Saturday, June 30, 2012

Words

Today mom forgot words.

She forgot door knob, sweater, night gown, and water.

Sometimes it happens when she is tired-and she is fine later.

I know there will be a time when she wont talk at all.

I want...

I want to take a picture of the old style pencil sharpener my dad put up for me when I was in 5th grade. I wish I had the typewriter mom bought me in 10th grade-I was so proud of it. Who knew two years later computers would totally take over?

I want a couple of seedlings from trees in their back yard.

I want to see my dad working in the garden he planted every year. I want to see his 49er hat hanging in utility room.

I want to taste moms pork chops. I want to have Christmas in the house I grew up with our whole family, a new baby every year, someone with a new car, the men outside throwing football. The little girls playing with dolls in the dining room corner, mom admiring new house shoes, and the baking dish she wanted. Dad placing his gifts on his bed..where he will look over them again and call you the next day to say thank you.

I'm thankful for memories. I'm blessed to have them.

Grocery shopping with mom...

I am trying to get more organized. I want to be able to go to the grocery store once a week-except for milk stops because I don't have room for all the milk we drink. Mom drinks a lot of milk!

Back to my shopping trip....

Mom and I are in Kroger. She is much like a kid picking up stuff etc.., but we go down every aisle mainly because I want mom to walk! I do not pay too much attention... My focus - get groceries , get depressed on how much I spend and go home!

We get to checkout and that is when I wake up! Mom put packages of cookies, chips, and yes light bulbs into the cart! But the kicker was a roast priced at $16! I'll say! Poor cashier, I told her we do not need a lot of this. She rolled her eyes.

As we were leaving mom asked the kid who bagged our groceries..."did you put my diet coke in there?"

Ha ha

Friday, June 29, 2012

HOT

IT IS HOT HOT HOT HOT

Reason 999

To love Melecia....

She gave mom a perm with the kit I bought! Whoo hoo! Mom loves it too.

Taped Bibles

In the midst of packing, unpacking, sorting, tossing out I have found old Bibles of my dads.

Every one of them was taped with his familiar duct tape. He read them until they fell apart. In the front of each was his name written in his bold signature followed by scripture references. He was in Isaiah when he could no longer read those comforting words.

If only all our Bibles were taped.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Fear?

Mom has this fear of me leaving her. She follows me step for step. I needed to mow...so I raised every window blind..she would go window to window with each lap.

She cried wanting to go home. My heart broke. I just hugged her small frame and told her where I am she will be.

The mood can turn on a dime...she was real irritable about an hour later.

She slept all night. That's good!

I still hate this disease.

Observation....

Why does grass burn up from the heat and lack of water? But weeds do not?

Who needs diamonds?

Most women want diamonds...

Not this gal! I want a weedeater!

A good weedeater.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Stages......

I'm sometimes asked what stage of Alzheimer's is your mom in? Sometimes I want to say all of them! Or it is just one long stage.

But truthfully after reading tonight...one web site said there are 7 stages .... I would say she is in between stages 4 and 5.

Mom is much like a toddler tonight. Fighting sleep, arguing about everything, wanting to be left alone, yet I can't take a step without her behind me.

What may be a "minor" problem to us can upset the balance of an alzheimer patient's day~causing them to go from one extreme to the other. They don't know how to tell you they have a headache, if they are having trouble going to the bathroom, if their ear hurts. A small cut throws mom in a tizzy.

Today started off so good for Melecia and mom. They went for a brief walk.. Mom turned on a dime and Melecia could do nothing with her. Mom just sat on the curb and told folks things so off base! Melecia was hurt. Tori was able to leave work for a bit and help out.

But after mom ate and went to restroom she felt better.

I hate this disease. I hate what it does. I want to be positive tonight- I want to laugh. But I can't. Maybe tomorrow but not tonight.

Quick Updates!


***Mom is moved - she seems to be settling okay. Today was a rough day for her and Melecia.  Melecia is kind of "freaked" out.  Say a prayer.

***Mom had a lot of stuff!  Tons of dollar store knick knacks, light bulbs, and Liquid Gold!

***Steve has been awesome!  I could not have made it these past few days without him.

***Our church family is awesome - they helped us move and we finished so much earlier.


Friday, June 22, 2012

3:10 am

I've been awake since 3:10.

Were it not for waking up mom I would get up and do some things.

I can't sleep!

Diane

I wish I could describe what you mean to me.

Thank you for everything!

For simply being you. For showing up with a purse and popcorn. For laughing, for encouraging and understanding my roller-coaster emotions

Luv ya!

Thank you

Thank you to Diane, Kathy, John, Cody, Keith and Ronnie.

There are no words.

Dollar Store Knick Knacks

It is safe to say my mother has 100 Knick knacks from the dollar store. I think she has one for every bird known to man.

Vases, she wasn't one to have flowers but she sure has vases.

Light bulbs...it is safe to say dozens and I mean dozens of lightbulbs in every shape and size.

Ink pens. Yep a lot them too along with rubberbands, nails, and glue. And she's never been crafty.!

She was.....is a neat hoarder.


Stuff

It boils down to stuff.

We all work so hard on this earth for stuff. Oh, I know we must eat, have a place to sleep, we need to feel warm and safe.

But what about our stuff? George Carlin, the comedian did this skit about stuff. We work to buy stuff, then we buy something to put the stuff in and we keep on buying stuff!

With that being said...my mother loves her stuff. From her pictures, dishes, purses and such... her whole life was before me in piles, bags and truckloads.

Oh I have some funny thing I saw. But right now I wish life was normal for mom...where she could live in her house with her stuff.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Last day

For 32 years she has lived in the house built by her husband. For 10 of those years she lived without him.

Everyday she would clean, dust and mop. Dinners cooked and ate at the table, laundry done by noon, yard mowed on Thursday, grocery shopping on Friday, miscellaneous clothes shopping on Saturday after Lunch because house would need to be cleaned, Sunday was church, followed by an awesome Sunday dinner and a nap.

Pictures of kids, grandkids and all the greats line the hallway. Black and white aged photos of her parents and family are at the end of the hallway..missing them.

Her bathroom always in blue and white smells of Ponds cold cream and Dove Soap. Her bedroom smells of Charlie cologne and Avon lotion.

Shoes neatly lined up, clothes in color coordinated row, blankets to the right in one closet, extra linens on the third shelf to the left of the other.

She left yesterday not knowing it was her last day. She will never go back. She came to her new home where she has been staying almost every night for the past year found her new closet not quite color coordinated...yet.

She wiped a few counters, dusted a little and sat down and said "I like my new room. I like this house, and I'm glad I'm here."

Praying those feelings are here tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A day closer

A day closer to moving mom.

Our wonderful church family is really helping us! Hopefully we will be settled soon. If there us such a thing as settled.

Mom being contrary tonight.

3:40 AM

I'm awake! Ugh!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Mom and her luggage....

She packed today in garbage bags.

She will be warm one bag was just full of coats and sweaters. Mind you it is hot as all get out!

Mom and my dogs

The love her and she loves to hate them.

Ha ha

Exhaustion

I am totally and completely exhausted!

My whole body hurts. I feel sick.

I'm ready for mom to go to bed. And it is looking rough!

We need help!

We need help moving stuff! So much is going to different houses.

Let me know

Wide awake

I was wide awake at 3:30. My first thought?

Remember to get moms winter clothes from spare bedroom closet.

I will be so glad when we are settled.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Much accomplished

Mom's room is painted.

Sam is completely moved out. We will pick his bed up tomorrow. Thank you to Todd and Lacey for giving him the bed.
Thank you to my sister Pam for getting Sam a new comforter and sheets. And a few things for camp.

We will begin to make changes this weekend.

I have thrown out a lot. Put up Stuff in attic for Sam to have one day. His stuffed raccoon Daniel - they were best buds for a long time. I found a few cherished green army men, soccer jerseys and class t-shirts. And other treasures he's collected over time.

Two bags of stuff for Goodwill. And stuff for yard sales etc. Soon we will be going through moms house. The thought is depressing me.

I can't imagine not dialing moms number.

Pray for mom that she adjusts okay. Pray for us - it will be a lot to get used to. But we will get there.

Mom and Whopper Jr's

She absolutely loves Burger King!

Too cute!

Toliet paper roll......

Ann Landers said that an editor told her to never go in the bathroom...,

She ignored that advice....

I am too!

I'm just saying....am I the only person in this house who can change the toliet paper roll?

Hmmph!

Happy Father's Day

To my sweet, funny, protective, loving daddy - I miss you. Today more than ever. We are taking care of momma. She is moving in with us. She misses you too!

To Steve. I do love you. Thank you for spending this whole weekend prepping the house for mom to move in. I loved working side by side with you. I loved the way you loved me this weekend.

To Charlie and Jerry. Thank you for taking care of and loving my sisters.

Happy Father's Day to all the dads.

SUE

My dear sweet friend Sue is no longer in pain. She no longer has to worry about chemo, blood transfusions, medicine, she can walk....dance across beautiful beaches in heaven.

She loved the beach, cotton candy, candy corn, Cosco, her friends, family and her husband Ray.

She was funny, blunt, real, encouraging, open, and never let things get to her.

I can't imagine this world not hearing her laugh. I hurt. I miss her.

Please be in prayer for her husband Ray, her father (he lost his wife two weeks ago and Sue's brother about a year ago). She has other family and friends-I know they all are hurting.

I am better for knowing Sue.

Love you Sue.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Guilty Pleasure

New show on A&E----Cajun Justice.

Love it!

Poor officers arrest a drug dealer and catch an alligator.

Wandering.....

Wandering how all these changes will affect all of us.

So much to be done .... Where to begin?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

ADJUSTMENTS AND TRANSITIONS

After much prayer, thought and conversation.  We will be transitioning mom to live with us full time.  She just does not need to be by herself anymore. 

This will help me considerably - I will not running between two houses twice a day.  Grocery shopping will be easier.  I won't worry about her at night.  She will be safe. She knows are home and feels comfortable and safe.  Melecia will come to our home. 

I have to take this moment to brag on Sam - we told him of our plans last night - he was awesome!  He will be taking a smaller room at the front of the house so mom can have a bigger room with privacy, etc.  And she will be close to me.  He never fussed, never complained.  In fact he is excited.  I am so proud of him. I can't think of many 14 year old boys who would be so quick to give up so much. 

The hard part will be sorting through stuff and getting her situated.  A lot of stuff will be divived between my sisters and I, some of it given away, etc.  I wrote to both of my sisters - in a way it will be easier to do now twhile she is here on this earth than later on.  It will be hard to see some of my dad's things - but it will easier to be practical about a lot of it. 

I know we all will have adjustments to make. It won't be easy. I know at times we will be tired and discouraged.   This is another leg of this journey. I know God will provide each step of the way. 

We will paint, move furniture, all the stuff you need to do to get ready......my target date is the first week of July!

Please pray for us all.



Saturday, June 09, 2012

Sam and the wedding shoes

For a school dance this year I bought Sam a pair of dress shoes at Goodwill. I figured he would only wear them once.

Well...,,

His best friends sister got married today. Sam was helping at the wedding. (his friends family is awesome! They include Sam in so much - they fill in so many gaps that we have right now because of us caring for mom- they are a true blessing!)

Sam wore his dress clothes - looked downright handsome. And the shoes. They were a tad snug ... But no time or money for another pair.

At some point his soul came off one shoe. He didn't get the least bit upset or embarrassed. He hung them on the car of bride and groom. I love his attitude. The brides father lost his heel to his shoe... So he tied his shoes to the car also. Too funny!!!!!!

I'm sorry but I hate Alzheimer's

I just hate it!

Right now mom is being so mean.

We have the whole house locked tight. I took her to get ice cream, she decided to pour it out in my car.

She is wide awake now just glaring at me. She is wearing her wool sweater and holding her purse. She has no clue who I am.

Well, heck at least this takes my mind off groceries! ha ha

In all seriousness, I need---we need prayer.

Lucy

Pray for sweet Lucy Krull and her family.

I do not know her family at all - we live in the same county. But she has been sick for 18 long months. Bravely fighting with a sweet smile.

Their time together is counted by days...by hours.

Pray!!!!!!!!!

Laundry

I need the laundry elves to visit.

Sundowning

4:20 mom started sundowning. She is looking for the shoes that are on her feet.

I'm trying to be still and quiet.

DADDY

10 Years ago today my dad.....daddy went to heaven.

He would have been 84 this year. He and mom would have been married for 62 years. His friends called him Charlie, his nieces and nephews called him Uncle Rufus, grandchildren called him Pepa, mom called him Charles. But only three of us called him Daddy.

I miss him. Alzheimer's and Parkinson's destroyed his body , but God had his heart.

Love you always daddy.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Snake!!!

Today I saw a snake on the top of mom's shed.

As far as I'm concerned it was a python.

But I go in that shed! I use the mower the trimmers ! Ugh

Tonight

Tonight I am so tired! I took the day off today. I was so tired I was sick. I wish I could explain how bad I felt and feel.


I'm so thankful for Melecia and all she does. I know daytime isn't easy either. But today was a good day for mom. So the night seems to be good!


Please pray for a renewing of energy and strength.


Mom and Melecia

Melecia came into our lives almost two months ago. I cannot adequately explain what she means to us....to mom....me!

Her official "title" is "home health aide or assistant" but she is so much more.

She gives mom manicures nail polish and all.

Mom has three pair of glasses she insists on carrying in her purse....but Melecia knows which pair works best!

Before Melecia leaves each day she gets the coffee pot ready for mom to have the next morning.She remembers to fill the sugar bowl for mom!

She walks with mom twice a day around her yard and listens to mom's stories and absorbs details.

She curls moms hair and knows which shirt is her favorite.

She calls me on the weekend to check on mom!

Mom calls her "girl" but loves her and misses her when she doesn't see her!!

I know business is business. Personal is personal. Melecia handles it all wonderfully with her energetic laugh, positive attitude and her love of people!

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

LUCY

Pray for Lucy Krull and her family....

Here is her mom's blog. 

http://erikandkatekrull.blogspot.com/

JUDY AND I

My sister Judy and I have a lot of good memories.  Goodness knows she was there through my darkest hours and did so much with dad.

Back in the day....(don't you love that expression) when there was The Mall of Memphis - we would go and just have the best time. We wouldn't have any money between us.  We would swap up buying stuff.  I remember when she bought me a night gown after I had Tori - I loved that gown.  I remember us buying black shoes that tied - we both loved those shoes. 

We would go Christmas shopping she looking for a McDonald's Play Set for her son Ryan at then Service Merchandise- and we would be in my little Dodge Omni - we somehow pushed it through the mall, got it in the car without Ryan seeing it.  We would go in together and get gifts for dad (he loved the 49ers).

I remember when we discovered Dollar Tree  - it was at the mall - we both spent more at the Dollar Store that day than we did any other store - for some reason we needed all of it.

29 cent hamburgers. Remember the summer McDonald's sold 29 cent hamburgers every Tuesday?  We both babysat - so we would buy enough for lunches on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Judy and her husband Charlie have seen a lot of valleys and gone through so much.  They work hard and are so creative. 



Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Mom and her shoes

Mom has a pair of SAS shoes. They really do help her as far as comfort in walking and ankle support. She loves them. She looks so darn cute when she shows them off.

She hid them. And I mean she hid them.

Not to be found - it was enough to drive me insane!

Well just a bit ago I looked at her feet and she had them on!

I have no clue where they came from

One day I may be in therapy and the dr will ask "why are you here?" And I will say "my mother has these shoes...."

Nope! It's not morning!

It is 9:39 pm. Mom thinks it is morning. I have lights out and TV on low. She is wide awake.

The doctor ok'd an extra Seroquel looks like we need it.

I was able to mow our yard before she got bad and I so need to take a bath but she is too agitated to be left alone.



MOMS WHO ARE IN PAIN...

No doubt, we all have everyday stresses and things that hurt and get in the way.

Read these two blogs - they will put life into perspective for you.  You may have read them or come across them in your blogging world - please pray for both families...the battles are different - but they are hurting.

Lucy's Blog

http://erikandkatekrull.blogspot.com/

Baby Tripp

http://randycourtneytripproth.blogspot.com/



I often question why there is Alzheimer's.  But it really doesn't seem fair that sweet babies fight these battles every day.  God has a plan.  He has a purpose.  We have to trust and to believe.  But I know it must be hard for these moms.  I cannot imagine their pain.

And to my precious friend, Diane - I think of Joshua too.

INSOMNIA

I guess I suffer from it.  Or is it my mind waking me up? 

I read a lot of blogs between 1:00-3:00 am - there are many people up at this time!

But not sleeping is not fun!  I try going to bed later - thinking I won't wake up at this time - but I do.  So I go to bed early - knowing at least I will get a few hours of sleep.

And by the way...I do believe the Cindy Crawford commercials along with Valerie Bertnalli's is on every channel in the middle of the night, middle of the day. 

Another observation.......The shopping channels.....People really decided they need that set of luggage at 2:00 am?

SELF EVALUATION

Self evaluation is a hard thing to do.  To challenge yourself mentally, spritually and emotionally.  I am no where near where I should be in so many areas.

Yesterday I sent an email to a friend - I am not trying to sound pitiful or poor mouth - because God is so good.

But here is part of my self evaluation.  Hopefully I will be so much stronger one day, one week, one month, one year from now.

Mark Gungar on Focus said one time "God does not want you to marry the person who meets all your needs because then there would be no room for Him."


Steve and I have been married four years. I think to all that has happened and hit us. I can see where God has provided and sustained us....me in many ways.

I wonder why I am on this journey - what is the purpose? Maybe One purpose is for God to be glorified, for the kingdom of heaven to be expanded. Another reason I suppose - is my reaction to situations. I thought with being a single mom for 11 years I had pretty much seen it all and such. Or went through it. Boy was I wrong. Never ask "what else Lord?"  Am I to go through this - to be able to help others one day? Am I being molded for something bigger? Or do I need to hush, sit back and absorb more?



These may all sound lofty and grand - because I am tired. I am discouraged. I am tired of worrying. I am literally tired of living paycheck to paycheck with no give in between. I miss being able to do things for the kids. There are needs and yes some wants that I want to be able to supply. I just wanted to scream Saturday when i walked into mom's house......and saw all those white garbage bags. I couldn't even go the grocery store until someone sat with Mom. Those 45 minutes were the only minutes I had to myself all weekend. I was so tired I was sick.


A history............


One Tuesday - September 2000 - Dad attacks mom with a butcher knife (thus beginning our trip into the land of Alzheimer's with him, Sam has bad asthma attack I am in the hospital with him, fortunately dad is in same hospital, I get divorce papers and foreclosure papers. One day -24 hours.






February 2009 - I am married - almost a year. I lose my good paying job. Mom has a heart attack. Kids dad stops paying child support. I get a job and a a part time job - barely making half of what I used to make. Mom's alzheimer advances probably due to heart attack. One month. -28 days actually.


So much can happen in a short length of time - that it feels like a lifetime. There are times I feel like a failure. Then there are times when I am so joyful and happy. But I guess that is life. I must learn to give all to God. The ups and the downs - the ride may be bumpy but the safety belt stronger. There are so many needs - that sometimes I wander if they are actual needs.  I don't need to worry. I don't need to feel guilty for Sam wearing borrowed cleats during football this past spring - he survived. We have a roof over our head, dinner every night, clothes on our backs, everyone is healthy and strong.  So why do I put myself through this?  I just don't know.

 




Monday, June 04, 2012

MOM AND LIGHT BULBS

Before I start I will admit this was a rough weekend with mom.  I am worn out - - on top of it I think I had a stomach bug of sorts last night (though it could have been stress).

Mom was alone for a brief time.  Lesson learned - won't happen again.  She had been doing fine in those little increments of time that allowed me a break, to run errands, etc.  But Saturday - she packed up literally her whole bedroom and bathroom in garbage bags - in one bag she had just band aids and q-tips.

Then I started noticing light bulbs.  She has always had this thing about light bulbs.  She was afraid she wouldn't have any.  I saw light bulbs in every nook and cranny of the house - hidden like Easter Eggs.  Under pillows, in the corner behind the broom, in the bathroom, under pillows (a favorite  hiding spot).  By the time I finished I had found 40 something light bulbs.  Where on earth where she had them beats me -all lights were accounted for - she didn't take any out. 

She never slept.  Oh, she would cat nap - 15 minutes here or there - but never ever slept all weekend.  Thankfully we have child locks on everything.  She sure did wander around all night all weekend (Didn't help that we had storms all night last night)  Right now do I need to call the doctor and ask for additional med at night? I don't want her over medicated - but I don't know if I can keep this up.  Surely not sleeping is not good for her. 

Some good times....

We went to visit my sister - she was so excited to go - she cleaned herself up - put on make up and did her hair.  She had fun.

I made a chocolate cake - her favorite with just confectioners sugar sprinkled on top - she loved it.  Also made her scalloped potatoes - she love them also.

She missed "girl" - "Girl" is Melecia.  She kept waiting for her.  Hard to make her understand Melecia comes Monday-Friday.  I just show her on calendar - she will be here in two more squares....(days)
But what a blessing that she remembers and loves someone. 


Sunday, June 03, 2012

Sleep? Pshaw!

Sleep who needs sleep? Not mom!

She had a rough Saturday. I'm trying to decide on who cried harder..... Me or her. It's a toss up!

When I'm not so drained I will share her antics. By then I will be able to laugh.