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Old 11-21-2006, 02:16 PM   #1
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home for Thanksgiving from NH

good afternoon. It's been several months since I have been on this board. I placed my mom who suffers from vascular dementia in a nursing home back in Aug 06. Althought the hardest decision i have ever made, she is safe and seems to have settled in.

I am wondering about bringing her home for the day on Thanksgiving. I am fearful she will become disorientated, or refuse to return to the Nursing home or how she will do in general.

I am asking what have been other's experiences with this situation.

 
Old 11-21-2006, 03:50 PM   #2
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needtoescape HB User
Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

Dolores,
From what I've learned from others, bringing the person home for one day like that can be disastrous for those very reasons you mentioned - becoming disoriented, confused, stirring up the old feelings of not wanting to be at the NH, etc. I'd suggest having the family eat with your mom at the NH. I did that a lot with my FIL who had AD. For a very reasonable price, I could arrange for me and my husband to have a meal with my FIL. He enjoyed having company at his table and it didn't take him out of his routine. You could always have the meal with your mom at the NH at their regular meal time and then have another family get together at your home later in the day (without your mom).

Also, I've heard lots of the board members talk about the person with AD becoming upset in settings with lots of people talking at once, etc.

Good luck. I'm sure others with experiences will chime in.

 
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Old 11-21-2006, 04:39 PM   #3
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Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

Hello,
I brought my mom home for Christmas day after she'd been living in a home for those with A.D. and vowed I'd never do it again. I'm not sure whom it was more traumatic for when it came time to return her at the end of the day. She did not want to leave. The day itself was difficult, too. Her attention span is short and everything took longer than what she was comfortable with.

I learned that it is easier to visit her than take her out anywhere. Whenever I've had to take her out, even for an appointment, when it is time to return, it is like taking her to the home for the very first time. She doesn't recognize it, doesn't realize she has been staying there, etc. It is all new and strange, and I'm sure, somewhat frightening. When it's time for me to go, she wants to come with me. So I just don't take her out any more. This has been my experience. Perhaps it is different for others. Good luck. Tsohl

 
Old 11-21-2006, 06:40 PM   #4
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Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

thank you all for your comments. I visited mom today and I had another family member encouraging me to take her out--she was taking her mom out and informed me another person was taking their family member out. She said" if you can't handle her just bring her back early". I really felt the pangs of guilt since I haven't decided what to do. I know it will be lots of work in the midst of preparing the meal to keep up with her...she walks constantly but I want to be realistic...do I have hopes of seeing visions of my "mom". I know last year she had trouble sitting still and carrying conversations with others (my MIL had died in Sept and my mom kept asking my FIL about her - like where is she; why is she not here...it was really painful to see my FIL's face as you could see how painful the holiday was without her This is despite the fact he knew my mom's mental state)

I appreciate your sharing of experiences. This board was and is a lifesaver for all of us. I will continue "mulling' this decision.

Thanks

 
Old 11-22-2006, 10:33 AM   #5
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WasFatNoMore HB UserWasFatNoMore HB User
Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

I took my grandmother out once or twice a week. Either to go to eat or to my brothers. She never gave me a hard time. Once, however, she did ask me, in the car, if I could take her back to her apartment instead of "the place". I told her I wasn't allowed. She said "yeah they would arrest you and I would still have to go back". But she knew that my Mother had the legal authority and not me, so maybe that was why she never gave me a hard time.

On the other hand, after she passed, my brother said that he didn't think it was a good idea for me to take her out. Apparently the family discussed it without me. He said it was not a recomended way to do things. But since she never gave me a hard time, it got her out and seemed to make me happy to get her out ( I was not happy about the nursing home decsion) they let me do it. They never let on that they were leary of our outings while she was alive. I am glad I did because she only lived about five months in the NH.

Each case is individual and maybe I was just lucky.

 
Old 11-23-2006, 05:29 PM   #6
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Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

Speaking of taking someone with AD out to eat.... we took my aunt out to a pizza buffet......NOT a good idea! After we finished our meal, she walked up to the buffet and proceeded to load up on pizza - she wrapped it all in napkins and stuffed it into her purse! We tried to tell her that wasn't what you do at a buffet but she kept saying "Well, I'm paying for it" and didn't understand. I whispered to the waitress that my aunt has AD and the waitress was so kind and understanding. I was embarressed up until that point. We decided not to take her back to another pizza buffet! Good luck, whatever you decide to do! C

 
Old 11-24-2006, 05:04 AM   #7
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Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

Quote:
Originally Posted by cyt
Speaking of taking someone with AD out to eat.... we took my aunt out to a pizza buffet......NOT a good idea! After we finished our meal, she walked up to the buffet and proceeded to load up on pizza - she wrapped it all in napkins and stuffed it into her purse! C
That reminds me of an incident several years ago at the restaurant we own. An elderly lady came in and ordered a hamburger. We also had a small salad bar at the time and she proceeded to take a tray and fill the entire tray with all the items on the salad bar--no plates, no forks--just a big mountain of greens, potato salad, cottage cheese, etc.

We figured she had dementia and smoothed over the situation as well as we could without upsetting her. However, on her way out she stopped by the counter and complained about the price of the hamburger. Her son placed her in a nursing home shortly after that incident.

Jane

 
Old 11-24-2006, 04:10 PM   #8
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Jess22 HB User
Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

Hi to all and HAPPY HOLIDAYS,
I decided agianst judgement of my mom's doctor etc. to bring my mom
home for the holidays since I am off work until Monday. I too feel always the pangs of guilt and frankly maybe just selfishly I want to be with my mom more.
I work alot at a bank and I have alot of stress and so I dont get to spend as much time with her as I would like. Everytime I visit her she wants me to take her "home" and she even asks me if she can live with me and she'll give me her check. She doesnt remember that she lived with me for two years prior to going
in the NH. I brought her home the first time and she did just fabulous. I had no problem with her accept for the crazy talking and repeating. She did not remember
my home, her room, her dog (which we adopted) and she did not really know where she was in general. The visit went well the next day I told her we were
going for a ride and she had no clue I was taking her back. She did fine. The next visit home she ate to much got sick and so I took her back that same night I could tell she was very nervous. This time will possibly be my final and so I feel very sad about that. My mom is gone to me now and I cant believe how dumb I really am. The entire time she has been here she has called us differant things, my oldest son she calls Jim which is my husband, last night she was nervous and while talking to me and my sister and holding my hand she kept saying I think Jessica is coming to get me, or she literally would say while looking right at me Where did jesse go???? She has been nervous and has vocally got up and said I dont know where I am. I dont recognise this place. When I hugged her and explained she was with me etc. she just said okay where do you want me to go? She got up earlier walked to the front door and started out it in the dark in her gown. This is it, she is no trouble she holds my hands, she kisses me and she talks sometimes sensible but for the most part she talks over and over repeating a few sentances. She does not obviously know me anymore although she can look right at me and call me by name at times. I now am assured that she knows she had two girls but she dont "know" us as she use too. I feel very hurt now because Im sure my stupidity will make things hard for her tommorow when she goes back. I have done all I can and that is see that she has a nice private room in the best NH I could find around my area. I wont bring her out agian. That breaks my heart and I feel so alone now to finally realize it. I say dont bring her out, it's too hard for them and even though we want our moms back they are gone to us in a way we can never get back. So at christmas time we will go there period. I know exactly how you feel it's been ten months now mom's been in the NH and I hate it every day but it's time for me to get a grip......
jess

 
Old 11-24-2006, 05:17 PM   #9
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tsohl HB User
Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

My mom has been in a home for those with dementia since Jan. of '02. Very shortly after she starting living with us, she became disoriented. She thought she was at a bed and breakfast...would come downstairs every morning with her purse and would try to pay my husband for breakfast. I thought she knew me though, until one day I said my name and she said "Isn't that interesting. My daughter is named (that same name)." After we moved her into the home she has known me ever since. She can call me by name, will sometimes tell others I am her daughter, etc. But when I would take her away from the place, she'd lose track of who I was again. For whatever reason, she does better when she just stays at the home. Weird.

 
Old 11-25-2006, 11:03 AM   #10
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Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

Morning!

My experience was similar to Jess'. I brought Mom home in July while my daughter was visiting from out-of-state. It actually went pretty well, other than all the repetition. She remembered all of my adult children but constantly asked the "grandchildren's names," though she's seen them many times.

For Thanksgiving, though, we were going to my son's home. We've lived in AZ for 30 years, but anytime I take her out, she believes she is magically back in Texas where we lived for 5 years (30 years ago).

So she immediately thought she was in Texas and confused why someone in Texas would have southwest decor in their home, cactus, etc. She kept saying I need to take these cactus back to AZ with me, that's where they belong. And, the weather was so nice, almost like AZ.

She recognized my oldest son (35), but never recognized my youngest (32). And everytime a male (any male) entered the room she would ask, Are you S? I want to see S (my youngest son.)

As I drove her back that evening, she became totally frustrated and crying because she couldn't find her keys and thought we wouldn't be able to get into her home. I told her we didn't need keys, and that only confused her more. She was crying that all of her neighbors must be calling and calling wondering where she went.

She called me first thing the next morning, and I was surprised that she even remembered the experience, but she said, "You know, I really enjoyed myself. But next time we do that, why don't we do it with family so I will know every one."

It felt so sad to me that she had no idea she WAS with her family.

My daughter-in-law had asked that I bring some of my older picture albums, she wanted to see pictures of my sons when they were younger. At one point Mom was looking at them and said, "OH......This is me."

She was nearly squealing and I went to look. Yes, it is you! I said. Then she got very quiet and said, "But who is that man with me?" He was her husband for 15 years. He passed away 7 years ago.

Very very sad........
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Old 11-25-2006, 04:52 PM   #11
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Re: home for Thanksgiving from NH

Oh yes, that is so sad! We go through that with my FIL on a temporary basis now and then when he has his "spells" we call them, which is really mini strokes. The other day he had one and didn't remember his granddaughter was gone off to college (something he normally talks about all the time) The brain sure is weird - how it misfires at times and then the next day he will be back to his old self (or I should say his new self because the mini strokes have caused him to have dementia and he can't make new memories). I hope he doesn't have AD because then he would get stuck in the "spell" stage and wouldn't remember any of us. He will be 87 on Jan. lst - he's always saying he's the luckiest man alive. I'm lucky to have him too! Take care all. C

 
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