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Mom

MaggieD

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I brought mom back to my house the other day. I think she'll just stay here with me, though I'm not positive. I'm no doctor, no medical training, but I think mom has what's called Failure to Thrive. She's 86...can barely move one foot in front of the other with a walker...knows it!...her short-term memory is gone...she's incontinent and doesn't care. Hahaha!

Whether it's her medication (which she needs to stay alive) or a general decline makes no difference. It is what it is.

She's eating like a bird. Yesterday she had an Ensure with a banana blended in for breakfast. For lunch a scrambled egg, slice of onion, two strips of bacon and applesauce. For dinner, she had a few bites of bbq'd chicken, a bite or two of pickled beets, and a quarter of a banana late ion the evening. She also had some apple juice thruout the day.

Now that I know her bigger meal seems to be lunch (2 days in a row), I'll make sure she gets protein...but I'm not going to encourage her to eat anymore other than just ask her, "How's the chicken, mom?" Sometimes that prompts her to take a bite. Or, "How's the apple juice?" which might remind her to take a drink.

I took her for a short walk down the block, probably 100 yards there and back. It took a half hour. I have to tell her "Long steps, mom," or she tiny-marches in place. Her mind, other than her short-term memory, is pretty good -- but all worldly interests are gone.

I cancelled her physical therapy, occupational therapy (ha!) and visiting nurse. I know what has to be done and will do it as mom tolerates. Like yesterday's walk. I'll try to do that every day.

She's oh-so-tired...it's just about 9 a.m. here in Chicago, and she's still asleep. I'm just going to let her sleep as long as she'd like. I'll check on her in an hour or so . . .

Through it all, she's happy and content. We laugh at her foibles and frailty and I keep telling her it'll get better as we work on it.

And every night, when I tuck her in bed, I tell her, "I love you very much, Mom," and she says, "I love you, too," right back. ;)

Thanks for listening.
 

Fisher

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Parenting a parent is bound to be tough, but as long as you are working with what you have, you'll be doing great. The only real big issue I see is with her incontinence. Keep an good check on sores as those can be hard to stop once they get going. Otherwise, just enjoy the blessing that you still have her with you at that age.
 

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I brought mom back to my house the other day. I think she'll just stay here with me, though I'm not positive. I'm no doctor, no medical training, but I think mom has what's called Failure to Thrive. She's 86...can barely move one foot in front of the other with a walker...knows it!...her short-term memory is gone...she's incontinent and doesn't care. Hahaha!

Whether it's her medication (which she needs to stay alive) or a general decline makes no difference. It is what it is.

She's eating like a bird. Yesterday she had an Ensure with a banana blended in for breakfast. For lunch a scrambled egg, slice of onion, two strips of bacon and applesauce. For dinner, she had a few bites of bbq'd chicken, a bite or two of pickled beets, and a quarter of a banana late ion the evening. She also had some apple juice thruout the day.

Now that I know her bigger meal seems to be lunch (2 days in a row), I'll make sure she gets protein...but I'm not going to encourage her to eat anymore other than just ask her, "How's the chicken, mom?" Sometimes that prompts her to take a bite. Or, "How's the apple juice?" which might remind her to take a drink.

I took her for a short walk down the block, probably 100 yards there and back. It took a half hour. I have to tell her "Long steps, mom," or she tiny-marches in place. Her mind, other than her short-term memory, is pretty good -- but all worldly interests are gone.

I cancelled her physical therapy, occupational therapy (ha!) and visiting nurse. I know what has to be done and will do it as mom tolerates. Like yesterday's walk. I'll try to do that every day.

She's oh-so-tired...it's just about 9 a.m. here in Chicago, and she's still asleep. I'm just going to let her sleep as long as she'd like. I'll check on her in an hour or so . . .

Through it all, she's happy and content. We laugh at her foibles and frailty and I keep telling her it'll get better as we work on it.

And every night, when I tuck her in bed, I tell her, "I love you very much, Mom," and she says, "I love you, too," right back. ;)

Thanks for listening.
my grandmom and grandpa always prayed for her children and grandchildren who never left them alone when they needed their help

angels never ignore such children too l think
 

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You are a very strong person Maggie! :)
 

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Maggie...

you have my best and warmest thoughts and sympathies. My wife and I went through this with her mother a few years ago before she died in her late 80's. She had seen her husband die a few years before and most of her friends had died also and she simply felt the world she lived in was more foreign and more alien with every passing day. We are Catholic and there is a great prohibition against checking out of life on your own accord - but she would often say she just wants to die. She too ate very little and started not taking her various meds and simply gave up after a while.

Do you have anybody who can help with your mom? In our family it all fell on my wife as she has a brother who just a piece of crap and is useless for anything other than to cash in on what she left him.

I must confess that I had to wipe away a tear over the exchange of the I love you's with you and your mom. Keep that up.
 

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You're such a wonderful daughter, Mags. :)
 

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Just remember, when you're feeling frustrated...she went through all of this for you, once.
 

MaggieD

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Maggie...

you have my best and warmest thoughts and sympathies. My wife and I went through this with her mother a few years ago before she died in her late 80's. She had seen her husband die a few years before and most of her friends had died also and she simply felt the world she lived in was more foreign and more alien with every passing day. We are Catholic and there is a great prohibition against checking out of life on your own accord - but she would often say she just wants to die. She too ate very little and started not taking her various meds and simply gave up after a while.

Do you have anybody who can help with your mom? In our family it all fell on my wife as she has a brother who just a piece of crap and is useless for anything other than to cash in on what she left him.

I must confess that I had to wipe away a tear over the exchange of the I love you's with you and your mom. Keep that up.
I'm an only, Haymarket. But that's okay. I've never had too much faith in committees. ;) My cousin will step up any time I ask her to. She's stopping in today. Tom is wonderful. He makes her laugh and has taken over other responsibilities as I've tended to mom.

I had her for 2 weeks after she got out of the hospital. I brought her back to her home about ten days ago. But that's actually harder on me than having her here; so here she is. Her friend is 85 years old and, although I guess he tries, he's just not capable of empathy. He really tried to do what I asked him to do, but rather than as a cheer leader, more as a drill sergeant. Mom's happier here. WAY too much tension in her own home.
 

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I'm an only, Haymarket. But that's okay. I've never had too much faith in committees. ;) My cousin will step up any time I ask her to. She's stopping in today. Tom is wonderful. He makes her laugh and has taken over other responsibilities as I've tended to mom.

I had her for 2 weeks after she got out of the hospital. I brought her back to her home about ten days ago. But that's actually harder on me than having her here; so here she is. Her friend is 85 years old and, although I guess he tries, he's just not capable of empathy. He really tried to do what I asked him to do, but rather than as a cheer leader, more as a drill sergeant. Mom's happier here. WAY too much tension in her own home.
Your story - and the experience my own wife went through - only reaffirm my solid belief that women are so superior to men in so many important areas. I think your hearts are several times larger than the normal male Grinch sized heart who think fondly about Eskimo's and ice floes in moments of selfishness.

You will get through this Maggie - and you will get some stars in heaven as well.
 

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I'm an only, Haymarket. But that's okay. I've never had too much faith in committees. ;) My cousin will step up any time I ask her to. She's stopping in today. Tom is wonderful. He makes her laugh and has taken over other responsibilities as I've tended to mom.

I had her for 2 weeks after she got out of the hospital. I brought her back to her home about ten days ago. But that's actually harder on me than having her here; so here she is. Her friend is 85 years old and, although I guess he tries, he's just not capable of empathy. He really tried to do what I asked him to do, but rather than as a cheer leader, more as a drill sergeant. Mom's happier here. WAY too much tension in her own home.
My mum never made it to really old age, died at 70 after a mercifully short illness. She was fully independent until only a fortnight before her death, but I would hope that, had she lived to the age your mum has achieved, I would have had the strength of character and the fortitude to do what you're doing now. I wish you, Tom and of course your mum, all the love and strength you need. I also hope you keep being able to enjoy the good times that go along with the bad.
 

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I think the best indicator of what an awesome mom she is is that she raised you to be who you are today, Mags.
 

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I'm an only, Haymarket. But that's okay. I've never had too much faith in committees. ;) My cousin will step up any time I ask her to. She's stopping in today. Tom is wonderful. He makes her laugh and has taken over other responsibilities as I've tended to mom.

I had her for 2 weeks after she got out of the hospital. I brought her back to her home about ten days ago. But that's actually harder on me than having her here; so here she is. Her friend is 85 years old and, although I guess he tries, he's just not capable of empathy. He really tried to do what I asked him to do, but rather than as a cheer leader, more as a drill sergeant. Mom's happier here. WAY too much tension in her own home.
I know it's difficult MD..just remember..she did the same for you...:)
 

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Maggie, by taking care of your mom in this stage of her life, you're doing God's work. You have been blessed many times

All I have to add is to make sure that you don't get so wrapped up in taking care of someone else that you neglect yourself.
 

MaggieD

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I know it's difficult MD..just remember..she did the same for you...:)
Thanks to all of you for your so-supportive posts. I can't tell you how much I appreciate them.

Wolfie (and Kevin) I think about that every minute of every day. How do you thank the mom who gave you life? How do you do that?! How do you thank the woman who raised you virtually alone while her husband of 17 years spent family money on gambling and she worked 40-50+ hours a week in a factory for 35 years? Who saved her money so she'd never be a burden? Who loved you to pieces every day of your life? Your biggest fan. Your life coach. From her simple beginning in the hills of backwoods Kentucky, she brought the wisdom of the ages on how to live life. And shared it all with me.

How can you possibly thank a woman for that??
 

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Thanks to all of you for your so-supportive posts. I can't tell you how much I appreciate them.
How can you possibly thank a woman for that??
Nobody ever can. And no good parent ever demands it or wants it. What you do you do out of love and no further explaination or rationalization is ever necessary.

Itys like those lines from the Crosby Stills & Nash song.......... Teach Your Children Well

Don’t you ever ask them why
If they told you, you would cry
So just look at them and sigh
And know they love you.
 

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Thanks to all of you for your so-supportive posts. I can't tell you how much I appreciate them.

Wolfie (and Kevin) I think about that every minute of every day. How do you thank the mom who gave you life? How do you do that?! How do you thank the woman who raised you virtually alone while her husband of 17 years spent family money on gambling and she worked 40-50+ hours a week in a factory for 35 years? Who saved her money so she'd never be a burden? Who loved you to pieces every day of your life? Your biggest fan. Your life coach. From her simple beginning in the hills of backwoods Kentucky, she brought the wisdom of the ages on how to live life. And shared it all with me.

How can you possibly thank a woman for that??
Then keep her safe sweetheart!!
 

DiAnna

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How can you possibly thank a woman for that??
You are doing it now, Maggie. You have been doing it all your life, by loving her, caring about her, staying with her. *hugs*
 

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I brought mom back to my house the other day. I think she'll just stay here with me, though I'm not positive. I'm no doctor, no medical training, but I think mom has what's called Failure to Thrive. She's 86...can barely move one foot in front of the other with a walker...knows it!...her short-term memory is gone...she's incontinent and doesn't care. Hahaha!

Whether it's her medication (which she needs to stay alive) or a general decline makes no difference. It is what it is.

She's eating like a bird. Yesterday she had an Ensure with a banana blended in for breakfast. For lunch a scrambled egg, slice of onion, two strips of bacon and applesauce. For dinner, she had a few bites of bbq'd chicken, a bite or two of pickled beets, and a quarter of a banana late ion the evening. She also had some apple juice thruout the day.

Now that I know her bigger meal seems to be lunch (2 days in a row), I'll make sure she gets protein...but I'm not going to encourage her to eat anymore other than just ask her, "How's the chicken, mom?" Sometimes that prompts her to take a bite. Or, "How's the apple juice?" which might remind her to take a drink.

I took her for a short walk down the block, probably 100 yards there and back. It took a half hour. I have to tell her "Long steps, mom," or she tiny-marches in place. Her mind, other than her short-term memory, is pretty good -- but all worldly interests are gone.

I cancelled her physical therapy, occupational therapy (ha!) and visiting nurse. I know what has to be done and will do it as mom tolerates. Like yesterday's walk. I'll try to do that every day.

She's oh-so-tired...it's just about 9 a.m. here in Chicago, and she's still asleep. I'm just going to let her sleep as long as she'd like. I'll check on her in an hour or so . . .

Through it all, she's happy and content. We laugh at her foibles and frailty and I keep telling her it'll get better as we work on it.

And every night, when I tuck her in bed, I tell her, "I love you very much, Mom," and she says, "I love you, too," right back. ;)

Thanks for listening.
You know what? I think this is just what she needs most, and that's why she's smiling through all the struggles of age. Your company and compassion. Too many old people get little.

At a certain point, that makes way more difference than medical expertise ever could. We can't fix old, but everyone responds to love.

I just wanted to tell you that you're awesome for caring for her like this and keeping both your chins high as you do so.

I only hope, if he ever needs it, I'll be strong enough to do this well by my dad. I hope he never needs it, more for his sake than mine -- he's a private, independent kind of fellow. But if he does, I'll be there. We've actually never talked about it. He's never asked me. But he's into his 60's now, and I think about it more often.
 

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I brought mom back to my house the other day. I think she'll just stay here with me, though I'm not positive. I'm no doctor, no medical training, but I think mom has what's called Failure to Thrive. She's 86...can barely move one foot in front of the other with a walker...knows it!...her short-term memory is gone...she's incontinent and doesn't care. Hahaha!

Whether it's her medication (which she needs to stay alive) or a general decline makes no difference. It is what it is.

She's eating like a bird. Yesterday she had an Ensure with a banana blended in for breakfast. For lunch a scrambled egg, slice of onion, two strips of bacon and applesauce. For dinner, she had a few bites of bbq'd chicken, a bite or two of pickled beets, and a quarter of a banana late ion the evening. She also had some apple juice thruout the day.

Now that I know her bigger meal seems to be lunch (2 days in a row), I'll make sure she gets protein...but I'm not going to encourage her to eat anymore other than just ask her, "How's the chicken, mom?" Sometimes that prompts her to take a bite. Or, "How's the apple juice?" which might remind her to take a drink.

I took her for a short walk down the block, probably 100 yards there and back. It took a half hour. I have to tell her "Long steps, mom," or she tiny-marches in place. Her mind, other than her short-term memory, is pretty good -- but all worldly interests are gone.

I cancelled her physical therapy, occupational therapy (ha!) and visiting nurse. I know what has to be done and will do it as mom tolerates. Like yesterday's walk. I'll try to do that every day.

She's oh-so-tired...it's just about 9 a.m. here in Chicago, and she's still asleep. I'm just going to let her sleep as long as she'd like. I'll check on her in an hour or so . . .

Through it all, she's happy and content. We laugh at her foibles and frailty and I keep telling her it'll get better as we work on it.

And every night, when I tuck her in bed, I tell her, "I love you very much, Mom," and she says, "I love you, too," right back. ;)

Thanks for listening.
Best of luck to you Maggie as you start down this road. I did it for my dad for a year or so before he died and then for my mom for almost 7 years. It is incredibly draining at first and can look impossible those first weeks/months/years but you eventually accomplish a sense of equilibrium/normalcy, that allows you to continue. I'd strongly advise that you not turn down or stop homecare, if you can find someone good at it - my mom's care worker was an angel and saint and without her I'm not sure how I would have handled it and my mom loved her and loved her visits.

What you're taking on is not easy but I know for myself, when my mother asked not to be put in a home like her sister was, that I had a responsibility to care for the person who cared for me when I needed it. I'm glad it's over for me, but if I hadn't done it I'd feel awful.

God bless you.
 

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I brought mom back to my house the other day. I think she'll just stay here with me, though I'm not positive. I'm no doctor, no medical training, but I think mom has what's called Failure to Thrive. She's 86...can barely move one foot in front of the other with a walker...knows it!...her short-term memory is gone...she's incontinent and doesn't care. Hahaha!

Whether it's her medication (which she needs to stay alive) or a general decline makes no difference. It is what it is.

She's eating like a bird. Yesterday she had an Ensure with a banana blended in for breakfast. For lunch a scrambled egg, slice of onion, two strips of bacon and applesauce. For dinner, she had a few bites of bbq'd chicken, a bite or two of pickled beets, and a quarter of a banana late ion the evening. She also had some apple juice thruout the day.

Now that I know her bigger meal seems to be lunch (2 days in a row), I'll make sure she gets protein...but I'm not going to encourage her to eat anymore other than just ask her, "How's the chicken, mom?" Sometimes that prompts her to take a bite. Or, "How's the apple juice?" which might remind her to take a drink.

I took her for a short walk down the block, probably 100 yards there and back. It took a half hour. I have to tell her "Long steps, mom," or she tiny-marches in place. Her mind, other than her short-term memory, is pretty good -- but all worldly interests are gone.

I cancelled her physical therapy, occupational therapy (ha!) and visiting nurse. I know what has to be done and will do it as mom tolerates. Like yesterday's walk. I'll try to do that every day.

She's oh-so-tired...it's just about 9 a.m. here in Chicago, and she's still asleep. I'm just going to let her sleep as long as she'd like. I'll check on her in an hour or so . . .

Through it all, she's happy and content. We laugh at her foibles and frailty and I keep telling her it'll get better as we work on it.

And every night, when I tuck her in bed, I tell her, "I love you very much, Mom," and she says, "I love you, too," right back. ;)

Thanks for listening.
Maggie, what an angel you are! Many people don't believe in angels, but they are real, and they are here. Your Mom is a lucky lady to have one! :peace:

Good afternoon, Maggie. :2wave:
 

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Best of luck to you Maggie as you start down this road. I did it for my dad for a year or so before he died and then for my mom for almost 7 years. It is incredibly draining at first and can look impossible those first weeks/months/years but you eventually accomplish a sense of equilibrium/normalcy, that allows you to continue. I'd strongly advise that you not turn down or stop homecare, if you can find someone good at it - my mom's care worker was an angel and saint and without her I'm not sure how I would have handled it and my mom loved her and loved her visits.

What you're taking on is not easy but I know for myself, when my mother asked not to be put in a home like her sister was, that I had a responsibility to care for the person who cared for me when I needed it. I'm glad it's over for me, but if I hadn't done it I'd feel awful.

God bless you.
Good morning, CJ. :2wave:

Maybe we're old fashioned, but we take care of our elders as best we can. When my mom also asked me not to put her in a nursing home, I promised her I would not! I watched her take care of her parents...could I do less? And I agree with you on the visiting nurse program--they actually had some good ideas, and my Mom also liked their visits. She was quick-witted to the end, and told us she was ready to greet my dad, who had waited years to see her again. It was sad to have her leave us, but very nice to hear her optimism about her future! :thumbs:
 

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Good morning, CJ. :2wave:

Maybe we're old fashioned, but we take care of our elders as best we can. When my mom also asked me not to put her in a nursing home, I promised her I would not! I watched her take care of her parents...could I do less? And I agree with you on the visiting nurse program--they actually had some good ideas, and my Mom also liked their visits. She was quick-witted to the end, and told us she was ready to greet my dad, who had waited years to see her again. It was sad to have her leave us, but very nice to hear her optimism about her future! :thumbs:
Good morning to you too Lady P.
 

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Here's a picture of mom from 20 years ago -- she was 66. (Cave Point, Door County, Wisconsin)

Mom at Cave Point.jpg
 

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Mom's doctor has referred her to Palliative Care. The same nurse who tried to help her get better will try to help her on her final journey. She ate and drank very little yesterday. My cousin (like a sister) stopped in and brought her McDonald's fries. I think she ate six. Ha!

Although I tried one last time to get her to eat and drink yesterday -- I told her that the medicine she's taking is tricking her body into thinking she's not hungry -- it didn't work. Just a measly bite on a banana.

She's still sleeping peacefully -- I'm getting her a transport chair today -- "Until her change in medication kicks in," I've told her. (The doctor decreased a diuretic she's been taking; I do suspect her meds are too strong; and is anticipating another change later this week.) It's 11:30 a.m. I won't wake her.

Help me pray she goes in her sleep.
 
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