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    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    to bhv – I wished to tell you that when I see your initials I remember my father. You see there is a department store in Paris (you may know it) which started in the 1850s. The main branch is in front of the Paris city hall which in French is called Hotel de Ville. So this department store is called Bazar de l’Hotel de Ville but no one calls it that, they just call its initials or bhv. My father loved that store because the basement was full of articles for the handy man, everything one would need. He went there at least once a week when he was retired. If you would like to read up on it go to Wikipedia and write “The Bazar de l'Hôtel de Ville or BHV.” Nice memories. It is still there.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    I am back. You told me I could write and you may regret it. I have not had the luxury to talk to anyone much since DH’s illness. First, excuse any grammatical error because English is my third language. My native language is French and in high school I took Italian before English. I just went to see DH. I took him in the garden again as it was not too warm (but I got many mosquito bites, he never gets any.) That must have tired him because he wanted to get back to his bed for a nap. So I left him after 1 ½ hour. It is so nice that he does not talk much anymore. I went through the repetitive phase. DH has an older sister and a younger brother. In the mornings he would say at the breakfast table “is my brother coming to eat breakfast?” both his siblings live in the Midwest. I’d say no, that his br was at home. So, he would say OK, then 2 minutes later “is my brother in the back yard, is he coming?” and on like that all day, sometimes 30, 40 times until I thought I was becoming nuts myself. That lasted several months. Then DH started with his sister – Is my sister coming for dinner? No, she is at home, etc etc again dozens of times a day until I just could not stand it. I invited both of his siblings to come and visit DH and in the 12 years of his illness they never did. I told my daughter in TN once that I could not stand it anymore, so she told me if I would drive him to TN she would drive him to the Midwest for several days to visit his siblings, and she did that twice. Now I have forgotten all those repetitive times but then it was so difficult to stay sane. I also wanted to ask y’all, should I go to the June thread and write there instead of here?
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Either one is fine. I look for threads with new post, so I see this one too.

    We all know that frustration and exhaustion from the repetition. My husband is done with it being constant but he will have times he starts usually when he ask about his parents. The other is when he is trying to find the cat and dog even though the dog is in his arms. He call them both by the same name - the dogs name. When he yells at the cat it much confuse the dog. At times he thinks we have two dogs and a cat like in the 70s. Other times two dogs or two cats. Otherwise he has times when he either can't tell the difference between a cat and dog or, maybe he can't think of the name and dog is easiest. Doesn't help they are both black and white.

    Don't worry about your English. If we can't figure it out, we will ask. We have ones that don't type well too. I am glad they are here with us and communicating - will figure it out or ask them more questions.
    • CommentAuthorbqd*
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Mitsubishi,
    Don't worry about your English. As Charlotte says, we will figure it out.
    I suffer the opposite problem. I am an English speaker living in Quebec, where the official language is French. He parle Francais un peu, but most of the health care workers speak predominately
    French, so sometimes getting my message across concerning my husbands care is difficult.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Hi bqd. I never thought about Mitsubishi, that is funny. Actually my grey Korat cat’s name is Mitsouko. That is the name of a classic perfume from the French house of Guerlain. My childhood best friend’s mother wore this perfume all the time, this is what Guerlain says “In 1919, Europe was fascinated by Japan and the culture of the Far East. This was the moment when Jacques Guerlain named his new fragrance Mitsouko. Mitsouko means "mystery" in Japanese and symbolises passionate and mysterious femininity.” But I abbreviated it to Mitsou.
    I went to Quebec a couple of times, to Quebec City and Trois Rivieres – such beautiful country. My above Paris childhood friend used to teach French at a university in Montreal. I think her daughter now is a radio announcer or TV or something in Montreal. I’d love to go back some day. The Canadian accent is so cute.
    • CommentAuthorbhv*
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Hi mitsou. Glad to hear where the name comes from. And like others said, don't worry about your english. We will figure it out. You can even use french words if needed. I bet if we tap and hold the word on a tablet it will translate it. I studied French in high school and Spanish in college. Can still read some. Was never good at conversing.
    That is interesting about the store in Paris known as bhv. These are my initials. I took my maiden name as middle name when I got married.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    I look at the old photos and I become teary eye, but I need to remember all the hard times that I went through (and they are not over…) I am pretty good about forgetting things that are not fun. My DH was not mean but he almost killed me (twice.) The first time was in the middle of the night. I had to go to the bathroom and he woke up and I could tell he was not himself. He forbade me to get up but I had to go. He said if I went I would be sorry (he spoke then) so I went ahead to the bathroom when I came back to the bed he lounged at me like I was an intruder and he also had his gun – I ran so fast, even on my sore knees! that is the day I started to sleep in my daughter’s bedroom (she has a lock on her door.) But he never did it again.

    The second time was 2 Christmas ago. Two days before Christmas I could not find the kitty litter. He said he had not touched it. So I looked everywhere. It was in the garden shed. I told him (and that was stupid.) He got mad and went to the shed ahead of me then turned around and pushed me very hard and said some other man must have put it there. Then I had my cane (before my knees operation) and I fell backward on the rocky ground. He left taking my cane with him and I could not get up. I stayed on the ground about 3 or 4 hours. The next day I started to cough and it got so bad I could not breathe or move. I could not drive to the doctor (it was Christmas by then anyway) and was sick for 3 weeks – I mean really sick like a dog, could not breathe, high temp, had to call Chinese delivery as could not cook – he ate Chinese for 3 weeks and I just had noodle soup. Daughters out of country for Christmas holidays, so had no one to turn to (never had any support.) I thought it was bronchitis but found out later when I finally could drive to the doctor that it had been a bad case of pneumonia and the doc said I could have died. I wonder what DH would have done as he did not know how to use the phone anymore… but I survived! That is when my daughter insisted that we needed to move closer to her.
    • CommentAuthorbhv*
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Holy mackerel what a.story. You must have been so frightened. Boy am I glad you survived that!
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    You know what I did – I threw books, boxes and bunch of stuff in the hall on the floor so that if he came to my daughter’s door I would hear him. I was really scared.
    • CommentAuthorbqd*
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Sorry about the autocorrect Mitsou!

    A scary story and glad you survived.
    • CommentAuthoroakridge
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Hi Mitsou, it looks like you're off to a good start with information from some of the other members, they can really be a support. I've not been here long and don't post a lot but when I feel lonely - or more often when I can't stand another day, it's a safe place for me to talk/gripe/moan etc :)) although my husband isn't as bad as yours I do understand some of the feelings of isolation, frustration and often helplessness.

    We had a number of things occur which didn't help either of us and it's taken a few years to get through them. I wanted to share with you some of my solutions for my own sanity. Art has always been a big part of my life and while I can't do much anymore I find pleasure in just sitting with a pencil and sketching doodles or a flower or anything to keep my mind focused. I've brought out a few of my favorite things and display them for me, because I enjoy them. Some evoke memories,some a piece I'm especially proud of - no special time or place, just as I come across something that stirs a feeling in me. We still have most of our "life" packed in boxes. Photos are wonderful, and if you have the ability to still use your camera maybe just trivial things can become a project. Today I photographed some lilies that are blooming, from all angles, maybe someday I'll paint them but today I just enjoyed looking and doing something. Also took apart some flowers and photographed them, botanical style. None of this had a reason other than to keep me moving and my mind off our situation. Our friends have drifted away, we moved too far for many of them to drive so we are mainly on our own, all day - every day, our children live across country, and oddly enough all three are or have, caring for their elderly in-laws, each with AD. I don't do needle work anymore but enjoy going through my supplies and thinking what I might do, not that I ever will but I get pleasure from looking, touching and dreaming. None of these things are important to anyone else and they usually suggest I get rid of all that "stuff" . But these things are what make me, me. In my mind I can go to another place where I don't have to deal with the situation, where I'm not a caregiver and/or mother instead of a wife. I miss it so much, a normal married relationship.

    I have a lot of beautiful glassware, some valuable, some from family long gone and some from flea markets but they each hold beauty for me. I never use them, no occasions anymore. I have a neighbor not far away who is constantly telling me I need to get rid of all this stuff, but she is a very different person with no feeling for things just because they are beautiful, so I try to ignore her without offending her. These things are the part of me that can't be taken away, and when I am depressed, or lonely, I get something out, maybe wash my lavender glass, just holding them has the ability to soothing me and for awhile, take me to a different place.

    I tried local support groups, the AD website but most everything was geared to caring for parents. It wasn't till I found this place that I felt like I had found friends who knew what I'm going through, don't chastise me for being upset, griping or even crying. I've read through years of posts and find information or just compassion in all of them. Sometimes I'll follow a persons posts, then one day I read their loved one has died, and they have to start a new life. I've never talked to anyone, have no idea of where they live, only a few discuss their age - but these are my friends. Friends who have given me information, pointed me in the right direction, talked to me like a Dutch uncle sometimes - all this through the miracle of a computer. We live in the county so have very limited internet service - but I always take some time to read through new posts. I'm not as knowledgeable as most here, nor been through trials they have but still find my fit. No idea if any of this is any help or even interesting to you, but wanted to share how I've been able to get through the days.
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Mitsou - for future use, find the transit number for their dial a ride bus. If you get sick and can't drive, you can call them to pick you up and take you to the doctor.
    • CommentAuthoroakridge
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    I meant to add something about pictures. When my mother entered a nursing home they asked us to bring photos to put on the wall. Not for my mother as she no longer recognized them, but that the staff can see them as a "real person"' instead if just another senile patient.
    • CommentAuthorbhv*
    • CommentTimeJun 25th 2018
     
    Oakridge, your post is fascinating and helpful. Thanks. I do a lot of that too. I like the visual of you washing the lavender glass. I have a lavender glass hurricane lamp. It makes me feel peaceful just looking at it.

    When my hb started day services they didn't want me to let him have his wallet since if he dropped it someone else might pick it up. But he is obssessive about it. Constantly searching for it if not in his pocket. Now he even sleeps with it. I had already taken most things out of it. So I made color photos of his IDs and blacked out his numbers. My hospice nurse friend suggested I put some pictures in his wallet. I put one of him in his flight suit at pilot training. One of me in my Air Force uniform in front of our KC-10. And one of me now - because I have long hair now. He used to cut it. The pictures were a big hit at day services. Everyone likes that we are both Air Force - he flew them I fixed them. And he kept taking them out to look at throughout the day.

    Today when I was helping him change clothes he took out the pictures and pointed at my AF picture but said his name. But he had big smiles showing me all three of them. Maybe I will put in a couple more.

    The Memory Care unit I toured last month has a.shadow box at everyone's.door with pictures, documents and knicknacks that tell a.story about the person. I don't know who puts them together, but they are seriously creative.and quickly tell a.lot about a person.
    • CommentAuthorlindyloo*
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    Mitsou, Thank you for sharing your stories. Life is sure not easy. It sounds like it is definately a good thing that your husband is now in a care facility. But that may even make you feel lonelier now, I don't know. I am glad you survived those horrible incidents and "lived to tell the story". We have had several members on this site who have had to deal with their spouse owning guns. One member, Dorothy Steele even wrote a book about it called "He Can't Help It. It's Alzheimer's".

    Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.
    • CommentAuthorlindyloo*
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    Bhv, what a wonderful "moment of joy", for your husband, filling his wallet with pictures he can relate to and share with others. Glad too that you are finding moments of joy for yourself as well, like golfing. Wish there could be more of them for you. But when you especially need one stop by the virtual "Cottage on the Lake". You'll probably see me there, I stop by frequently although I don't always post it.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    Mitsou, I don't know what the big deal is about your English. As far as I can tell, it's perfect. If you had not told us, I would not have known that English was not your first language.

    I hate to hear these horror stories about getting hurt by the person you are caring for. Caregiving is both physically and mentally demanding and it's a wonder more people don't get hurt. I'm glad your husband is in LTC now. It sounds like you have enough to do, given the house situation.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    oakridge I really enjoyed reading your post. I understand very well the pleasure you take in your favorite things and pictures. As I said in a previous post I started taking pictures as a teenager and have kept up. DH was in the environment field and we went in the outdoors quite a lot; I kept taking pictures, mostly of landscapes, trees, flowers, animals without people in them and am going through them now to have some printed. It is the same reason as you mention that I want to do a collage of pictures to place on my dh wall at the mc, mostly for others to see him as he used to be, not as an helpless old soul.

    When my mother, who had Parkinson’s disease, decided to move into an assisted living in the country, about one hour from Paris (at 90 years old) I visited her and noticed that her walls were bare. She was born and raised in Paris and loved her hometown. So I went on a photo visit, just like a tourist, and took pictures of all her favorite places in Paris, then I had them enlarged and I placed them all around her room. Some I took from the top of department stores so there would be a panoramic view. She had all her mind to the end, at 92 years old, and I think it was because of Alzheimer’s that she decided to move on. She was in an AL which was very nice, with a beautiful garden, a lovely dining area (they even served wine with meals…) but they left all the patients free to roam around. I mean patients who were just old and retired, or with Parkinson’s disease like my mom or other diseases and also the Alzheimer’s patients. Only the main door to go in and out was locked. My mother complained to me that some Alzheimer’s patients kept coming constantly to her room and repeating the same things. The AL attendants said they could not stop them and my mother just could not take it because she was paralyzed and could not stop them either. I had no idea that she had developed cancer. After she passed away the doctor told me she had forbidden him to tell me and refused any remedy to her cancer because she wanted to get away from the Alzheimer’s patients. I was shattered. That was my first meeting with this dreaded disease, and my mother did not even have it. So when I found out my dh had this disease I was beyond traumatized.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    bhv – at my husband’s AL they place the patients’ picture on the wall and tell just a bit about them, like the day they were born, where they lived and what type of profession they had and the things they enjoyed.
    That made me think about what they did at my mother’s AL in France. The patients who did not have Alzheimer’s, like my mother, and who still had their memories were asked to tell their life to the social nurse. She would print the story, usually several pages long, and pass it along to the other patients (with a brain) and the nursing staff, so they would not just be a name after a room number. Not living in France but just visiting twice a year I had not seen my mother’s until she passed away. They gave me her memory pages (about 12 pages) at that time. I was fascinated because so many things she said I had never heard about: Her memories as a little child during WW1 (she was born in 1910), about meeting my father as a young woman, and so on. One memory I really wished I had known about. During the war (WW2) the only job she had found was in a Jewish school for teenage girls in the south of France. My mother was a “free thinker” very open to all religions. She was allowed an apartment in that building and realized that if she was careful she could take some Jewish teenage girls to stay with her and then, with cooperation from the French Resistance, she could have them go through Spain and away from the Nazi. She did that with more than a dozen girls until she knew that they started to suspect her. Sshe could have been killed, she was so brave. I wish I had known to find out at least a couple of the girls names. The only memory of the Nazi I have was when we had returned to our apartment in Paris and one of my mother’s best friends, who was Jewish also, was hiding in my father’s workshop upstairs for several weeks, waiting to get away. The Gestapo came to the apartment and I was trying to tell them I knew something, trying to be smart. Luckily I was 4 years old and did not speak well and they did not listen to me. Fortunately or we would have all ended up in the camps!
    • CommentAuthorbqd*
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    The LTC facility that my hubby is in let us hang as many pictures as we liked. DH's walls are full ith photos and pictures he had here at home.
    Also he was allowed books and other mementos.
    One thing the staff found useful was a scrapbook I created when hubby turned 75. Full of pictures of his life, in chronological order,, friends, places we had been. He used to love looking through it and the staff would ask questions about various pictures. It was similar to the story book you describe, Mitsou, but with pictures.
    Sadly, hubby is too far gone to enjoy it, so we have brought it home to choose pictures for his funeral service.
    And soon we will start removing other items from his room, because once he passes we only have 24hrs to clear his room.
    • CommentAuthoroakridge
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    Mitsou, I'm reading a book now that is similar to your mothers experience. It's called Irena's Children, about a young woman caught in that time and her work in smuggling Jewish children out, much like our own Underground Railroad during slavery times.

    I just read about several new apps to help AD caregivers. I'm not familiar with them and haven't checked them out but may be of interest to some of you. Alzheimer's caregiver Buddy, CareZone, The Dementia Friendly Home, and Memory Box, which features old songs etc by year. The idea is to offer stimulation with things that may have been relevant to someone at a specific time in their lives. I'm sure you could find them with a google search.
    • CommentAuthorbhv*
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    Mitsou, I keep forgetting to tell you I got a.chuckle from one of your posts. You were talking about Paris.and your first language being french and how Mitsou is short for a famous french perfume. Then you said you wanted to ask y'all.... Had to chuckle trying to mash up all thse accents ;)

    This is fun getting to know new people.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2018
     
    – Thanks oakridge I’ll check those apps that you mentioned. Bhv even though I am French I have lived in Georgia since 1973 and now am in another southern state, so I guess I have absorbed the culture somewhat and its dialect. I just wish I could get rid of my French accent sometimes, although most people who don’t know me don’t realize it is French as it is not too strong. Also because my hair is reddish they usually, about 95% think I am German, and the rest think I could be Russian. Plus you know I am not 100% French, I am half French and half Armenian (like the Kardashians – lol!!) My mother was a red head with turquoise eyes.

    I really wish I had known about your group years ago as I was struggling to take care of dh alone. From the time he started showing his AD signs, in 2006 until about just lately, I never had any support or help with his care. When we went to the doctor and he gave the diagnostic back in 2009 (saying he had had the disease for several years then) he only said to come back in a year. We just went on yearly visits and it was about 2 years ago that a nurse there told me I could take dh to a daycare. I did not even know they existed. But after checking there was not one close by. Also a couple of years ago as I was talking to a neighbor she said “I did not know you were a caregiver.” I replied “a what?” as I had never heard the term. Consequently I did not know there could be caregiver respite and all the rest. At first I thought she meant I was giving care to my husband, well, duh! I cared for him, but I did not understand or know that special meaning of the term - language again…
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJun 29th 2018
     
    It is not easy to live alone now. I did not mention that a couple of days ago when I was washing the cats’ dish the water was cold. I went into the basement to look and it sounded like a waterfall – bunch of water was coming out of the water heater. Somehow I found a lever on top of it and it stopped the water. While having breakfast afterwards it just hit me that the gas was still on in the heater and without water it could explode – what to do? I had no idea how to turn the gas off and could imagine my 1930 house exploding like one see those on TV. So I went on the front porch to think and finally decided to call my son-in-law. Luckily he was off and drove to my house to turn the gas off. Now I have to buy a new water heater. DH used to do all this.

    DH has a roommate, about his age, who is totally non-verbal and walks a lot, slowly with his head completely on his chest – one cannot see his face. DH was seating at the large table in the main area with all his cats pictures in front of him. His roommate came by and, with his head bent, looked at some of the pictures, then he walked off. Usually DH does not stop playing with his pictures, but this time he looked at me, bent his head like his roommate, then looked back up gave me a wink and rolled his eyes. I was stunned. He had not done anything like that for a long time. He looked almost like he used to, making fun. Have y’all experienced flashes of lucidity in your AD patients like this? Did it happen often?
    • CommentAuthorbqd*
    • CommentTimeJun 29th 2018
     
    Yes Mitsou, I did experience flashes of lucidity ln my DH. Sometimes they were only a flash, and sometimes they lasted longer. He had a a wonderfully bizarre sense of humour and it would come to life in his times of lucidity. He always got a smile from me and from the staff.
    Sadly he is too far gone for any of that anymore
    Now I am just happy for a flash of recognition.
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeJun 29th 2018
     
    That was as good memory to hold on to.

    Sorry about the water heater. I had to replace mine in the motorhome that we live in about 2 years ago. RV water heaters cost about twice what a big home one does. Then a few months ago I opened one of the storage compartments when I saw water dripping out of it and it was full of water. A plastic valve was cracked and had to be replaced. When we owned a home with a gas water heater that needed replaced, we rented one from the gas company. When we sold the house we had to pay it off but it was cheaper than buying one from a store.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJul 5th 2018
     
    Today I decided to go through the bag of clothes I brought back last month from GA for my DH. I did place his underwear in his drawer here, even though at the AL he wears adult diapers now. I guess I should give all of these away, some are brand new. There is still so much of his clothes left in our old house in GA. His AD went so slowly that I just did not think that he would finally have to go to an AL.

    That house in GA is just a couple of miles from a Civil War battlefield park, near a small mountain. When the weather warms up many charitable marches are organized (and I am asked to financially participate.) Our road is blocked for 3 hours or more on Saturdays and we can’t drive out. There’s the March of Dimes, the HIV/AIDS Walk, the American Heart Association Heart Walk, the march for the American Diabetes Alert Day , the March against Hunger, the Light the Night Walk against Leukemia, and more. But, strangely in the 41 years that we lived there I never heard of a march against Alzheimer’s. I wonder why?

    When I became a US citizen I was told that I was lucky to now be part of the best country in the world, with the highest standard of living, best education and best healthcare. But did that include Alzheimer’s? My DH’s father had AD in the 1970s and frankly I do not see much difference in his treatment of AD then and my DH’s AD treatment now. Why? My father-in-law’s AD was in 1970 and DH’s AD is in another century, in 2018, why? No research?

    DR. Alois Alzheimer discovered this disease in 1906. The AIDS virus, HIV, was discovered in 1984 and I read that by 2015 this virus is no longer a terminal illness. 1.1 million people in the US live with this virus, but 5.7 million Americans in 2018 live with Alzheimer, and it is a terminal illness for sure. I read that the National Institute of Health (NIH) investment in Alzheimer’s research in 2011 was $450 million while investment in HIV/AIDS was 6 to 12 times more, ranging in the billion and the same for cancer and heart disease research. By contrast many cancers can be cured, there is a 21% decrease in death by stroke and between 2000 and 2010 death by HIV went down 42%; however, death by Alzheimer has increased by 89% (and if not more is done by mid century 16 million people in the US will have it) - so, I repeat, why such little funding for AD? Why? I hear that funding for AD will increase by maybe 500 million but it is still 5% of the funding of HIV which gets 27 billion. So why? I thought they had told me healthcare in the US was the best, and for everyone? (that was in 1985 by the way when I became a US citizen) do you think they, as they now say “mis-spoke” or told some “un-truth”? Why the discrepancy? I am confused. I frankly don’t understand why AD research is not at least the same as the other serious diseases – why? Maybe if something had been found since 1970, maybe I could have kept my DH at home longer? I miss him.
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeJul 5th 2018
     
    I believe so little is spent towards Alzheimer's research compared to cancer, HIV/AIDS, heart disease, Ebola - because it is considered a natural part of aging by too many even though it is being diagnosed earlier all the time. I believe in early years many were hidden away or sent to psych wards thinking it was mental illness. Look at Ebola - they found a vaccine within a year I think at a cost of millions?

    I like Australia and I think Denmark - they are leading the way in Alzheimer's research and how they care for them.

    We still have the best medical facilities in the world but it is not available to all - depends on your insurance and finances. Thousands come to this country every year for medical care from countries that have socialized medicine because they can't get the care they need or want. After my hysterectomy for cancer 4 years ago I belonged to a online group for those who had them. There was one woman in Canada who had been diagnosed with uterine cancer but she didn't live near any big cities. Her surgery date was 6 months away. She found the money and came to the US to get it which they said was wise because it was spreading. She managed to get an appointment with an oncologist to do her radiation and chemo in Canada. During our RV traveling days we met Canadians who came here for medical care they could not get in Canada. Ironic that Americans go to Mexico for medical procedure their insurance won't cover in the US but they can afford it in Mexico cause it is so cheap.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJul 6th 2018
     
    Charlotte – I think you are right about people thinking AD is an old age disease. I was at the grocery store a while back in GA and the cashier asked me if I wanted to add $1 for the fight against muscular dystrophy. I said yes but that I would also like to add $1 against Alzheimer’s disease. She said ”What? Alzheimer’s? no, we don’t ask contributions for that disease.” I asked her why and she answered “well, you know, Alzheimer’s is about old people, and we tend to want to help younger folks.”

    It has been about a month since DH was admitted in the AL. The first ten days I was in GA taking care of the tree that had fallen on our roof so I was busy. But now here in this new house I have time to think. I start opening a box, and then I sit down and get inertia. I read that placing your partner in an AL or NH is very hard for the remaining person. Grief can be strong. It is said that one needs to stay close to friends and family. Fine, but what to do when one has moved long distances to a new home and knows no one? Making friends when senior is very difficult. I was reading that as we age people get to be less tolerant and more judgmental. So, if they hear or read a word you say they don’t like they don’t give you the benefit of the doubt as when they were young, and they don’t want to know you. My house is super quiet. My last visitor was the handyman installing my water heater about 10 days ago. Ah well, that’s the way it will be… I guess I’ll go and have another cup of coffee and listen to the thunderstorm.
    • CommentAuthorlindyloo*
    • CommentTimeJul 6th 2018
     
    Mitsou, come visit at the Cottage on the Lake. You can have a virtual visit with your friends here and leave lonesomeness behind for a while. Which we all need to do every once in a while. We also escape to the Christmas Lodge in winter which Wolf opened to us a number of years ago.
    • CommentAuthorbhv*
    • CommentTimeJul 6th 2018
     
    Mitsou, you might try senior centers. There are several around me and one of them has lots of activities day and night, for singles and couples. I know I would have fun there but I couldn't see what my hb would do.

    I have a friend in Centerville - just south of Nashville. I could ask her for recommendations if that's anywhere near you.

    Sometimes it is difficult to think of myself as a senior though. Was going through some old pictures of when we first were.married back in 1982. I was just a kid! I don't even recognize us. Found one when we were camping in our jeans and western shirts and cowboy boots. Really adorable. We were smiling and holding hands. Compared to that I am definitely a senior.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJul 6th 2018
     
    Lindyloo and Charlotte – thank you for the suggestions. Centerville is about 61 miles from me, about 1 and ¼ hour drive, so it’s a bit far. I did look at senior centers in town. The closest is called Fiftyforward and they show activities, their dues are $120. The problem with that is I do go and visit dh about 3 times a week in his AL. He does not speak but at least I see him. Then also I have to keep driving back to GA until everything is done in that house – first is to replace the roof. So I don’t feel I should undertake anything that I cannot go to regularly. But, I shall in the future. The cottage on the lake sounds fun. We lived in GA close to a huge lake and would drive there often, but we did not have a cottage! I grew up without brothers or sisters and without cousins too, so I can be alone without being lonely. I think I’ll take a Gray Line sightseeing tour of Nashville, so I’ll have an idea of where things are, because I was looking at senior centers and had no idea where they were located around here.
    • CommentAuthorNicky
    • CommentTimeJul 7th 2018
     
    Mitsou - Sorry to hear about your problems in GA. You mention you grew up without brothers, sisters & cousins, so you can be alone without being lonely. That's actually a good thing for you - it makes being alone much easier to handle. My husband has been out of the house for a year now & I'm so lonely. I grew up with a sister who is 13 years older & she got married when I was 7 - also had no cousins. I always felt like an only child, was lonely & wished I'd had a sibling closer to my age to spend time with. I still feel the same - wishing I had my husband to share my life & spend time with. We were always together - I didn't feel the need for a lot of friends - I had my friend & he's all I needed. My mother was a widow for 16 years, although she missed my dad, she did not feel the loneliness like I do - she was a loner, so being alone was not so bad for her. I visit my husband daily & enjoy those visits, but it just doesn't seem to be enough. People often tell me that women do better alone than men. So, I've been thinking about how my husband would react if the roles were reversed - if I had AD & was in long term care. I know he'd miss me, but he's quiet & a loner so being alone would be easier for him. He's good in the kitchen & knows how to clean the house, so no problem there - I should say he use to be good at those things. I know a lot of us here are finding being alone difficult, so I'm not the only one.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJul 15th 2018
     
    I did say above that I can be alone without being lonely. But not today! I wish I had family or friends around to celebrate, but my DH is in AL, and my children are away (visiting a family member in the mid-west who is having a difficult surgery.) The French team Les Bleus won the soccer World Cup this morning. I watched but it is not the same when you can’t celebrate with others. I did place my French flag on the porch yesterday for Bastille Day and hung it again today hoping the French team would win. I’ll take it down tonight as I know they don’t like this here. I was in Atlanta in 1998 when the French les Bleus team won their last World Cup. The Consulate General of France for the Southeast is in Atlanta and the French community had been invited there to celebrate, and I went.

    With my husband, every 14th of July we would place my French flag outside, watched the Tour de France on TV. I would get up extra early to look at the Bastille Day parade down the Champs Elysees in Paris then later the fireworks on my computer. We would have some French food and wine, or Champagne. We did this every 14th July for about 50 years! Now this year he is in AL and it’s not the same, I can’t celebrate alone. People might say that I am in the US now, and a citizen, and I should not care, but I am a French citizen as well, and I like to celebrate both the 4th and the 14th July. (I would have driven to Atlanta but since my daughter and family left for the Midwest I need to stay here for my dh just in case and will drive there when they return.)

    As I explained to a friend once, just imagine that you traveled to Europe when you were in your twenties, and married a German or Greek or Portuguese and stayed in that country, had children and all you family in the US had passed away. Your husband or wife would celebrate the 4th of July with you because no one around you was from the US or even spoke English (including your partner,) you spoke his/her language only, and you did celebrate your 4th of July that way for 50 years. Wouldn’t you miss it if suddenly you did not any longer? On top of having your partner away from you, and also having moved a distance from your home and being in a new city? So, I am happy that Les Bleus won, but I am sad that no one is here to cheer with me, that’s all.
    • CommentAuthorbqd*
    • CommentTimeJul 15th 2018
     
    I am sorry you are lonely today, Mitsou. Yes it's always nice to celebrate holidays and significant sporting events with friends. I watched both the Tour de France and the World Cup today, so I was at least with you in spirit.
    I was in Paris several years ago on July 14 and what a celebration!
    I have been to Canada Day celebrations, even braving the masses to take in the entertainment on Parliament Hill in Ottawa. But I'm not up to that anymore. We used to go watch the local fireworks, but that had to stop when DH entered a nh. Last year I took in the local festivities by myself. Ran into lots of people I knew, but it wasn't the same. It's just as easy to be lonely in a crowd as it is sitting by yourself at home.
    • CommentAuthorbhv*
    • CommentTimeJul 15th 2018
     
    Hooray for Les Bleus and happy Bastille day Mitsou. Cheers!
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeJul 15th 2018
     
    To celebrate your French roots even though you are not an American citizen is not wrong. The Irish in this country, even ones that have been here for generations, still love to celebrate their Irish heritage as does the Scots, Germans, Asians, etc. It is only wrong in my opinion when they try to make America like their homeland (like the Mexicans do around here). So go ahead and celebrate and be proud. It is part of who you are.

    Since Georgia is more you home than where you are, next time look at facilities around there. The phase you husband is currently in hopefully will pass then to move him would be easier. In the meantime, if you bought your house, have you considered selling it and moving into an apartment so it would be easier if you decide to move, not to mention someone else doing the maintenance work?
    • CommentAuthorNicky
    • CommentTimeJul 15th 2018
     
    Mitsou - sorry you're lonely today. You're right - celebrating alone is no fun. Last weekend was our 45th wedding anniversary & I didn't feel much like celebrating.

    I'm sure it must be very difficult coming & adjusting to a new country. I can't remember if you mentioned how long you've been living in the U.S.? I don't think I'd adjust very well living in another country - all I did was change province & I'm having trouble with that adjustment.

    Happy Bastille day!!
  1.  
    Mitsou, I am a member here but do not post very often at all anymore. My hubs passed away 3 1/2 yrs ago. But guess what? I am practically your neighbor. I live just north of Nashville. I can be in the middle of the city within 20 min. I would love to meet you somewhere for lunch. Or I could pick you up. Whatever works for you. There are loads of folks here that can vouch for me as I used to be very active while I was in the trenches. I have been successful in moving on and it really brings me down to drop in here very often. I think it just brings too much back to me. We each have to deal with things in whatever way works best for us. But I just have to check in from time to time to check on friends here. It sounds like you could use a friend. I put my email address on my profile if you want to contact me. I will leave it there for a few days. I moved here about 7 years ago to be near my daughter. And in my case, it was the best move ever. I am originally from northeastern Kentucky. A born and bred Kentucky Wildcat. I still travel back to Lexington for all the home basketball games (3 1/2 hrs each way). So, if you think my obsession with "Big Blue" won't clash with your Georgia Bulldogs red, contact me. On a serious note, NOBODY should ever feel alone while going through the toughest time of their life! Sometimes it just helps to be around someone else that just "gets it". To get to my profile, just click on my username.
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeJul 21st 2018
     
    Aunt B I hope she contacts you. That would be good for both of you.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeJul 22nd 2018
     
    Aunt B - I am in Georgia right now and my internet is not working - I have no WiFi and writing this on my small cell phone. It’s difficult. Comcast repair is supposed to come on Tuesday afternoon to fix it . I hope they do and I’ll write more then. Thanks for the note.
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeJul 31st 2018
     
    Mitsou how is it going? Is the house in Georgia getting put back in shape?
  2.  
    Mitsou, if you are interested in meeting up some time just post on this thread. I don't feel comfortable leaving my email address public any longer. Hope you are doing well.
    • CommentAuthorMitsou
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2018
     
    Aunt B – I just came back to Nashville. Comcast had to come several times because they had to rewire outside. The first two guys could not figure out what was wrong, the third one said the outside wiring had worn out (but every time it tooks several days to get them to come.) I did copy your email, but as you would know it – I forgot it by the computer desk in GA! But I’ll be returning at the end of the month as the roof will be replaced then. I have gone to see DH and will return again tomorrow. Been busy now that I have the computer to figure out where to buy the cheapest special diet for my old cat that was diagnosed with early kidney disease.

    Charlotte, the house is very slow going. I cleaned only under and around the computer desk in GA – there was so much stuff. But I also emptied the closet there and gave 5 large plastic bags of clothes and brought 9 bags of recycling to the bin. I now have to accept that this house won’t be done in several months, with me going at it alone, and only several days a months – I think it will take a couple of years! But, that is OK, it keeps me quite busy (and tired!)

    DH never liked to throw things away, but had become real bad these last several years. I found income tax returns, from when he still could do the taxes, from the 1980s through 1999 that he had hidden away in the computer closet. I could not get to it before because the computer desk was in front of it. In one of the files I found a note he had written to me when he was going away several days on business, saying how I should be careful with myself because he cared so much for me and that he would always be there for me. After reading that, I just could not do any more cleaning – was having a good cry.
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2018
     
    Thanks for the good and sad update.

    Tax returns - I still have all ours dating back to our first one for 1971.
    • CommentAuthorpaulc
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd 2018
     
    Sorry to hear about your cat. I've lost 2 cats to kidney disease. For one of my cats the most important thing was to find food she would eat. She wasn't eating but I decided to try the cheap Purina canned cat food, she loved it. Would eat a lot though not gain any weight (she had lost a lot by then).

    We gave both cats fluids via IV. Made a big difference, the extra fluids helps the kidneys. If the amount of fluids are low enough (65ml or less) you can draw the fluids from the IV bag into a syringe and then use that into the cat. Involves lots of needles, 18 gauge to draw the fluids into the bag and then butterfly need for going from syringe to cat. I am doing this with another cat for helping with high calcium levels and I find this easier since it is much easier to measure the amount of fluid and I can inject the fluids anywhere in the house and not where I am hanging the bag. This might sound daunting but giving the cats fluids was easier than I pictured.

    The cat food requires a prescription. See if you can buy the food from Chewy.com, I've found buying cat food over the Internet less expensive than even chain stores.