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    • CommentAuthoroakridge
    • CommentTimeFeb 19th 2019
     
    Just read through all the stages again but he has always had symptoms from mild to last stage. I don't know that it makes any difference in the long run. He can still feed himself, dress - although he won't bathe or change clothes without a major fight. I try and fix enough food so he can just put something in the microwave. I bought a smaller one last week, fairly simply, just push the button. I don't let him use the stove anymore.

    Right now he is sewing elastic on the back of a pair of slippers I bought him last week. He had asked for something he could just slip on to step outside. But he didn't like them, loses them without even knowing it. He asked for something to put on the back, didn't want my help, so last night I got some elastic, a needle and thread for him. He is working away :)

    This disease is terrible. I want my husband back!! I heard it called a "half widow", makes sense.
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 19th 2019
     
    Sorry things are like they are but you need to be working on making changes for you not him.

    I am fortunate other than horrible hot flashes I have had little problems since my hysterectomy including ovaries and tubes. May will mark my 5 year cancer free. Oakridge, if you ever want to chat my email is in my profile.

    Made it to the chiropractor today. My neck and back was so bad after all that shoveling. With my neck out making the arthritis worst it causes pain down into my shoulder and upper arms. I found aspercreme with lidocaine works real good for the pain - better than ibuprofen. Finally getting laundry done - finishing up as the snow flurries start. I sure hope we don't get the 3 inches. So tired of this February! The snow is not pretty anymore except at a distance. It actually is not snow but ice now - mounds of ice.
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 20th 2019
     
    Praise the Lord - an easy fix. Saw ice down my hose last night. The snow/ice on ground turned it just enough to loosen it. Took it off, put new plumbers tape on and tightened up. So far so good.
    • CommentAuthorpaulc
    • CommentTimeFeb 21st 2019
     
    oakridge, this sounds very serious. Can you get a PO box and have all mail go to it. Some people take this step to ensure their spouse doesn't get it first. Would there be any problems with med delivery and a PO box? You can look at the mail and then give him the mail that is safe for him to review later, hiding the existence of the mail that you don't want him to see.

    My wife once threw away a $1,000 bill from the gas company. She had no idea what it was. Fortunately I reviewed our recycling bag and saw the bill. We had a large bill because the gas meter was broken for over a year and we were charged only the minimum for that time.
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 21st 2019
     
    When I was coming back from visiting hb last week I started thinking about my affairs. I have a DPOA and POLST but I was reminded of problems others over the years had dealing with retirement accounts. I stopped by my bank which my money goes into to see if they needed a separate document for my sister to access my accounts if she has to use it. Sure enough they have their own form.. I texted her telling her the next time they go this way we need to go to the bank and have it filled out. I could put her on my account but I don't want to do that. I should probably do this for our joint account where hb's money goes but I don't plan on dying before him.
    • CommentAuthoroakridge
    • CommentTimeFeb 21st 2019
     
    Paul, a PO Box would solve the problem of him not getting the mail but yes, we do have some things that can't be sent to a PO box. Also, I'd have to go into town every day and in winter we might not get in for awhile. I have been more aware of when he prepares to go to the mailbox and stand at the door and wait for him. Couldn't find the medication box I wanted so will wait till I get to town and go by the medical supply. We had a pretty hot fight over it for a couple of days - but he's forgotten it all now. Our income checks go direct to the bank but I do get checks in the mail occasionally.

    We always itemize our taxes and I usually have everything sorted and ready for the accountant - have our personal and business taxes. Last year, I was sitting in the floor, going through the receipts a final time, setting the major ones in a pile off to the side. Was almost done when he held up a pice of blue paper and said are you sure you want this shredded?? I turned around and he had run everything through the cross shredder. I was speechless, simply could not believe he had done that. To make a long story short.....I gathered up all the shredded materials, put them in a clear plastic bag. When we met with the accountant the next day (same once since we moved back here) I just sat the bag in the middle of his desk. After I went through the story, we had to piece a few little scraps that had a major deduction on it but otherwise, he just used my figures. After we got caught up on our families he was still laughing; asked if he could take a picture to put on his Facebook page. I kept the bag in case anyone ever questions by deductions, LOL.
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 21st 2019
     
    Oakridge, get a bookkeeping program like Quickbooks or Quicken to keep your records in. Or scan your receipts and save to a file.

    I was visiting my husband today when I received a call from the Veterans Home. He is #3 on the list now (shocked me) and they could have a bed in the next couple weeks for him. So I need to decide if I want to move him - again. He would have a private room, even his own TV. A lot bigger outdoor space to walk when the weather is nice. I need to call tomorrow to see if any of the 7 in the pod/cabin are higher functioning, ones he could interact with or if they are all further along. That is the big problem where he is - there are only one guy he can interact with. The rest of the time he is hanging out with the maintenance guys or staff. Today when I got there he was trying to help the maintenance guy troubleshoot a vacuum that was really beyond help!

    Now just when I thought I could relax, now I have to decide whether to move him or not.
    • CommentAuthorbhv*
    • CommentTimeFeb 22nd 2019
     
    Charlotte, surely it will settle down soon. The Veterans home sounds better for interaction. Is that the one closer to you?
    I’m in Palm Springs visiting a friend. It’s cold here too. Lots of roads closed from flash flooding last week. Her place is fine. Snow birds won’t be lounging by the pool though. Last night it was 44 here. Apparently it was less than 32 at my house and they had hail and snow in my neighborhood. It seems to snow in So Cal once every ten years or so. And I missed it.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeFeb 22nd 2019 edited
     
    Hi Charlotte, Have you taken a tour of the Veterans' Home? If not, I'd suggest you do that before making a decision. There is nothing like actually seeing the place in operation. Would Art be in a special dementia unit there?
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 22nd 2019
     
    I actually have toured it twice - once last fall before it opened and again on Thursday. But, I did only saw the memory care home that no one had moved into yet. They have only found enough qualified NA for one to open. That one currently has 7 (10 total rooms) in it. I would have liked to see in it, what the residents were like but the receptions said HIPPA prevented her from showing us. I need to call Steve, the director of the place Monday and ask more questions. They are built in an 'H' design with the '--' being where the offices are, PT room where they also do speech and occupational therapy, and the rec and meeting rooms. There are 6 'homes' for assisted living and 2 for memory care. All rooms are private furnished with hospital bed, easy chair, desk & chair, 3 drawer dresser, flat screen TV, armoire for hanging clothes, a large bathroom with huge walkin shower and they also have the ceiling lift for patients who are bedridden that will take them to the toilet or shower. So it is set up from early to end of life care without aides needing to do all the lifting by themselves.


    Today I received a bottle of Trazodone in the mail. Not pleased about it but since the meds come from the VA the are sent to me first. This is the letter I sent to his neurologist. She is in on Monday's so hopefully she will get it then and reply back to me.

    """I placed Art in Memory Care on the 6th. He has had a few nights where he doesn't sleep through the night. I told the nurse maybe a RX for melatonin PRN might be called for. At home I would sometimes give him 6mg to get him to sleep earlier which when given around 6 had him in bed by 10.

    Evidently they sent in a request to Andrew Hansen, PA - his primary here in Richland who prescribed 50mg trazodone which arrived in the mail today. (I am familiar with it since in the 80s I was on for depression which caused a big weight gain but within 15 minutes my head was spinning so I better be in bed.) Knowing how quickly it can hit and the fact Art is not use to taking a lot of medications, I am concerned if his head starts spinning it will scare him.

    I researched to see if two antidepressants, particularly these two - sertraline and trazodone are good together. There are a lot of warnings about it. I don't want him over medicated just because they don't like him up walking around at night and sleeping during the day. I also don't want to add unnecessary prescription medications that can have bad side effects when they are not absolutely necessary.

    What is your opinion on mixing the two? I trust you more than I trust Hansen.

    I was also going to ask for Ibuprofen PRN if needed.

    Received a call Thursday he is #3 on the wait list for the Veterans Home here in Walla Walla. She said it could be within the next couple weeks. So I have to decide whether to move him again."""

    It is about a mile from where he currently is, so it would still be 65 miles. If I moved him, he would stay there until the end. I won't plan on moving him closer to me.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeFeb 23rd 2019
     
    Hi Charlotte, Nothing is easy, is it?
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 23rd 2019
     
    And since I am not one to sit back and trust them blindly I will check on each drug and challenge it if I feel it is wrong.
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 24th 2019
     
    I checked his VA records and the trazodone was ordered the 12th (it was probably ordered early but that is when it was entered into his records). When I spoke with them on the 16th and again the 21st nothing was said about it. I thought this place was different but if someone getting up to walk during the night bothers them, I guess it is not. I might be fighting the wrong battle, but if he is not violent nor causing problems being up during the night, then there is no need to medicate. After all, I placed him for social interaction and the freedom to walk/pace/wander when he wants where it is safe. I just sent an email off to the director complaining about her not telling me she had ordered it while I was talking about melatonin. Trazodone is something that needs to be given daily - not PRN. You can't just stop it either.

    I am sure they are not happy I am being picky, but one thing that will rile me up is not being honest with me. If there is a problem of him being up every night and sleeping during the day - then tell me. But, isn't that a reason to have them in a lock facility so they will be safe to wander at night if they so choose?

    I definitely will be making up a list to verify with the Vet Home on how they operate.
    • CommentAuthorpaulc
    • CommentTimeFeb 25th 2019
     
    Time switching (being awake during the night and asleep at day) isn't unusual but it is normal to try to get a dementia patient back on a normal schedule. But all new medications should go through you before being ordered.

    As to wandering, this should only be a problem if he is going into other resident's bedrooms. If he is wandering through common areas and hallways this shouldn't be an issue. For the past 20 years ALFs have been build to allow for wandering, with the main hallways usually creating a circuit so a person can walk around as much as they like.

    You have some very specific things to as the Vet Home. If they give a positive answer it sounds like a move would be good.

    I spent much of this weekend visiting a friend in the hospital. Wasn't planned but she had a bad Diverticulitis attack. The night nurse didn't give her the nighttime medicines since she was asleep and my friend was in pain this morning. Hopefully this won't mean an extra day in the hospital. But she now has to plan on an operation in a few weeks to remove the bad part of her colon, this hasn't been the first time she has been hospitalized for diverticulitis and there is a danger of a colon perforation in the future.
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 25th 2019
     
    My husband's neurologist just phoned me. She said I was right in being concerned about mixing the two antidepressants because they can have bad interactions. But since Art is on such a low dose of sertraline chances are small. She says she has done when needed but there is no indication it is. She also agreed to drug him only for their convenience is wrong since I placed him to there to have a safe place where he could wander if he wanted to, even during the night. And, since they have given me no reason to sedate him like going into other residents rooms and/or causing trouble, no need to sedate him.

    She is sending in an order for 6 mg melatonin at dinner time as needed. Once he gets back to sleeping all night and adjusted to the change, then they don't need to give it.

    My email to the director finally got a response from the nurse. According to her they have been giving him the Trazodone. Not sure where they got it from. I know they have a pharmacy they use. If that pharmacy is going to be filling the RX and the VA is something has to stop. I get charged for the VA Rx's. I see lack of communication happening. Maybe they are use to families not being involved or care.
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 26th 2019
     
    My friend Paula asked me today how I was coming on my RV projects. Told her I haven't done much since moving the furniture. she asked me why. Me 'not motivated'. Her: 'why?' Me: 'guess I need to know he is settled in permanently and not coming back home'.

    Got a call this morning from his PA's office. Wanted to know who Dr. Silbert was that wants to change from Trazadone to Melatonin. I told her check your records. She is his neurologist at the Portland VA. She said that is all she needed to know is who she was. Wonder if she is a blonde and can't check the medical records?
    • CommentAuthorJan K
    • CommentTimeFeb 27th 2019
     
    I had big plans for this week. I've been much more tired than usual, so arranged for DH to go to respite starting on Friday. Now, instead of him going to respite, we're both down with the flu and not likely to be going anywhere any time soon. I am not doing my happy dance right now.

    The miracle of this is that, since respite was coming, the house is stocked with easy-to-fix ingredients, Lean Cuisine dinners, and small treats. It's wonderful to have all that when we can't really cook.

    Still looking forward to respite....
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 27th 2019
     
    I got to thinking last night what is the difference this placement and the first one. The first one I was visiting almost every day and he still went to day care. This placement due to weather it was 10 days the first visit, then 6 days before I could make it again. It will be 7 days Thursday since I last visited - again due to weather. Not suppose to have snow for a week so hoping to make it Friday or Saturday. We broke a 1916 Feb snowfall record. Now spring can come. So tired of cold and shoveling.

    Basically he must feel like I abandoned him leaving where nothing is familiar. That could be why he wasn't sleeping. He was up looking for something familiar or maybe waiting.

    Jan, hope you are both feeling better. Curious did you get the flu shot? Hb gets them but I don't.
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      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2019
     
    It's My Party
    Lesley Gore

    It's my party, and I'll cry if I want to
    Cry if I want to, cry if I want to
    You would cry too if it happened to you

    Nobody knows where my Art has gone
    But Alz left the same time
    Why was he holding his hand
    When he's supposed to be mine

    It's my party, and I'll cry if I want to
    Cry if I want to, cry if I want to
    You would cry too if it happened to you

    Playin' my records, keep dancin' all night
    But leave me alone for a while
    Till Art's dancin' with me
    I've got no reason to smile

    It's my party, and I'll cry if I want to
    Cry if I want to, cry if I want to
    You would cry too if it happened to you

    Alz and Art just walked through the door
    Like a vulture with her prey
    Oh what…
  1.  
    Well, that pretty much sums it up and says it all, Charlotte. Hang in there, babe, we've got your back.