What Was I Thinking

really? I try to go see Dad everyday. I am his link to his world. The life he once lived in, loved in, laughed in. I can tell you with all honesty it is the toughest part of my day. I hate to cry. I hate feeling open and vulnerable. Yesterday was hard for me. I had my afternoon coffee fix and prepped a bag to bring to Pops. I kissed my hubby and off I went. Dad was not in a good place. The nurse on duty pulled me aside to inform me that Dad had been grumpy and short (my Mom was grumpy and short but I think she meant Dad was out of sorts ?)

Pops contacted a cold from one of the other patients who likes to kiss the boys and make them cry. There is nothing I can really do about those behaviors so I let Pops be. The nurse I spoke with assured me Dad had been getting cold meds and seemed to be getting better except for his demeanor. She asked me if I had any ideas as to why Pops suddenly seemed angry. I am not sure how much any of you really understand dementia. A person who lives with dementia has their own sense of reality and most likely you are not invited so you have to learn to watch for the signs. Any time my Dad is in pain or has a fever he gets angry, really angry. I informed the nurse that Pops has a history of bladder/urinary problems and infections and sometimes that is enough to send him to Anger Land.

I feel like the outsider now. If pops were home I would have simply called his Dr. and scheduled a urinalysis and a meet and greet to check his vitals. Doctor appointments change when your loved one lives in a nursing home. Someone on staff calls a nurse. The nurse does a quick assessment and then decides whether or not to contact the Dr. or nurse practitioner. Tests were ordered for Dad. I think he is having a urinary tract infection or a flair up with his rheumatoid arthritis.

I left Pops shortly after his supper. I left distracted, angry, scared and plain SAD. I jumped into my Jeep and blindly drove away. Away. Far away. I was nearly into West Boylston before I realized I had no idea where I was going or why I was going. I can’t outrun my Pops’ decline. It is what it is. In my face, part of my life everyday. It sucks. It wears me down and leaves me feeling lonely and vulnerable unable to fix what has gone so wrong.

 

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3 thoughts on “What Was I Thinking

  1. I am sorry that this visit was so emotionally difficult for you. Dementia is beyond challenging to deal with, for the “victim” and the caregiver. I hope your Dad feels better soon and is back to his happy yodelling. In the meantime, make sure you take care of yourself (advice I need to follow myself!).

  2. Visited my dad yesterday and he just went out on us 3 times! The first time Mike and I thought he just died right in front of us! I called Dad! Dad, and he woke up and started laughing! He keeps going in and out of sleep in the middle of talking… so scary, can’t get it out of my mind. I know he’s not long for our world and I can’t stand it!

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