Wednesday, July 28, 2010

July 28, 2010

Today marks day five for mom being in the hospital. she has pneumonia and although she is not getting worse, she is not getting any better. She is still suffering from pretty bad nausea and we continue trying to get the right combination of things to stop that. the doctor says he may release her on Friday but not to hold our breath.

on top of all of this we discovered mold on the walls and under the carpet of the common area between our condo and the neighbors. We're trying to figure out if that's how mom acquired pneumonia and I'm thinking yes. They are scheduled to take out the drywall and replace the wall and carpet on Friday and that's a very big reason to keep mom away from there on Friday. I'll talk to the doctor about that later.

Consulting with the doctor about dad two weeks ago we agreed to take him off the Exelon patch. Now I'm not sure that was a good idea. He was declining with the patch but now I'm noticing that the very short term memory is really having problems kicking in. We went to the bank and about fifteen minutes later he asked, "when are we going to stop at the bank and do what we need to do?" Then we got gas - he pumped the gas. We got in the car and were about 15 minutes down the road when he asked when and where i was planning to stop and get gas. when i told him we just filled it he said he couldn't remember doing that at all. he's also not recognizing things on the way home from the hospital. we've been taking this trip almost daily now for close to three months.

this Alzheimer's/dementia stuff is so hard to grasp. We're going to get some tests when mom gets better. The doctor is not happy with the rate of decline. Fortunately, Dad doesn't realize that he's forgetting these things. the incident of ocd-like characteristics are increasing. He constantly checks his wallet for items and his little notebook that he has always kept in his shirt pocket. He also goes to the bathroom a lot but doesn't do anything when he's in there. He goes in because he can't remember the last time he went. It's like security blanket right now.

I have heard from a few people who have read this blog and have offered advice and input on people they have known with this disease. I greatly appreciate it all and if you are one of them I would love to hear from you. You can either respond to this blog in the comments area or simply email me at

Some of you have started sending handwritten cards and letters to Dad. I cannot begin to express to you the importance of these things. He reads them and keeps them near his chair to read again next week and the next.

Mom and Dad went for a short walk down the hallway today. mom was pushing the IV stand and they were holding hands. A nurse walked by and said, "now that's real love". And almost immediately I found myself in the midst of about 6 other nurses and they were all watching them walk down the hall, hand in hand. The nurses here admire both of my parents. their love for one another is unmatched. mom got very tired quickly and Dad helped her back in to bed, straightening the sheets before she got in, covering her with the sheet and blanket, fluffing her pillows, and making sure her water and other items were within reach. He kissed her lips, then her nose, then her forward, and made his way back to her lips the same direction...a ritual i have seen repeated on multiple occasions. Even as mom is right now asleep, Dad is seated right next to her, working on one of his puzzle books and every two or three minutes he looks over at her - stares at her for a few minutes - then returns to his book. He told me today that he hopes and prays that if God decides to take mom that he would take him at the same time. Mom has said the same thing about dad - neither one of them cares on inch to exist without the other one. That is an amazing testament to the love of two people who have overcome amazing obstacles. I pray their love continues to conquer cancer - pneumonia - and dementia.


Jamie said...

Wow, I am truly touched by this...I will continue to keep them both in my prayers, in hopes someday to meet you both.

Anonymous said...

thank you jamie. we will meet barb