Monday, May 29, 2017

Keep On Keeping On.

Earlier this past week, my siblings and I made a decision to move Mom to a different living facility.  After talking to her physical therapist, it seemed the right decision. The PT told us that he thought Mom was very weak and needed to use a cane or walker, but she refused that.  He said that as weak as she was, it was her mental ability that really worried him. He felt that she needed much more supervision and care. And so, I contacted House of Hope in WF. My brother and I had toured it the week before and decided it would be great for Mom. I initiated the move. The head nurse and their social worker (works with mental illness) came to evaluate Mom on Friday. 

I arrived a little early at Mom's for the evaluation. She was awake (sort of) and got up and got dressed.  She put on one of her floozy dresses and her new shoes. I thought she was doing pretty good through the evaluation. This time, she could note tell what year, month, day, or even what season it was, but she did manage to repeat the three words (chair, table, and apple) with less prompts. Then one minute later when conversation had continued on, she could not repeat any of the words. And so it went. After the nurse, social worker, and administrator conferred on the evaluation, they called me back to say that they could take Mom into their facility/nursing home and wanted her there on Tuesday after Memorial Day.

This nursing home has several wings - three of which are dedicated to dementia patients. They have them ranked: A wing, B wing, and C wing - depending on the level of care needed. Mom made the B wing. I think this was a little upsetting to my brother, and maybe to me a little less. No one wants to think that their mother is not capable of normal activities and thinking. But I do think that these people know what they are doing. They said there would be an observation period of two weeks and they would re-evaluate her. She could move up to the A wing. But they wanted her to settle in, get calmed down, and they felt that the B wing was the place for that.

On Saturday, Pete and I moved my dad's old recliner into her new room. I will place some photos and stuff there so that she feels at home quickly. I spent some time shopping for her some more appropriate clothes for physical therapy and such. My SIL took in Mom's laundry so that we could get Mom all packed and ready for the move.

The move is tomorrow morning. I have ten-jillion things to do beforehand. And yes, it is a bit overwhelming. I am working to stay focused and not emotional. It reminds me of when my dad was first having problems and was then diagnosed with cancer. Toby was off in Italy working for Halliburton. I was home on the ranch, when Mom called and said something was wrong with Dad. I went to WF and took him to the doctor and found out he had a tumor on his brain. Then my MIL called and was also in WF, because Toby's nephew was in the hospital having chemo for cancer - it was the first we knew of that - all of this while Toby was away. I decided to tell my neighbor and good friend (who was also a rancher and happened to be an elder in our church) because I might need help or something since Toby was away. I remember telling him straightforward, no emotion. He took it all in. Then he said, "Don't cry. Now is not the time for crying. Be strong." It was amazing how much that helped me.

There were so many times when I was overwhelmed with my Dad's care and treatments, but John's words would come to me and I would take that emotion and put it on a shelf in my brain. Now then those words are still helping me. I cannot be emotional yet. I need to be strong and get this done.

Later on after reporting in to John, my neighbor and elder, on how my dad was doing and what all was going on, he said, "Now you can cry." I have to say that there were times when I did cry, but for the most part, I remained strong. There is a time for weeping, and there is a time for being strong. It helps me today with my mom. I'll let you know  how the move goes.

On a happier note, we had a birthday party for GBN4 who turned two back on May the 5th. We also celebrated my DIL's birthday along with her dad and Jesse and Bo's birthdays which are coming up shortly. 
I know it is Memorial Weekend. I have been remembering those who gave their lives in service of their country. And I remember how blessed I am.


Etienne said...

Oh my. Your granddaughters are getting so big! It won't be long and they will be off to college!

I was blessed, in that my parents conked-out without any prolonged health problems.

Hopefully your mother will like the place and the staff. Hopefully there will be someone she can tease.

Jo Castillo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jo Castillo said...

Hard and trying times. You are “a big strong girl with some sense”. You will need to read Joanna’s epitaph here to understand
It always makes me smile.

Your Mom may relax when she has less responsibility. I know Frances did when she didn’t have to worry about everything. Wishing the best for you. I like Etienne’s comment about conked-out. Gene and I are hoping we can do that for our kids! We are now getting to be the aged parents.

Bag Blog said...

There is something to be said for conking out. This whole thing has certainly given me a different outlook on death and maybe on living too.

I will follow the link. I, too, hope that my mom settles down. One of the big issues with the evaluations was that mom was very anxious. I am really hoping for the best.