Nieuwy25

Real Life Intrudes

76 posts in this topic

My up-till-now incredibly healthy Mom has just been diagnosed with Alzheimers. My Dad passed away almost 20 years ago, so us 5 kids have to decide how to best take care of her. It is late onset, and sudden, and rapid, so the doctor says the progression will probably be rapid, too.

My Dad's death was sudden & unexpected, so we've never had to deal with a terminal illness. The blessing is that she's 81, so she's had a long and a good life - a good family, and good health. She was still working part-time til last week, because she wanted to.

I doubt (hope) any of you have been through this with parents, since, except for StarDew, you're all younger. I just felt like sharing. We're having a family meeting tonight, so I definitely won't be watching hockey. :saddevil:

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So sorry to hear that, Nieuwy! :saddevil: Sounds like your family is all there for each other, which is good. I have no pearls of wisdom for you, but my prayers are with you.

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Thanks, poohbear. All prayers are welcome. :pray:

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Sorry to here Niuey, I don't have a close relative who has alzheimers but my grandmothers brother has it and she relays stories that make me upset. I hope your family can share this load peacefully.

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all my prayers out to you.

It's going to be a tough and painful road I fear... go off on people on the board! It'll make you feel better! :P That's what we're here for!

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My thoughts and prayers are with you as well.

When I was younger my great-grandmother was diagnosed with the disease, so I kind of know how it's like, although too young to really undrestand.

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I dunno what to say Nieuwy, except sorry you have to go through something like this :saddevil:

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I'm sorry Nieuwy...my prayers are with you and your family. :saddevil::pray:

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Nieuwy, I know you probably won't read this post for a little bit (which is understandable), but I'm sure that EVERYONE at NJDevs is behind you -- this is such a great place, it's really like a community here. Althought we bicker and we have our moments where we might not like each other all that much, I really feel like we do care about each other, and like I said, I'm willing to bet EVERYONE send their thoughts and prayers out to you and your family. :pray:

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Niewy,

It's so hard to witness a loved one take a turn for the worse, but Alzheimers is especially tough.

My grandmother lived with us when I was growing up so I was very close to her. We started seeing small things first, like forgetting ingredients in her baking, or forgetting where she left some of her possessions. Then she began to carry her pocketbook with her constantly (in the house mind you!) and accuse us of stealing her money! Finally, it got to the point where she didn't even recognize us anymore. It's a very sad, debilitating disease. I think it's worse for the victim's loved ones, rather than the victim him/herself.

Stay strong, surround yourself with family support and try to keep a sense of humor! You will need some special time for yourself, as a caregiver, to keep your "batteries" strong. Don't ever feel guilty about taking time for YOU!

My thoughts are with you! :pray:

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I'm really sorry to hear that Nieuwy about your Mom :( . My prayers are with you and your family :pray: .

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:( best wishes to you and your mother Nieuwy

I guess the most important thing right now is closeness and comfort. Though we don't like to think about it, every one of us will probably be faced with something similar during our lives. the support you get during a time like this is so important.

Edited by '7'

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I doubt (hope) any of you have been through this with parents, since, except for StarDew, you're all younger.

For nearly 20 years prior to my mothers passing, she had been sick with either cancer or heart problems. Although she was able to work and "get on" with her life, there was always tension of something going very wrong. So I do know how it is to live with someone that has a lot of problems, and from a very young age.

My thoughts are with you and I hope you and your family will be able to get through this. :pray:

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I'm so so sorry to hear that niuwey. Its sad when someone you love and care about so deeply is going through something so bad. My grandma has the same thing...

my thoughts and parayers are with you!! :pray::pray:

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You are in my prayers Nieuwy...my dad died 1/23/81...mom 6/17/95....my Godfather, my most favorite uncle and relative, was a healthy horse...in August of 2000 he was diagnosed with Parkinson...October Alzheimers...I used to go visit him in the nursing home...he recognized no one but he always recognized me...we would talk and play around like he wasn't ill at all...I was the only one who would listen and not tell him there weren't people in the closet, if you know what I mean...he died February 2, 2001...I miss him so much...I miss them all :(

Yes Nieuwy...I know the terminal illness route also...remember this...one day at a time...PM if you need to talk...I may not logon everyday but I will get back to you :pray:

btw...I went to SFC game 3 of 1995 the same day we buried mom...she would have wanted us to...she was such a fan :(

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Thanks to all of you for your very sweet thoughts and prayers. YOU ALL REALLY ARE THE BEST!

Mom's already showing some of the symptoms you mentioned. Like, she always keeps her purse with her. She's not belligerent, yet, or distrustful, but she doesn't like that we have to help her with her checkbook now. It really, really frustrates her because she thinks she's still doing it correctly, but she's not, so we have to kind of watch over her and double check things. It's no fun at all to feel like you're treating your Mom like a child. The next fun thing is taking her car away from her. We have to turn in her driver's license.

She cried when my brother from Colorado had to leave yesterday, and she told him to remember that she has a burial plot next to my Dad's. My brother can usually tease her out of anger or sadness and get her to laugh, but not this time. It's gutwrenching to know that she's aware that something's very wrong, and she may be dying.

We don't have Medicaid set up yet (waiting on the evaluation & prescription for care) so right now we're all taking turns staying with her at her home. I'll be missing 2 days of work this week, but that's all we can do for now.

Thanks for "listening", all of you. I'll probably come here to vent from time to time. ;)

Pray for us.

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Nieuwy,

We love you here! I wish your family all the best and all of you are in my prayers. I know I'm younger and all, but I enjoy talking and I just want you to know I'm here for you if you need me. -Meg

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I'm sorry to hear this. :(

Good luck to you and your family. You're in my prayers, as well.

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I just thought I'd post an update. Mom is less "confused" since the doctor prescribed "Aricept", which is a kind of "memory medicine", I guess. It has made a positive difference.

But she spent the last few days in the hospital after getting a stomach flu, which along with a diuretic they had her on, caused her sodium level to drop almost to the "seizure" zone. She got to go home yesterday, and they've adjusted her medications. First it was potassium that was dangerously low, then sodium. I hope they have it right this time!

We found a wonderful nurse (she's also related to the family by marriage) to stay with her during the week and one weeknight, and my Mom has already fallen in love with her. This is such a blessing and a help for us. This means that we just have to take turns spending 4 weeknights and the weekends with her, so it doesn't interfere with work most of the time. While she was in the hospital, we did take turns staying with her, even though Lupe (the nurse) and Mom's sister were there most of the time, too.

I stayed Thursday night, and woke up Friday morning sick as a dog. :puke: (That kind of sick . . . yuck . . . it wasn't pretty.) So I had to come home as soon as I could, and spent all of yesterday in bed and most of today. I finally feel normal again. B)

My brother from Colorado is coming back in tomorrow to spend a week with her. (He has to take his turns a week at a time, and once his hunting/outfitting season gets going again, he won't be able to come down for awhile. It's nice when he's here since it gives us a whole week off.

Mom is like a little child now when it comes to something she knows is going to hurt. She anticipates it, and worries about it, and starts crying even before it happens. It's so sad. We try to comfort her just like we would a child, but it's so hard see her like that, and not to treat her like an adult.

She's very emotional, and cries easily, so I know she's mourning her loss of health and loss of independence.

Well, thanks for "listening", and caring. And especially, thanks for your prayers.

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Hang in there, Nieuwy!

I'm glad to hear the medication is working well! How wonderful that you found a nurse that both your family and your mom loves! That is a blessing!

Above all else, remember that through this ordeal, you, and the other caregivers, need to take good care of yourselves!! Take time to do the things that YOU enjoy. It can be a frustrating, emotionally draining time. Don't feel guilty for taking the time to do something fun and invigorating for yourself!!

Good luck and God Bless!

Laura

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:pray:

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I'm right there with you, LGD. :pray:

I really hope for the best for you and your family, Nieuwy. Whatever that is. God, that sounds lame! I agree with Lady Stanley that you have to take care of yourselves, too. Get better and bless you and yours. Keep us updated when you can.

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Nieuwy,

My grandfather had alzheimers for a long time before he died. Ive helped care for him and being me and my mother are both EMTs it helped to work with it. If you have any questions, problems, or just need someone to talk with about it feel free to e-mail me. I will gladly help in anyway i can. I know first hand how mentally frustrating it is.

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