This journal, beginning in 2010, records the journey for Bill,55, Lyn,50 and Jack, 16 as we learn about and try to understand dementia and how it will change our lives.
Wednesday, August 8, 2012
Six months later...
Wow. It is so difficult for me to put into words what all has happened over the past few months. For one thing, when I try to think back it is all such a blur. The divorce Bill requested is in limbo because of his cognitive decline. So, thousands of dollars later... the courts deemed me the guardian and conservator. My head is still swimming with all the paperwork and demands I have to fulfill. I begged my attorney to find another guardian, but they pretty much gave me no choice in the matter. It's taking me some time to heal. I get mental blocks when I try to weed through all of this, all of the legalities and paperwork demands absolutely make me cringe. I don't even know where to start! These issues, however, only make me realize how far we've come. The mind chatter that drives me crazy at night is getting easier to redirect. I realize all that chatter is the voice of fear, and I am learning how to step into that fear, melting it away. It is the strangest spiritual journey I could have imagined. I hope I learn and learn well from all of this. I hope I can help others find their wings and fly.
Bill continues to live in the Prairie Sunset Nursing Home in Pretty Prairie Kansas.http://www.prairiesunsethome.org/ As you can see, he wears a staff name tag. They have allowed Bill to maintain dignity by allowing him to believe he is part of the staff. With his Masters in geriatrics, it has made his transition way easier than it could have been. When I was faced with finding a unit for Bill, I figured I would have to find a lock down unit. His desire for independence and his lack of comprehending how dangerous his actions are made me an inferior care giver. Oh, it was out of my hands. I've often compared it to living Fifty First Dates in the nightmare version over and over. By the grace of God, the doors opened to a facility who makes him feel useful, needed, and valuable.
Bill has difficulty recognizing Jack these days.His memories fall back to younger days. This is a very difficult situation for Jack. He loves his dad and it is difficult for him to face. He's a tough kid, though, and I am very proud of his resilience.
Bill forgets he divorced me. He gets pretty upset with me at times because he of course wants to drive his car, come home like others when he is off work, and he of course wants to see his dog, Maggie. On really bad days he asks his "boss" (Social Services Director, Michelle) to call his attorney. Bless his heart. I hope I have the kahoonas Bill shows when it comes to survival. He can still talk you into next week, very authoritative too, I might add. He can make you question if he actually does have Alzheimer's with his verbal skills. The things he has forgotten are things like how to drive a car, how to tie a shoe, how to thumb wrestle or play checkers or tic tac toe. Those things aren't important to him, however. He has adjusted well, and proudly shows his new velcro shoes.
Prairie Sunset has given me some real serious peace of mind. I still fight feeling like a failure, not being able to care for Bill until his dying day. The safety of others has to come first, however, Jack and I included. I appreciate your continued prayers. Hugs and kisses, everyone. Lyn