Good care

The hospice nurse, doctor and social worker were here for Bo’s six month evaluation.  Their conclusion: “If he didn’t have such good care,  he would be in much worse condition.”  Hospice care will continue for him because he shows multiple signs of decline despite our efforts.   We are there to prevent falls, to keep him well fed and clean,  to give him comfort and security, but we can’t stop the regression.

I was away for a week (next blog) and when I returned yesterday, Jon said he had seen  a serious decline during those seven days, a decline that started before I left.  It had nothing to do with me being away, and everything to do with his disease.  He has left the plateau that I described several blogs ago; he is less alert and more sleepy, more confused, off- balance and weak.

Jon told me that a couple of days ago Bo was on the sofa and signaled that he needed to go to the bathroom.  Jon helped him to stand, but he tottered off-balance and didn’t know  how to move his feet to take a step. “What do I do?” he asked Jon.  That same thing has happened on the stairs. He was stepping sideways and holding onto the railing with Jon holding his hands, but now sometimes he stands at the top, facing straight down  with no idea what to do next.

He is actually even having  difficulty standing without help balancing.   He stoops over more,  and often when he sits, his head is hanging forward; he tends to lean toward the right, which is apparently one of the signs of  Alzheimer’s regression. The Hospice masseuse comes every two weeks now to massage his neck and shoulders.  She explained that the purpose of doing this is to keep the muscles from tightening, which the brain apparently signals the body to do.

Sometimes now he eats only half  of his food, while two weeks ago he ate all of it, and once again,  he may fall asleep at the table. It is as if a cloud of fog has settled over him and he lost contact with everything around him.

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10 Responses to Good care

  1. Scarlett79 says:

    You are his angel. I can’t even imagine how hard this must be for you. Just know that you are not alone and there is a force around that is helping you. You are in my thoughts and prayers ❤

  2. MCI Alice says:

    When I press “like” on a post like this, I always feel the need to comment that “like” is inadequate because I don’t like reading it, but I need to read it and I deeply appreciate reading it. And I so admire your strength and resilience. And can’t wait to read about your well deserved week away.

  3. Mary Smith says:

    I agree with MCI Aliice. This is not a post to ‘like’ but clicking on the like button is a way to show our appreciation for what yopu have written. I well remember that step down from the plateau and the readjustments we have to make to deal with this next stage. Thinking of you.

  4. Paula Kaye says:

    I am so sorry! Richard was on Hospice for 18 months! The decline is so hard to watch. Sending you big hugs!

  5. Arleen Stolzenberger says:

    Words can not express what I am feeling reading this update. I hope you and Jon realize what a blessing you are to Bo. Keeping you, Bo and Jon in our thoughts and prayers.

  6. My deep sympathy as my dad passed of cancer last Aug…mom died when I was five. It’s a miracle that dad lived as long as he did! Either way I have faith that all people go to Heaven. Faith keeps me strong in tough times. Thanks for stopping at my blog 🙂 Your new friend, Jackie

  7. I agree, to click like is not enough. Know you are all in our thoughts.

  8. Monica says:

    Do you mind me asking at what age your husband was diagnosed and at what point does someone with Alzheimer’s qualify for hospice? My husband also has emphysema. Thank you & God bless. Monica

  9. My husband was diagnosed at 71, although signs were there at least a year before. He was 80 last November. I am not certain about your hospice question. In our case, he was hospitalized 4 times last Aug.- Sept. with kidney stones, infections, blood clots in his lung and seemed to be entering his final stages of the disease. The hospital recommended that we consider hospice because of our continued trips for emergency care. The hospice doctor determined that he qualified for their care. As we now know, he rallied and almost returned to his previous condition for a while, but the disease is relentless and decline returned.

  10. I can add this: he is incontinent, is in danger of falls so he needs help most of the time, he needs monitoring and often help eating, can’t bathroom alone, …..

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