How do I explain this?
In August and September, Bo took a terrible nose dive. The kidney stone, fevers, blood clot in his lung, irregular blood pressure dragged him down to the point that he was almost unresponsive — at times he was unresponsive. He lost weight and became so weak that some days he couldn’t stand, couldn’t go the 15 feet to the bathroom; he fell, spoke in gibberish, couldn’t hold up his head when he sat or stood. I learned how to nurse him, filled the house with appropriate supplies, and Hospice stepped in to help.
Since coming home from the hospital, he was upstairs where we ate with him, cared for him, and sat as he slept. My friend came for dinner one night and we ate upstairs by the bed.
We struggled to give him pills and make sure he was comfortable and clean; we thought he was in his final decline. Doctors said the blood clot would “snowball,” his pressure was too high, all indications were bad. I began to think all the worst thoughts.
But that was two weeks ago. Since then he has gradually begun to improve, surprising us day by day as he became more clear, began to joke, wanted to get up, was hungry, wanted to come downstairs. He knew me again (most of the time), began his frequent “I have something to do” periods. Now he is almost back to where he was BEFORE August.
On Saturday I was upstairs talking on the phone and Bo was sleeping on the living room sofa, or so I thought, when Jon called up to me.
“Nancy, where’s Boris?”
“On the sofa!”
“No, he’s not.”
In a moment he called back, “He’s out front picking up leaves on the driveway!”
This was the first time in so long that I don’t remember the last time he did it. In fact, Jon had said, “Well, at least I won’t have to rake the yard every day with him like last year.” Looks as if he might have to after all.
The Hospice nurse reminded me that this is often the Alzheimer’s pattern, a deep fall, then a recovery, but never back to where you were; there’s always some decline. This morning he awoke confused, but that’s how it was before August. He still does some very strange things like put the towel into the toilet or not understand that the food on his plate is indeed his to eat, but he’s still better.