Saturday, February 5, 2011

successful day

Breakfast in bed, higher "throne" on the toilet, TV, nap, lunch in bed, nap. 
Made a few phone calls and emails and found a bedside potty chair.  The sweet couple from church who brings food almost every week, Ruby and Walter, had an unused chair and brought it over, along with their dog, Bailey.  Bailey is a shi'tsu and well behaved.  She hopped right up on the bed with John and gave lots of love.   John was resting before Gail came over with her dog, Scooter.
Scooter is a border collie and likes sitting on the couch with us.  [John got up for their visit.] While Gail was here, Sharon and Marshall came, as did Betsy.  Betsy brought a shower head.  We tried it out and it doesn't leak.  We'll use it instead of the one the nurse brought, but I'll keep hers as a back-up. 
Sharon and Marshall changed the shower curtain and I cut the old one to put under a rug under the  potty chair.  We're figuring it out as we go.
They brought John Whataburger and he ate one and saved one for dinner. 
John christened the potty chair and can get on it with one step.  He's even amazed at his decline.

What day is it really?  John stayed confused today for some reason.  He asked Sharon what day it was and couldn't believe it was Saturday.  It didn't help that Andy Griffith came on in the evening, then NCIS, then 48 Hours Mystery; all shows that come on NOT on Saturday.  He stayed up until 10 p.m. feeling good. 
I washed his legs and feet with warm water and rubbed them down with lotion this morning.  It felt great to him and relaxed him.  I did it again when he got in the bed tonight.  He could hardly hold his eyes open.  Trying to head off the leg jerk/spasms he had last night.  I can hear him snoring and he didn't take a P.M. yet. 

Found out from Ruby and Walter that if you call HPD and tell them someone has fallen and you can't get them up, they'll send an officer to help.  Good to know, especially if it happens late at night. 

Today has been a good day.

Friday, February 4, 2011

walker, shuffle, march

Yesterday.  Better day.  John got around by himself quite well and stayed awake most of the day.  The nurse dropped off a shower head and we gave it a try.  John likes it.  We didn't hose down the bathroom too badly.  I've noticed a weird action.  When I bathe John on the left side, his right hand mimics my actions, not quite touching my hand.  It's as tho his brain knows what that hand should be doing and does it on auto-pilot.  Haven't mentioned it to him.  He doesn't realize he's doing it.  Same thing when I dry him off.  And when his right hand holds something, he doesn't let go.  He thinks he does but usually I have to pry the towel, my hand, hat from him.

the chinese shuffle
That's what I call the way John walks when he's tired.  Short, quick steps.  His right foot can't go far, so the left one doesn't go far.  I remind him to slow down.  He'll stop, think about what he's doing, and go back to "normal."  He also marched with his right leg several times and the exaggeration of the movement kept him from dragging it.  But again, he doesn't remember to do it often.

Rough night
John woke up around 12:30 with an awful headache.  He took 2 p.m.'s, which is odd because he usually fights taking something.  He moaned for about 20 minutes until the pills kicked in.  He slept but restlessly.  Jumped, pushed, talked in his sleep. 
This morning we had b'fast and I headed to the bath.  I told him "do not get off the couch while I'm in there."  Before I got out, I could hear him snoring.  Slept about an hour and a half.  Didn't remember falling asleep.  He asked how long he slept, what time was it, but couldn't understand.  I ended up telling him Andy Griffith was over, Family Feud was over, and now it's Let's Make a Deal.  got that

He likes using the bathroom at the other end of the house, of course.  This means we go thru the living room, piano room, kitchen, dining room.  The sink is in front of the toilet and he can pull himself up with it.  He actually used the walker with me beside him after he woke up and ate again.  He kept straddling the right leg of the walker because he tends to lean that way.  We made it to the dining room and he started leaning over.  almost timber
He sat in a chair for a minute then finished the 4 steps to the bathroom.  Took the walker back to the couch.  much smoother

Now he's asleep in bed.  I watched the redwing black birds run the other birds from the feeders.  It's been an active bird morning.

John's mom called yesterday and the doctors have given his dad 4 months.  I don't think he'll make it that long.  He's going every day this week for the shot that boosts his blood.  No transfusions since the hospital.  He's very weak and sleeps most of the time.  John's brother, Tim, is planning to come to Daytona in about a month for 4 days.  Might make it up here but probably not.  This is all if his boss lets him.

race to the end for those two
Two of three meals in bed today.  Several hours sleeping.  Sat on the couch twice.  Wore him out.  Used the walker all day and is getting better at it.  Need to pull out the Hospice book.  We may be on the grid now.    ugh

Remembering Vickie.  4 years gone
Will this post ever end???
This afternoon, Betsy from school came by with a basket of sunshine filled with chocolates and a mini rose bush.  There were several cards from friends at school.  As we talked, the subject of John falling came up.  I told her about the big crash/bang, and she said if he ever went down and I couldn't get him up to call her and she and her husband would come. [they live nearby]
10:15 p.m.'ish:  John needs to use the bathroom and chooses the closest one.  He also chose to use the walker to get there, but when he lets go of it to get to the toilet, he gets extremely wobbly.  Tonight, he just slid right down the wall onto the toilet [pants on].  When he tried to get up, he went down to the floor instead.  We tried everything to get him up.  He started scooting and rolling himself back to the bedroom and I thought, 'well this is getting him to the room but then what??'.  I couldn't get him to rest and try later so I called Betsy.  She was "disoriented" as she put it later, but true to promise, she and her husband came on over.  By then it was 10:30.  Bob lifted John right up and got him in bed.  Besides it being late, it was raining again.  They were gracious and said call if I needed help again.  I am so very blessed.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

red flags are flying

another marker day
John has had a very hard time getting around.  His gait is off and his right foot barely comes off the floor. He's also slept most of the day.  This is a first.  breakfast/TV/nap/lunch/nap/visit with Mama /nap/dinner/news/nap/TV/bed
And this is snoring sleep, not just resting with his eyes closed.

The nurse came this morning.  John's blood pressure was 130/80; lungs clear.  She was surprised at how large the bulge has grown.  We think a detachable shower head would help along with the shower chair.  The nurse is bringing us one tomorrow along with more non-stick pads.  larger ones
I also asked for a handicap parking permit.  John agreed we walked too far at Publix the other day. 
**interesting side note:  temporary car tags are $15; permanent ones are free**

Mama came over for a few hours.  An old friend from church brought over eggs and muffins.  She was volunteering with the local thrift store that also gives away food. 
Mama asked John if he ever uses his walker and he told her no.  He said he might need it one day. 
sooner than we all know

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Tuesday Tuesday Tuesday

As usual anymore, I was running late this morning when Mama got here.  I had an 11:15 appointment for my "head shot" for the Tally Mag Springtime quote contest I won.  Or am one of many winners.  It was 11:17 when I went through their door.  Thought it would be a receptionist with a pocket digital camera, but it was a real photographer with a nice digital camera, umbrellas that flash--the whole shooting match.  He told jokes the whole time and took about 15 shots.  I kept closing my eyes because the batteries in the camera were low, and by the time he'd click, it was time to blink again.  He said, "Don't you know I charge $20 every time you close your eyes?"  So I opened my eyes wide and kept them open.  He said, "No, no!  Don't do that."  He was a hoot.  It was great fun.

I ran errands; post office, Publix, my bank, the salon.  Have put only 100 miles on my car in over 2 weeks.  Usually I'd put that much on going back and forth to work in a week. 

Mama brought us a chicken pot pie.  Yummy.  Nothing exciting the rest of the day.  Last night we stayed up until 11 p.m. watching John Wayne in "The Cowboys."  John liked it and followed it well.

Tonight, Jennifer, my sister-in-law called.  She is worried about John's mom and how she'll handle it after their dad dies.  Gloria didn't know how to use the "pay at the pump" to get gas while Mr. John was in the hospital.  She's learning how to pay bills, is concerned that she can't keep up the house; etc.  It must be because of where I am right now, but I can't feel the urgency or concern that Jennifer feels.  Guess I have my own issues and can't consider taking on more.  Glad she's willing to handle it.  Jennifer offered to come from Idaho and help Gloria learn how to do things on her own, but she'd have to bring the baby and 4 year old.  They also offered for Gloria to come up there for a while until she gets her head straight after Mr. John passes.  We'll see what she decides.

John flinches when he touches his right forearm on the table or if I touch it.  I told the nurse today about his fall.  She'll check it out when she comes in a day or two.  It's bruised but he moves it [as much as he can].  He got around fairly well today.
If I change the heater one degree, he can tell.  It's been near 70 degrees for a couple of days but the heat runs and runs.  Tried bumping it down a degree or two, but within a few hours, John said he was freezing.  I put the thermostat back where it's been.  He's good now.

Monday, January 31, 2011

crash bang

John took his first real fall this morning.  He's ok.
He was on the couch and got up, then turned around to get his pillow.
I was on the toilet of course, and the next thing I heard was
several things falling to the floor and finally an 'umph.'
I rushed in the living room and his head was almost behind
the tv table, the tv was almost on the floor in the opposite
direction, the plugs had been knocked out of the socket, and
I'm not sure what else. 
John scraped his forearm on something.  It barely broke the
skin.  There's a knot on his wrist bone.  He rolled over and
laid on the floor for a while.  I put his pillow under his head.
After he calmed down, he got up and went to bed.

Later when I asked him what happened, he said, "You know
the car over there [his walker]....the people in it did it to me
[the wheels/legs]."  It took everything I had not to bust out
laughing.  The walker stays in front of the fireplace, and I
guess he dragged his foot into it and got tangled up.

I had to throw away the 2 multi-pronged outlets the tv and
other things are plugged in to.  The prongs were bent.
His arm must have taken them down. 
Nothing else was broken and his head was ok.

The music therapist came today and we had another great
jam session.  John recognized most of the songs. 

We went to his bank and Verizon.  He rested again then went
out and sat with the neighbor's dogs. 

It's been quite the day once again. 

Sunday, January 30, 2011

45th post

I don't know how to describe today.  We filled out quarterly forms for Angel and John had to sign checks.  It's torturous to watch him sign his name.  He leaves out letters, prints instead of cursive, and when he says each letter out loud, he names them incorrectly.  By the time he finished, he went for a nap.

Teresa, Tim, and Vicki came by and brought chicken, spinach, and mac & cheese.  Nice time before Tim and Teresa go to Greece for about a month while he teaches.

After they left, for the whole afternoon, John was restless and couldn't settle down even when he laid in bed.  He kept getting up trying to tell me something.  Of course I couldn't understand, and he couldn't understand why I couldn't understand.  After a couple or three hours of this, I finally figured out what bothered him was, he thought one of the bills was made out incorrectly.  We'll probably end up going to the bank and Verizon tomorrow.
Once we got all that straight, John calmed down and seemed 'normal' again.  I told him during the middle of it that he was acting weird.  I hoped and prayed he wasn't going nuts like he did in May.  I guess the check issue was weighing on his mind too much. 

Going to the PO today was his second outing in 2 days.  It wears him out completely, but he insists. 
Haven't heard from his parents today, but talked to his mom a couple of days ago. 

Trying to go to bed earlier.  1:30 a.m. is too late.  I will have to return to work one day and don't want to be in a bad habit of staying up toooooo late.

Hospice music therapist tomorrow!

grand central station

Not much new, only busy, busy, busy.
John went with me to Publix to pick up his anti-seizure medicine.  I didn't realize he was going in or I would have parked closer.  He did great, though. Weighs 196.  We visited a couple who has been a customer of John's for years.  The man got John's leaf photo for his wife and framed it.  We wanted to see how it turned out. pretty      She fixed snacks for us but John was so exhausted from Publix we didn't stay long.  Bagged up snacks for lunch later.

John took a nap as soon as we got home.  We ate, played with the neighborhood dogs.  I did laundry while he napped again.  Bruce and Marty from church came over late in the afternoon.  Marty went with me to Harvey's to pick up bread and jelly.  [John eats 4 pieces of toast with peanut butter and jelly every morning.]  Fixed coffee and ate banana bread.  Marty noticed that John had actual conversation with Bruce while she and I sat in the kitchen.  As long as you stay on topic, you can follow the conversation with John fairly well.  

It was another good, fun, full day.