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Old 04-30-2009, 05:21 AM   #1
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Unhappy Looking for NH for Mom

Hello Friends,

I've been away for a few days because I've been sick and upset over Mom. I've sat here and tried to tell you all what has happened in the last week but I find that its impossible without crying so I'll make this short......I hope.

Mom has declined of course and now her Dr. says its time for more care. My sisters and I went all day Monday looking for "a place for Mom". Not a good day. Sis #1 will not admit that Mom needs more care now so I feel that the day was wasted. She wants to wait........wait for what I don't honestly know. She is helping alot more than she ever has because I'm sick and I'm done running to Moms everyday. I'm going to have surgery Tuesday for polyps in my bladder and we are not sure what else is needed. I've been going to Dr. after Dr. all week. Today I'm going for pre-testing and Sis #1 is taking Mom to the Dr. for the first time. My poor little Mom is only happy when one of us are there. She has no idea what to do if we're not with her. And of course the phone calls are numerous throughout the day if we aren't there. She's lost really..........just lost and sad. I could go into details but its not necessary because you all know how are Lo's are in the later stages. Also the tears will start and I won't be able to type.

Just wanted you to know whats happening in my life at the moment. I love you all and I'll get back to you on what the Dr. finds when I know something. I feel that Mom is due for a hospital stay soon. The Dr. wants to transition her to the NH at that time. Of course if Sis#1 agrees..........I think something will have to happen before she will let go. Until then she had better be prepared to help and do more than what she has done in the past because I am just not able any longer. Mom and I have the same GP and he is just a wonderful Dr. to us both. Yesterday he said "You know I care about Mom but your done running there do you understand me"? Yep, I sure do.

Love to all,
Chris

 
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Old 04-30-2009, 05:55 AM   #2
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Chris

We sure missed you my friend. BUT here's the scoop-de-poop.

No one ever admits that its time until they have burden all onto themselves. Your doctor has put you on R&R, so if you need a note to give to sister, get one. Your health is as important as hers.

Cut this part out and print it. Let your sister read this:

Dear Sis
We all know that is a very, very difficult decision to put a loved one in a facility. Try not to think of it as a NH, but a loving, caring, nurturing environment where our loved ones can enjoy their last remaining time under the watching, caring eyes of people who get to go home after their shift is over. You never do. You are 24/7 a daughter and when you are there for Mom, it becomes 24/7 of caregiving.

Do you know what it was like when you brought a new baby home. When did you ever think you'll be able to take a bath again -- Do you remember the times when you wondered "did I eat?", When was it that you could go to the bathroom without someone banging on the door yelling "I want you now!!".

Well, all that will come back to revisit you very shortly. anyone who is a spouse or a child of someone ill with this dreaded disease will find that they no longer have a life -- you fool yourself into thinking you do, but you don't.

Especially if they suffer sundowning or manic episodes. If this hasn't happened, its not pretty, believe us all here when we tell you.

So dear sister -- Chris isn't doing this to make her life easier, because you will all always care for the loved one living away from you all -- but she's admitted to herself and the doctor's have told her -- its time.

Please do not become the non-supporter of this issue because it will just cause more angst than it has to be. If you can't be part of the decision, please, please just nod your head and say "do whatever you think is best" and let it go.

We've all walked that walk. It does no good to have your head in the sand. If you feel that you can and want to take on that responsibility 24/7, then do it.

Your
CaringSister54

 
Old 04-30-2009, 01:24 PM   #3
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Chris, my thoughts will be with you as you have surgery on Tuesday. I am scheduled for my operation on June 8 and I am already worrying and fearing it ... so I can feel with you. I am sure it will come out OK, but we all hate things like that. Mine is a matter of 2 hernia like protrusions into my vag.

Your sister will finally agree - if she is rational. Just do what your doctor says, stay away more and more, and Mom will get into the care she needs.

Good luck in both matters!

love,

Martha

 
Old 04-30-2009, 01:44 PM   #4
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

good luck with your surgery. there is no choice in the matter with your mom. your sister has to come around. i hate that you are crying, but i guess i do it quite a bitt, also.

 
Old 04-30-2009, 02:00 PM   #5
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

It breaks my heart to know how sad you are. How tormented you must be thinking of your dear dear mom afraid and feeling alone.

I can't even imagine what it will be like when my turn comes to watch my mom go through the stage that your mom is in. It scares me to think about it.

As for your sister, I just don't know. Sometimes I just have to shake my head.
What does it take for some people to see the truth??

Gather all the strength you need from all of us here who love you and hang on to it. Think of us holding your hand through surgery and you'll get through it just fine. Think positively. Don't give in to the fear.

Let us know how things are going. And don't stay away so long...we need you, you need us.

Love, Meg

 
Old 04-30-2009, 05:44 PM   #6
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Chris, you are as determined as your Mom!! But there does come a time when you have to take care of yourself first. That time has come for you. I have been concerned about you and have missed you here. Yet I understand. My thoughts and prayers will go with you Tursday. I hope all the news is good news. After the surgery you take the time you need to heal yourself. You are no good to anybody unless you are whole. So this is Chris's time!!!

You said that something would have to happen before sister 1 would agree to Mom being moved to a nursing home. I believe that may have happened. With you incapacitated then sister 1 will have to do what you have done.... and you better be incapacitated. This is your opportunity to change the direction of your Mom's care. Truly, it is easy to be in denial when you are not the one doing the work.

With all of your Mom's medical problems and her confusion, it is time for something different. This is for your Mom but secondary it is also for you. You will find the right place and it will happen. Mom will be better for you and you will be better for it. Until then let sister deal with Mom and you deal with yourself!!

As for sister 1, she's trying. When she agrees that Mom needs more care she is accepting the fact that Mom is progressing in the disease and that you girls are no longer enough. That's a very hard pill for many to swallow. Sometimes it is easier to bury your head in the sand and pretend not to know. Exposure to reality will many times take the blinders off. Help Sister 1 by giving her the exposure she needs

Know you are in my throughts and prayers..... and know from one that has been there..... as hard as this decision is to accept and put into action... it is the best for all involved.... especially Mom!

Love, deb

 
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Old 04-30-2009, 07:35 PM   #7
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Dearest Chris,
Sending big hugs out to you today.....
You know over the last few weeks, when I was dealing with my grandma's passing at the same time as my son being born, all of you wonderful people told me I had to focus on myself and my son, and let others help and deal with grandma. I did that, although part of my heart was with my grandma the whole time. I knew that although I worried for her and my mom every day that I needed to take that time for myself and my son, to get through his coming into the world.
I am giving you the same advice now that was given to me, and that was good advice. You need to take this time now for "you" dear friend, and for "your" health. Take this break, and ensure you are healthy and well, and take care of yourself.....your heart will still be with your mom, but you just need this time for yourself.....it will be okay, you need to do it. Sad to say God doesnt give us just one problem to deal with at a time, sometimes they come all piled up on top of each other, but sometimes you just have to pick your battles, and right now, your health is at the top of the list.
I've watched my uncle let himself go for my grandma's sake and it got him nowhere..........please take care of yourself..........your mom would want you to be well.....

Will be praying for your surgery to go smoothly, and for you to be "well"........
Praying for both you and Martha.....we all need you to take care of yourselves.....

Love, Caroline xo

 
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Old 04-30-2009, 10:20 PM   #8
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Dear Friends,

Thank you all so very much for your caring and concern and most especially for your support. It means so much to me to be able to reach out to friends who understand how tired I am of the whole "caregiver" mess that my family is going through. Sister thinks that she has it all under control. She took Mom for Jobst stockings after the Drs. apt. She didn't know that I had purchased the same thing for Mom two years ago and it only lasted two days then Mom refused to put them on. Still in her top dresser drawer. She knows very little about what its like to care for Mom for over two days but she's trying and for that I'm grateful. I'll take any help I can get.
Mom called 3 times before I left this morning wanting to know where she was and to tell me that her leg hurt and I should come to see her. I told her that I would tell Sis. Thats hard to do but a little easier than I thought it would be.

I spent 6 hours at the hospital for testing. What a tiring thing to do, just sit there waiting, then a test, then wait for another hour. Then a test. It feels like I ran a race and all I did all day was sit on my behind.
I requested a spinal and they agreed. I'm just not comfortable going under general anesthesia any longer.



Dear Martha,

I've read about your surgery and I understand your fear. It sounds more complicated than mine. You have alot on your mind now getting yourself prepared for your own surgery and recovery and you still took the time to give me your support........your very kind and I thank you. I'll be praying for you as June 8 grows closer. We're both going to be fine Martha. Then we'll be good as new... Well maybe not new but a far sight better than we are now.

I missed you all. Again, thank you for all of your wonderful support.
Love, Chris

 
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Old 05-01-2009, 05:26 AM   #9
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Dear Chris

While you vent to us about sister's lack of knowledge in caring for your Mom, please don't do what my sister did to me and make someone feel stupid and worthless.

My Sister would stick her head in and say "you have to watch Mom, I need to go out!" and before I could get next door, she was in the car pulling away. I had no idea if Mom ate, or didn't -- took her medicine, or didn't -- etc.

So Mom would just sit in the living room with me while I read or watched TV. I couldn't really talk with her other than to put everything into a yes or no situation that she could answer and was never sure if she understood enough to give the right answer.

Then sister would walk back in about 2 - 3 hours later and say "okay thanks, what did you give her for lunch?" I'd reply "lunch?" you didn't say she didn't eat. She was eating when I looked in earlier and her reply "that was breakfast!!!" Oh God, you didn't give her lunch?? Thanks alot.

I went home kicking myself for that. But I also was not aware of what food Mom was allowed to eat and what she wasn't allowed to eat for her problems related to gall stones, diverticulitis, heital hernia, etc. Then I'd get mad and start slamming things because I'd say to my kids "If only my sister would plan before she runs out!".

Sister never planned. It would've been so easy if she made a sandwich and wrapped it and just said, "I'm running to the store, at 12:30, give Mom the sandwich I made with a little tea, etc". But NO, she'd just say "watch Mom, I have to go out" and she'd be gone. I hated it and her because of all this.

So please if sister bought 10 pairs of stockings even though you had them in the drawer, just say "thanks" and move on. Please don't make her feel that she doesn't know or wouldn't know how to take care of her mother. No one gave you a book when you started either. Just make light suggestions only when asked -- offer to give her tips if she wants them, otherwise stay silent but SUPPORTIVE.

Please don't make her feel like a jerk like my sister did me occasionally.

 
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Old 05-01-2009, 06:06 AM   #10
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Dear Caring,

Thank you for your advice and caring about how sister feels. She is the oldest and believe me I would never make her feel stupid. She has a strong bond with Mom, as we all do. If the truth be told she yells at Sister #3 and me when she is frustrated about anything concerning Mom. I have to tell her to stop yelling. LOL Being the oldest she is respected because of how she cared for us when we were growing up. We're very close.

Thank you again for your words of wisdom Caring I will watch what I say to her. I never thought of making her feel like a jerk. But I guess thats possible if I come on like I'm the only one who can care for Mom properly.

Love,Chris

 
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Old 05-02-2009, 05:41 PM   #11
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

I am so sorry for what you are dealing with. I placed my grandmother in a NH in January after she broke her hip after caring for her at home for 5 years. The situation had become so difficult that I knew even before her fall that something had to be done, but I kept putting it off until fate took the decision out of my hands.

If you are the primary caregiver, the decision to place her in a facility should be yours and yours alone. You have to stand your ground. It's YOUR health and sanity at stake. The stress you've been under can't have been healthy. I know, because I lived it for years. It makes me angry that well meaning relatives think they know what's best when they're not the ones shouldering the burden. Several years before my grandmother's fall, I was set to put her in a NH, but my uncle, her son, who lives 600 miles away put such a terrible guilt trip on me that I did not go through with it.
I think that in many cases the relative that objects to the NH placement is dealing with their own guilt issues, and they project that onto the caregiver.

Many times we think we are doing our loved ones a favor by keeping them at home, but we're really not. If they have gotten to the point that they're confused and fearful at home they are not getting any benefit by being there. Most nursing homes are really nice places, staffed by caring people . They don't deserve the bad rep they get. Most people who object to them haven't even spent much time around one. You've done what you can, you have your own health and your own life to think about. You can still see your loved one and be involved in her life after she's in the NH, without all of the other negative emotions involved when you're living together.

One other thing: If the doctor says it's time, it's time. It is much easier sending someone to a NH from the hospital than it is from home. I wish you the best of luck.

Joel

 
Old 05-02-2009, 10:26 PM   #12
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Chris, you have been on my mind today.... Hope all is going well in your search and with you!?

Love, deb

 
Old 05-03-2009, 03:40 AM   #13
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Well said Joel, "well meanng relatives who think they know best."

Strangely they are always far away and they never have the time to do what they expect YOU to do - keep the AD sufferer at home!

Yes, NHs have an undeserved bad reputation, probably based on the old age homes of many decades ago where they were just left to sit around and die. Now they are more like a summer camp, with activities every day, opportunities to make friends, good medical and physical care, a house doctor who keeps an eye on drugs, Mom's place even had a hairdresser who came in regularly to do haircuts, permanents and manicures.

Anyone who tries to make you feel guilty is so very wrong.

Love,

Martha

 
Old 05-03-2009, 05:32 AM   #14
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Chris,
When you come to that fork in the road Nursing Home Vs Status quo it is a very hard decision of which way to go. You want so very much to leave things as they are with the hopes things will be fine BUT you know inside things are not fine that she needs a different level of care. It is so hard to actually make that decision and do the final paperwork to get things rolling in that direction. I myself think if you have a second person in aggreance it does make it a heck of alot easier then dealing with someone who doesn't agree. But the person that is bearing the weight of all the care is the one that needs to make the decision. Only because it is their health and well being that is being jeopordized.
I am basiscally in the same position as you. I feel my Mom definately would benefit from being in a Nursing Home now BUT my Dad who is the primary caregiver to her does not want to make that final step. Although, he tells me many times he doesn't think he can care for her anymore . That is when I will hand him the paperwork and tell him then you had better start filling this out. My thoughts are with you during this transition.

Love Pauline

 
Old 05-03-2009, 07:20 AM   #15
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Re: Looking for NH for Mom

Hello to all,

The NH question has been put on the back burner yet again. Sister #1 says that Mom doesn't "belong" in a NH yet. "OK whatever you say Sis your the oldest and I can't do this without you". She is helping much more than she ever has in all of these past 19 years that I have taken care of Mom. She has had two hip replacements, knee replacement, numerous abdominal surgeries and for 3 years Sis refused to believe that the dementia was anythng more that age related forgetfullness. Whatever...............

Sis never came to help me. She worked don't ya know and she was just too busy. After all I didn't work outside of the home so I had more time to devote to Mom. Sis #3 did do her best to help whenever she could. I could always call her and she'd be right there but she also worked. OK I'm done ranting I feel better just getting that off my chest. I need to let that part of our past go and I'm working on it, I truly am. It just boils up every once in a while. Sis know's I'm not well and she is trying and like I said before I'm very grateful for her help now. Forgiveness is easy for me. I love her. Forgetting how things were all of those years seems to be harder to do because I'm so tired of it all.

I'm dreading this surgery on Tuesday I know its because I'm afraid of what they'll find. I'm trying not to concentrate on that but not doing a very good job. I think I need to see Mom today. She won't be told anything about me of course but I think I'll feel better just spending the day with her .

Love to all and thanks for listening to my rambling....... again.
Chris

 
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