Beginning last Tuesday, dad became disoriented. We can usually measure the depth of his dementia by how many jokes he tells in an hour. He has gone from around a wide palette of oft-repeated jokes too numerous to recount to about 1/2 a joke.
We moved him to Cabrini Hospital where he is today and we are in the process of looking for a rehab facility.
We arrived at the ER at Cabrini around 5 pm last Tuesday and waited until 10:45 before we were able to get him out of the waiting room. Darlene stayed with Dad until 3 AM when they got him into a room.
Ten years ago he never forgot a name and now he doesn’t know where he is.
Exhausting, emotional, and painful.
Mom is at the Assisted Living facility– Marigold Place.
I think a major part of the decline has been his constant care for mom. He did just about everything for her and now his mind has seized up from exhaustion.
The whole week has been filled with appointments, decision, and dilemmas. Dad gets in a gear where his only goal is to get back to Mom. And when Dad gets the thought in his mind, IVs, nurses and bed rails are merely obstacles to that goal. Last night we had an especially difficult time. I was able to call Dennis Phelps and put him of the phone to pray for Dad. It settled him into a peaceful sleep. I get choked up when I call Dennis because he has been such a blessing to our family. When. I hear his voice, memories and emotions rush to the surface
When Dad wakes up, he’s concerned about missing a church service, a game or an engagement. His mind goes back twenty years, it seems. It’s heartbreaking to see him suffer, especially when I know I’m going to have to explain everything to him over and over again.
Yesterday evening he was trying to coach one of the nurses to sing- perhaps looking for a soulful new member of the Foundation singers.
We are having to feed him because he can’t get the food up to his mouth by himself. Plastic urinals, restraining straps and gospel CDs… This is where we live these days with dad.
Mom doesn’t quite understand it either. She has her own issues. And so the rushing, explaining, providing and caring continues. In the midst of it all, I play the movie forward and wonder if I’ll be in this bed in my 80s.
I have so many concerns that I often overwhelmed. Every day is a sprint and a marathon.
I’ll continue to post updates so friends and family can find out how things are going but also as a form of therapy for me. Please pray for Mom and Dad and the family as we travel this road walking Mom and Dad home.