Mom is adjusting to the O2 scene very well. She instinctively knows how to adjust it on her face when she needs to blow her nose and hasn’t complained about having to wear the cannula. The new twist is her mental state. She doesn’t think she is at home, but rather has been brought someplace else. We have seen this before, but not at this level of insistence or depth. It is common with dementia and Alzheimer’s patients to experience this, and it ill only progress deeper. Last night she woke up several times and wanted to “go home”. Soon we she will want to make telephone calls to her brother who has been dead since 1984. Such is life. As she progresses in her dementia new protocols are put into place to accommodate her needs.
The power went out last week during a big storm and luckily we had backup O2 for her. This being said, it is time to have a generator installed. I have done some investigating and a local fellow is coming over this afternoon to fit us with the correct unit. The price is reasonable for us and the sense of security is priceless. It is one thing to have the power go out in July, when the nights are merely unseasonably cool. I don’t want this happening in the fall or winter and be stuck without a furnace, running water, air compressors or telephones for any period of time.
I’m handling this pretty well. It is heartbreaking-true. There is nothing I can do except make sure she is safe and cared for. The decline now will be swift, I hope, thus lessening the periods of panic and confusion running like frayed threads through her synapses.
A few months ago a good friend in the program (who took care of both his parents and his wife as they died) told me that when she finally does die I won’t know what to do with myself. He’s right. I can feel it already.
I am off to the 41st New York State Convention of Alcoholics Anonymous this weekend. I will be taking the train, thus saving me and my car a 14-hour round trip drive. I can plug in my laptop and get some work done.
Btw…”cannula” is Latin. It means “reed” or “tube”. It is also where we get the word “cannoli”.