Tuesday, January 10, 2006

No So Lame Blogger Excuses And Idle Threats

Posting has been rather non-existent as of late an even then somewhat lame...except the vote for IMAO post...totally not lame. And I can tell many of you haven't voted yet (because I checked) so I am once again forced to idle threats of physical violence. You go vote IMAO or I will have to HURT you! Got it?

Good. :)

Anyhow, as is probably well known by now, my grammy resides with me and has since last spring. What is not well known is that she was in the first stages of Alzheimer's disease, on the threshold of the second stage and had been residing with my mom for a few years before. My mom assisted my grams in caring for my grandpa after his stroke and throughout his remaining years before that. My mom rocks and totally deserved a break from caring for others. She still helps plenty but she now has an element of emotional and physical freedom that she's not had in a very long time. She's even gone back to school recently (yay!).

Back to my point. Thanks to the drug Aricept, the progress of the disease has been drastically slowed. We have had some bad phases though, and with each bad phase it seems that a little more ground is lost although the bad phase doesn't last more than a week or two. Until most recently, that is. After visiting the doctor last week, who should be well informed on the subject of Alzheimer's, no intelligent help or advice was available. He basically said "This is to be expected" repeatedly, although he should know that Aricept is best for one year only, she's been on the drug for more than two years, and there are other medications available.

After waiting for 4 months for this appointment I expected him to explore choices, not say "Well, this is to be expected" so I'm thinking that a second opinion is in order. Perhaps we'll discover that a new doctor is in order because the goal here is to at least try to slow the progress of the disease to a point that a nursing home will not ever be necessary. My grammy had the worst fear of nursing homes and while she didn't foresee Alzheimer's and would not have held that choice against any of us if there's absolutely no other choice, seeing to it that her wishes are met if at all possible is essential. The goal is also to not allow personal emotions to either get us to that point sooner than necessary or refuse to admit it if that point is reached.

Wish me luck because the latter may be a problem in the future, I don't give in easily and neither does she.

For now, we are experiencing what is either an extra long bad phase or perhaps a permanent change. So the blogging has taken a back seat to other household projects I'd planned for spring but am doing now so my grammy will assist (read: pick on and laugh at me) and have something to focus on besides the confusion (and sadness) the disease inspires. I mean, imagine having to be told and living through the sense of loss each and every day, sometimes more than once, that your spouse and son among other loved ones have passed away; This is Alzheimers. Staying really busy is better than good so I'm entertaining her with my mad redecorating and home improvement skillz. Stuff falls on me lots and apparently this makes her really happy. haha

On a brighter note, we're very lucky that she's reached her current age without the disease having taken over completely. Anyone who knows anything about Alzheimer's will know that it is amazing that someone (even without Alzheimers at the age of 83) is still able to do so much for themselves, strive to be polite, and keep the ole sense of humor alive. I find myself laughing with her about certain things that one might not expect either of us to laugh about at all. Many times it is my trying to care for her that we are laughing at. We have lots of "Oh crap, if the young and sane one loses it then where will we be?!" moments, which prove to be pretty danged funny indeed. I thought by caring for her I'd learn a whole lot about what I'm made of, and I am, but I'm learning more about what tuff stuff this terrific lady is made of.

So, don't think for a second that I'm sleeping on the job while those pesky liberals harass our beloved Alito and make fools of themselves! I'm just juggling things from time to time with the peace of mind that you guys won't let them by with the b.s. without (well deserved) ridicule for even a second.

I'll be back to blogging (and ridiculing pesky liberals) real soon so remember, vote IMAO. Or I'll HURT you! ;)

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