Jump to content



Photo
- - - - -

Adventures in Elder Care


  • Please log in to reply
11 replies to this topic

#1 sarah b.

sarah b.
  • VibeTribe
  • 74,091 posts
  • LocationRockland and Long Island, NY

Posted 14 September 2010 - 12:29 PM

'cause I know I'm not the only one who does some of this. :) (grandma edition, here)

Household modifications:
added railings on both sides of all staircases, as well as a rail along front walk to house.

getting: lifealert thingy ("I've fallen, and I can't get up" ambulance summoner).

toilet seat elevator (yee hah)

Observations: She (age 84) feels cold more/sooner than younger folks do.

trying to encourage autonomy, rather than infantilize/enable any more dependence than absolutely necessary.

framed adult diapers as a normal hygiene product in aging. referred to them as disposable panties. that sounds much better, anyway. (that's for the overnights. will discuss daytime bladder issues. if a liner doesn't cut it, I believe depends makes pads. can get.)

#2 sarah b.

sarah b.
  • VibeTribe
  • 74,091 posts
  • LocationRockland and Long Island, NY

Posted 14 September 2010 - 07:07 PM

the shaken up thing is pretty bizarre for a woman who has been nothing but a freight train.

I taught her how to play a cd on the boom box. placido domingo dance party!

more bizarre is the way she has changed the story re: what happened. my mom found her by the washing machine, which is at least 12 feet from the bottom of the basement stairs. She's telling her friends she fell down the stairs. There's no way she could've fallen down the stairs, made a left, gone around an island of cabinets and landed in front of the washing machine. if she'd fallen down the stairs, she'd've broken her knee and hit her head, not her knee, elbow and shoulder (which is what she hit). my mom said she (my mom) double-checks stuff w/the people she (gram) says stuff about, because sometimes she'll say stuff that's not accurate. I guess that's part of aging. It's kind of disconcerting.

#3 reveur

reveur
  • VibeTribe
  • 779 posts

Posted 14 September 2010 - 11:15 PM

my favs:

labeling the electric tea kettle "do not put on stove" and she (my memere) still melted 3 of them

my mom still has 3 cans of old lady hair mousse in her medicine cabinet (all labeled as well). multiples of pretty much everything.

I used to love finding the four packs of wine under her bed :funny1:

#4 kramer

kramer
  • VibeTribe
  • 7,324 posts

Posted 15 September 2010 - 02:22 AM

i'm SO grateful to still have my grandmother in my life. she's my last grandparent still alive and boy is she still kickin it! i worry about her, sometimes, though. she's been telling the same stories over & over lately, and it has been getting increasingly hard to understand exactly what she's talking about -- she glosses over important details and we have to try to piece together the little bits of the story. oh, and when we play Rummikub (which we play every single time i visit), she always has to ask if a tile is blue or black, as her eyesight isn't what it used to be anymore... she's got some seriously ANCIENT food in the fridge- mostly condiments, labeled from 2007 or so. i have to toss things every time i go to visit. she loves to cook & feed her kids & grandchildren but lately i wonder how safe her cooking is. i do the dishes for her when i go visit, but she tries to get me to sit on the couch so she can do it herself... i don't let her... but i know when none of us are there, she's doing dishes, cooking, putting things on high shelves in closets, doing so many things that are dangerous, and no one is around. she refuses to move out of her apartment and i guess she is still independent enough that she won't allow a nurse or anyone into her home..... most of her stories these days are about her friends' various health problems, or whose funeral she's going to THIS week :( when we drive around town, she'll point out houses and tell me about who used to live there, and how they died. is very sad. she's in her eighties and i hope she sticks around forever... but i know that's impossible, so i really treasure the times we get to spend together.

#5 kramer

kramer
  • VibeTribe
  • 7,324 posts

Posted 15 September 2010 - 02:24 AM

she fell this week, getting out of the elevator. i guess the elevator car wasn't flush with the floor, and she tripped. she's mostly fine... but obviously we're all worried about the next time, KNOCK ON WOOD.

#6 mamapajama

mamapajama
  • VibeTribe
  • 1,133 posts

Posted 15 September 2010 - 03:34 AM

Poise brand pads, Sarah. <3

Also, with everyone's elders, make sure they have throws or sweaters for the warmth thing Sarah mentioned and make sure they are staying hydrated (even with bladder control issues). Rituals like afternoon tea or going out for a smoothie can help. Make drinking a social experience if possible.

#7 sarah b.

sarah b.
  • VibeTribe
  • 74,091 posts
  • LocationRockland and Long Island, NY

Posted 15 September 2010 - 06:23 AM

Thanks. :heart: I tend to get upset about stuff after the fact -- she's back from the hospital, so now I'm okay to let myself be upset about that, but there's a whole other pile of eek called ultra-neediness that blows my mind.

Lots of blankets. She's totally into just sitting on the couch with a blanket on her, right now. Between the sudden-onset frailty, lack of confidence walking (she broke her elbow, not her legs; if she's not sleepwalking, she should be able to walk as well as she did prior, esp w/four-point cane, with which she was sent home).

I can't deal with the deliberate drama. I'm bailing on Friday night and going to see Donna the Buffalo in Fairfield (it's a holiday; that's plenty of synagogue, for me). And on Sunday I'm going to my dad's to help him build an outdoor project (more holiday stuff). The family's getting together Saturday night (it's all lots of holiday stuff). On Friday, Aunt Snoopy:heart: is taking her to the doctor. :clapping: That's a help to my mom.

A lot of what's going on is I feel protective of my mom, and when she's left holding the bag (so to speak), I feel like I need to help/pick up the slack, especially when my freelance schedule affords me the option to. My cats miss me, and I miss me, but I'll see me on Friday at Donna. Also, in the past week, the dad of two high-school friends died (their house was a place where we hung out, and their dad was great). I didn't go down to NC for the funeral 'cause my grandma was in the hospital; I didn't talk to anyone about it, 'cause I didn't want to upset anyone by talking about a parent dying while my grandma was in the hospital. And then tonight I found out that Sensei (w/whom I coach) -- his mom died last week, the day after my grandma went into the hospital. I had texted him and didn't hear from him, so I checked out his fiancee's fb page; some folks posted for her to give him their best. I checked the local paper's online obits. She was buried on Monday (while I was freelancing and my grandma was being discharged).

So something condolencey to do for them. I've been in touch w/my friends whose dad died and the friend who was able to make it to the funeral.

And then there's just regular job hunt stuff, but, that's nothing new. Friday can't come soon enough! ((donna the buffalo)) And sorry to miss folks at wormtown, this weekend. If I could clone me, I'd totally be there.

Regardless of all of what's going on, I'm incredibly grateful my mom's doing well and that all of my functional relatives have been super nice to each other. I just want my grandma to snap out of the needy/ drama/ changing her story shit. It's a total bug-out. Maybe I need to change how much I let it effect me. That would probably be far more constructive, and a better use of my energy. ((y'all)) ((me))

#8 sarah b.

sarah b.
  • VibeTribe
  • 74,091 posts
  • LocationRockland and Long Island, NY

Posted 15 September 2010 - 10:13 AM

I made a twitter account for her (at bubbie told me (no spaces, at symbol)). I figure she can share her wisdom and I can preserve it for posterity, or something. It's something we can do. :yawn:

#9 In A Silent Way

In A Silent Way
  • VibeTribe
  • 27,011 posts
  • LocationShoreline, CT

Posted 15 September 2010 - 03:48 PM

Shitmybubbesays?

(((sarah b.)))

#10 sarah b.

sarah b.
  • VibeTribe
  • 74,091 posts
  • LocationRockland and Long Island, NY

Posted 16 September 2010 - 04:53 PM

yep. :lol: thanks, d. I told her to cut the shit, and she has, a little.

#11 ramonfernandez

ramonfernandez
  • VibeTribe
  • 1 posts

Posted 12 August 2011 - 01:56 AM

I made a twitter account for her (at bubbie told me (no spaces, at symbol)). I figure she can share her wisdom and I can preserve it for posterity, or something. It's something we can do. :yawn:


Wow. What a great idea! :) This would be fun reading her tweets. I'm looking forward to her stories. :P do you mind sharing?

#12 sarah b.

sarah b.
  • VibeTribe
  • 74,091 posts
  • LocationRockland and Long Island, NY

Posted 14 August 2011 - 05:33 AM

It was a great idea that didn't get off the ground. I'd forgotten what I called it. I'm not sure if I can remember the password. rereading what I wrote almost a year ago is certainly interesting.