Sunday was a beautiful sunny day with no winds. It was a perfect day to take Mom out for a milkshake and a drive. I had a diet soda. We were enjoying ourselves and chatting, occasionally spotting a field of geese or a flock of seagulls. The sky was clear & sunny and she enjoys looking at it. I could tell she was tiring so we headed back to her cottage at assisted living. The fun ended.
“Who lives here?” she said.
“You do.” I said.
“Are you sure?” she said.
“When we get inside you’ll recognize it.” I said.
“Hmmmfp! If you say so.” She said.
In her room she recognized her pillows, but where were her clothes, she asked. In the closet. I showed her.
She was so totally gone….when did I put her clothes in that closet, where were her washer & dryer? Could she go upstairs? Why wasn’t she in her apartment? She never had an apartment. How would she get to work? Where is her car? Does the TV work? Where is Pete?
“Mama, Pete has passed away.”
“Pete passed away????? When?” She barely whispered.
Fear crept into her face. Her bluest eyes were piercing my heart. I wanted to run. Help me Lord.
We repeated that conversation several times before she was calm enough for me to leave. When I left she was still upset that she had to sleep there…but I HAD to go or cry in front of her. I felt like I was leaving my baby at it’s first day of day care.
Where was that nurse? I had to find her & when I did, I lost it. Sobbing like a baby as I tried to explain, “Put her back on the higher dose of risperdal, Now!” The nurse managed to get me calm and assured me that she would be put back on the higher dose. The people who work with dementia patients have seen it all I guess, even a sobbing daughter.
Her dosage of risperdal was recently lowered because they felt she was over medicated. I don’t want my Mom to sit around like an over medicated zombie but I don’t want her upset, fearful or stressed either. That’s not necessary, it can be controlled.
This morning I called & they had just faxed in the new prescription.
My H & I had an appointment today very near Mom’s cottage. My original thought was to stop in & check on her…..I couldn’t do it! How would I handle it if a similar situation occurred? In a few days the meds will take hold, then I’ll go back.
One of my very favorite pictures of Mom & Pete, taken at their vacation trailer in Rehobeth Delaware. They had a boat & loved to fish for flounder in the Chesapeake Bay. Those were wonderful years for Mom. Don’t they look so happy & loving?
Risperdal is an anti psychotic drug sometimes used in Alzheimer’s patients to control anxiety, delusions & hallucinations. It is a black listed drug.
I really don’t mean these posts to be so sad. I believe posting about this journey with Alzheimer’s is therapeutic. So many others have traveled and are traveling this way along with me. I’ve received comments from many who are experiencing these same things right now. I appreciate your comments and your prayers. Please keep me posted about your situations and I will keep you in my prayers. I know the Lord is guiding me, pushing me & sometimes carrying me through this forest of the unknown. I have become closer & more loving toward my Mom. I am surviving. I don’t know why Mom was stricken with this horrible disease, but I’ve come to accept it. Hopefully I’ll be able to use this experience to help others. Pray for a cure.