I'm lying on my bed listening to the wind howling and crashing round outside as I type. As would be said in Welsh - Mae'n gwyntog iawn ruan - it's very windy now ! And it's apparently going to get worse - so although we are still staying till tomorrow, due to leave at around 3, that may well change. I'll be quite happy to leave early, as according to the forecasts, snow Is due across North Wales from midnight tonight and it sounds like the journey home is not going to be fun! Not been reassured by tales of people being snowbound here for days, or having to have been evacuated and air lifted out! The course has gone well - a lot of the Welsh I learnt years ago has come flooding back, and we have actually finished the beginners work in 2 and a half days - so this morning and tomorrow we are starting on the next level course - and this afternoon we are off to Pwllheli - a small local town - to go shopping, all 'yn gymraeg' - all in Welsh. Lord only knows what I'll end up buying!

    Right - going to finish now, before the WiFi goes - amazed that I've managed to type this much! Take care and live to all xxxx
     
  8. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    Morning all,

    How very strange! I typed up a long post the other day, full of sparkling wit and wisdom of course, and it seems to have disappeared into the ether :(

    Ann, I'm glad that the course is going well - are the sleeping arrangements better than you feared? I hope you will be able to leave for home at a sensible time tomorrow (or even today) so that you can be back before the really bad weather sets in.

    Amy, I am not surprised that you are upset by your mum's room being full of inco supplies! I responded to a message on TP a while back, saying I did not think it was unreasonable to have some of the supplies stashed in the residents wardrobe - but boxes all over the floor is a totally different situation :mad:

    RedLou, those photos are fantastic, it looks as if you had a wonderful time?

    Hoping that everyone has battened down the hatches as it sounds as if some rough weather is on its way :(
     
  9. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    5,194
    Suffolk
    Hi everybody!
    Skugsta, I’ve done that before - written my wittiest reply and completely lost it! I suppose it’s out there in the ether somewhere!
    Can only agree with Slugstas comments! Fabulous photos, Red. I friend of mine did a South African trip earlier this year. She is also a brilliant photographer! Spent a long time going through her photos.
    Ann, how much is Welsh spoken these days? Sorry for the heresy, but isn’t it about time it was treated as a second language? I mean, if you grow up Welsh speaking, you’re confined to Wales, and I guess North Wales, until you are fluent in English.
    Our carers group had its Christmas dinner yesterday. Spoilt a little by the lady with most of the food whose car broke down! So dinner was a little late.
    Singing this afternoon. That Christmas get together is next week!
    Very windy here this morning, then heavy rain. Hoping for the best when I go out later.
     
  10. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    3,313
    Female
    Chester
    The Welsh language has had a massive resurgence in recent years, mid and North West wales are very strongly welsh speaking, very much first language, all my kids friends from Llyn Peninsula area are first language Welsh, and many I know send kids to Welsh speaking schools even if parents are English speaking.

    BIL learnt welsh as many of his customers would only give work to welsh speakers and he now speaks welsh at home.

    Many who moved to Wales some time ago are now learning Welsh as they find it a necessity as the language increases in usage. Both my kids want to learn welsh, and I notice those from South Wales are speaking in Welsh more (different dialect/language per OH who could speak welsh)

    Whilst all areas have some Welsh language schooling provision, some areas have no English language schooling provision.
     
  11. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    5,194
    Suffolk
    Thanks JM. Gosh, I’m amazed! But I know more people are learning Cornish for instance. I’m a confirmed non linguist! We turned down a chance to move to Italy, OHs language skills were on a par with mine! His sister was disgusted, but then, she was a linguist!
    Memo to self, don’t move to Wales!
    Must ask my school friend if she’s learnt Welsh!
     
  12. Ann Mac

    Ann Mac Registered User

    Oct 17, 2013
    3,354
    Lol Spamar - JM is right! Welsh is very much a living language, and more and more people are both choosing to learn, or sending their children to Welsh medium schools. I hear it being spoken all the time.

    Slugsta, thankfully all got our own rooms - boss made sure of it, we had all said no to sharing. The rooms are comfy - but the first two nights they were so cold - radiators turned down low and the heating only on for a couple of hours a day - though once we said, that was put right and they have been fine since.

    We are supposed to be here till 3.30 tomorrow - and the boss is very keen for us to stay till then . But, very bad snow is forecast in North Wales, starting in the early hours of tomorrow morning, and driving home could be difficult to say the least :( I've already said that I am leaving no later than 1pm - lunch time, but having seen the latest forecast, and after several worried messages from the family, they are going to let me know what it's like in the morning, and if I feel I need to leave after breakfast, then I'll leave - my boss is acting as though I am being dramatic, but I know how bad the roads can be and I am just not risking it. We are actually forecast 3 consecutive days of light to heavy snow - with a couple of sleet downpours in between :(

    Will see what tomorrow brings!
     
  13. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    2,611
    USA
    Ann, glad to see your updates, and please do be safe getting home!!
     
  14. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    3,313
    Female
    Chester
    Yep I've seen the forecasts, on the plus side the coast doesn't normally get it, I know you mentioned the scenic route out, but please use the main roads home, A487 to Caernarfon and Bangor and then A55, when I took dau to Abersoch the other summer I got a good run, less than 1.5 hours. I know this might not be the direct route to yours but the coast tends to stay snow free, and this road will be much less susceptible than the inland route, even if it does go over the Halkyns.
     
  15. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    5,194
    Suffolk
    Just been reading the news, I see there is now a Cornish app for adding Cornish ends to your typing instead of English ones! I suppose there is one for welsh as well. I really am learning!
    Yes Ann, JM is right, stick to the coast road. It’s good sense!
     
  16. RedLou

    RedLou Registered User

    Jul 30, 2014
    1,023
    Ann - let us know when you are home safe!
    Just also wanted to send Amy a hug. And to Slugsta.

    Yes, it was our best holiday yet, we think. Three days on safari, during which we had close encounters with amazing animals. The most thrilling was when this male lion suddenly got to his feet and stared straight at us. I kept thinking he could get us in one bound but the guide said to keep still and not stand up, and the lion simply turned, stretched and began roaring - apparently letting other lions know he was up and active. Most emotional moment, though, was meeting two cheetah cubs whose mother had been killed. Was within feet of them and they were still fierce and wild as going to be released. Absolutely incredible animals. I knelt and gazed straight into one of their eyes. We were throwing them an Impala to eat, so no danger they would eat me!
    Then we went to the coast and relaxed. The turtle on the beach, I actually touched as she made her way to the sea after laying her eggs. People (Zulu) were amazingly warm but without ever being ingratiating.
     
  17. 2jays

    2jays Registered User

    Jun 4, 2010
    10,521
    West Midlands
    C5875A40-6FD5-4CC2-88AD-64CFB790F2EC.jpeg
    AnnMac saw this and thought of you :)
     
  18. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    2,611
    USA
    I see several people are sporting festive additions to their avatars; love the snowflake, Spamar! Slugsta, maybe your snail needs a wreath round an antenna or something.

    RedLou, what a fascinating holiday you had. I have a special affection for the cheetahs as I have a friend who once worked in research in that field, and did a stint at a cheetah conservation centre in Botswana, I think. Apparently it's very difficult to convince local farmers not to kill them, as they do prey on livestock. (But not people--even without the impala you likely would not have been their idea of a main course!) I also think it would be fascinating to see the turtles laying their eggs. I know it can be observed on the east coast of the States at certain times of the year (depending on species, I imagine) but I've not had the opportunity.

    JM, I've been told often enough about the weather variations in the UK (especially on the travel fora I frequent) that you would think I would know this by now. The BBC had some nice snowy photos this morning. I also saw the headline for the Cornish language predictive text app that Spamar mentioned, but haven't read the article yet.

    Ann, I re-read your description of where your course was held and it sounds fascinating and beautiful, but I have to wonder, what was it like for the people who lived there (with no central heating). I know it's all down to temperament and so on, but you wonder about living someplace so isolated.

    I also appreciate all the information on Welsh. I'm not a linguist by any means, but I do find languages fascinating and fun. As a child I read a series of books by Susan Cooper (The Dark is Rising series), one of which is set in Wales, and has some Welsh language information in one scene, which utterly entranced me. While I'm all in favour of people being able to communicate with a common language, the relationship between language and culture is complex, and I feel a pang when I read reports about languages dying out. Ann, I'm not surprised that you remembered more of your Welsh than you thought you would as I've heard similar stories.

    So I hope Ann has had an uneventful journey home and can now concentrate on festive preparations!

    As some of you have seen, I've started my own thread over in the Dealing with Difficult Feelings subforum. I had a rough time after the care home visit last weekend and finally went for the individual thread. You are all more than welcome to drop by, but not required, and I won't abandon your thread, Ann, I promise! I've been too comfortable here for too long. I'll just take some of my own stuff, elsewhere.

    I did have a conversation with the care home's nurse manager and they have promised to suspend ordering of the incontinence products for now; we will see! I've also been to the care home twice this week, one not great visit when I wasn't recognized, and one more normal visit when I was, but she is still "off." I am getting her checked out by the neurologist next week. In fact, I should go work on my letter to him right now.

    Hope everyone here is as well as can be and much love to you all.
     
  19. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    2,611
    USA
    2jays, that's amazing!
     
  20. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    What a wonderful trip 2Jays! I would have loved to go on a safari but was always put off because I have a phobia about snakes. Too late now as I could not manage the travelling anyway.

    Ann, I hope you had an uneventful journey home and are now safe, snug and warm.
     

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