Friday, April 30, 2010

Exercise

While on our recent cruise we daily navigated the long hallways back and forth from our cabin.

Mom would often remark about the long walks and I would respond,

"Well, it is good exercise."

One day when I said this, Lily said,

"I had my exercise 20 years ago and I haven't touched it since."

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Short term memory

Today Alice told me Lily's memory is running "minute to minute" and she gave me an example.

Earlier Emily was on the computer and we passed her heading up the stairs (which is about 5 steps)
and when we got to the top your mother said,

"Emily must be at work.  I haven't seen her today."

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Shopping

This afternoon Ryan came home from school and asked if I wanted to go shopping to which I replied another time. Before I knew it he was back saying, "See you later. I am going shopping with Lily."

About 2 hours later they arrived home and he was laughing as he told me about their shopping trip.

"Well, I asked Lily if she would hold my gray jacket while I tried something on. I came back a short time later and noticed my jacket missing."


"Lily where is my jacket?"

Lily replied, "What did it look like?"

"It was gray."


"Oh, that was ugly. I didn't like it so I put it back."

Fortunately he was able to locate it fairly quickly all folded up neatly on some shirts.

He said they also visited Old Navy and while there he turned his back on Lily to look at some shirts and when he turned back around he found her straightening and folding a big bin of loose t-shirts which he said made the employees happy!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Dr. Oz


Emily and Lily were in the kitchen together, Lily looking at magazines and Emily fixing breakfast preparing to leave for dance rehearsal.

"Dr. Oz...........who is that?"


"He is a Dr. on TV who knows about everything.  He brings actual body parts to his show for everyone to see.   He has even brought poop on his show to talk about."

"Hey I'm trying to enjoy my coffee and you bring that up."

Monday, April 26, 2010

Lily giving Advice

Ryan and I went to pick up Lily at St. Leonards and he ran in to get her while I sat in the car. 

Once back in the car with Lily he told me that when he approached Lily inside she was sitting next to another dear lady who was obviously further along in the process than Lily. Ryan said this lady had her hands clenched, her head and arms were shaking, and she was staring in a glazed manner.

When Lily saw Ryan, she stood up, patted the lady and said,

"Well, just think about it, ok."

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Up Yours!



Dan, Lily, and I were sitting at the kitchen table eating dinner and on the computer monitor nearby was a slide show flashing pictures of Ryan and his buddy Craig who plan to attend University of Cincinnati next fall.  

Suddenly Lily gestures with her 2 fingers in her "Up Yours" motion at the boys picture on the computer screen and turns to us to say,

"I thought perhaps he (Ryan) might turn around and give it right back to me................... but he didn't."

Dan & I looked at each other and burst out laughing.  The mind of the Alzheimer patient sure works in a mysterious way.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Let's Cuddle


                                                    "Let's cuddle, Lily."


                                                     "I don't want to cuddle!"

                                                     "It will be fun."


                                                    "No it won't. I don't like to cuddle.
                                                            Never have,Never will."


                                                       "Let me up."


                                                                        She's up!

                                                                        She's down.

                                                                   She's up again.

                                 "You little shit. I am going to get you."













All I can do is laugh.  Lily is like the little sister Ryan never had and she loves every bloody minute of it!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My Bottle of Wine

Just home from the grocery and classic Lily just as we were leaving had to grab something "to buy" and what happened to be right in front of her but a large bottle of wine for $5.99.





 Bringing it up to the register and quite pleased with herself Lily pulled out her billfold and grabbed a $20 bill to hand to the clerk knocking the bottle slightly in the process.






Laughing Lily said,  "See I'm wobbling already..............

        the bottle I mean."  

Monday, April 19, 2010

Pillows

This morning mom and I were making up the bed and she said,

"You have more pillows than you do money"

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Response to Reader - I understand the long distance thing

 This post was published a while back at the Alzheimer Reading Room site.

http://www.alzheimersreadingroom.com/2010/04/response-to-reader-i-understand-long.html

 I hear you and have walked in your shoes.

My mother lived several states away when the early symptoms of Alzheimer's dementia presented. Like you describe, she also did not respond well or take my concerns seriously. What an extremely frustrating time that was for me trying to help her long distance. I would not wish to go back there again but want you to know many of us understand your situation.

Looking back I realize now that not only was her memory affected, but to a greater extent her judgment. She did not believe anything was wrong with her apart from “normal aging” thus she did not take seriously any measures I would try to instill.

She would not take her medications appropriately and to this day I often wonder how much better she might be now if she had taken her thyroid and Aricept correctly and consistently. But there again you see how her judgment was off.

My mother had never been social so had no interest in developing that area so I really did not even try to go there.

I understand your dilemma and if you do not have someone who can monitor her more closely and encourage her it can be very hard to handle long distance.

There are geriatric case managers out there that do help families with long distance problems but your mom would have to be receptive. My mother was not.

When I tried to set up services she would not cooperate and actually convinced most people she was fine and nothing was wrong with her. Unless one is with the early stage dementia patient day in and out often times the average person sees nothing amiss.

My best advice would be to take her to a geriatric specialist for a consultation if you haven’t already. She may also be suffering from depression. I would have her thyroid checked to rule out thyroid disease.

You do not say if she is taking her medicines correctly and I would not count on her word for that. Somehow you need to monitor this. (I am assuming she is on some “memory meds” hopefully Aricept and Namenda). Looking back I wished I would have paid someone like a neighbor to do it as opposed to an agency that was not that flexible or easy to deal with. Plus mom would have been more receptive with someone she knew.

Perhaps with proper medications and an anti-depressant (if determined necessary) she might be more agreeable to increasing her exercise and eating well. My mother lived mostly on ice cream, cereal, coffee, and sweets. (Judgment again)

Good luck to you and I wish I had more to offer. I will tell you that moving Mom closer was the best thing I did and I wish I would have done it sooner.

Continue to educate yourself on this disease and the Alzheimer's Reading Room is a great resource. Not only the education but the support from all the followers helps one to realize that you are not alone.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Basketball Banquet







"Look what I found?  And there are no bites out of them."

Friday, April 16, 2010

Irish Joke

 Had to publish this since it relates to Lily in two ways--being Irish and forgetful not necessarily drunk!
 
 
 
Two women were sitting next to each other at a bar. 
After a while one looks at the other and says,
“I can't help but think, from listening to you, that you're from Ireland.”

The other woman responds proudly, “Yes, I sure am!”

The first one says, “So am I!  And where about in Ireland are ye from?”

The other woman answers, “I'm from St.John's, I am.”

The first one responds, “So, am I!!  And what street did ye live on?”

The other woman says, “A lovely little area it was in the west end. 
I lived on Warbury Street in the old central part of town.'

The first one says, “Faith and it's a small world.  So did I! So did I! 
And what school did ye go to?”

The other woman answers, “Well now, I went to Holy Heart of Mary, of course.”

The first one gets really excited and says, “And so did I. 
Tell me, what year did ye graduate?”

The other woman answers, “Well, now, let's see. I graduated in 1954.”

The first woman exclaims, “The Good Lord must be smiling down upon us!
I can hardly believe our good luck at winding up in the same pub tonight.
Can you believe it?  I graduated from Holy Heart of Mary in 1954 me self.”

About this time, Michael walks into the bar, sits down and orders a beer.

Brian, the bartender, walks over to Michael, shaking his head and mutters,
“It's going to be a long night tonight.”

Michael asks, “Why do you say that, Brian?”

Brian answers, “The Murphy twins are drunk again.”
 
 
 

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Birds

Lily to Ryan...


"Do you hear that?  All those birds chirping?"



"I think there must be something wrong with them.  They keep chirping.  I've never known birds to open their mouths like that."

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Visiting Emily at University of Cincinnati 2006


Kerry, Lily, and Hannah (my granddaughter)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Not a grown up





 Whenever I leave one of our pugs Rudi becomes very sad.  He usually will not eat for a couple of days and tends to have accidents. 


Apparently this trip was no different.  Emily was complaining to Lily about Rudi peeing on the carpet and Lily said, 

                "Too bad he's not a grown up..... We could tell him off real fast."

Monday, April 12, 2010

Coughing at 78

I called Emily from Charlotte during a layover Saturday and she was telling me how the week went. 

"Watching Lily or watching the animals is fine....just not together.  It is too much.  I would have to be watching Lily every second or she would be letting the cats out or washing the dishes without soap."

Keep in mind that our kitty has been very sick and is on about 6 different medicines which complicates things.

Even though Emily said that,  she did a fabulous job taking care of Lily and all our pets---2 dogs and 3 cats.

During our converstion she told me Nana said something funny this morning.

Here is Emily's story:

Emily had Nana Lily at the counter eating her cereal and  was trying to fix her hair at the same time.  (Emily had to be at dance rehearsal from 10-2pm and she was taking Lily with her)

Emily said, "I need to fix this flat spot."  (where Lily's head had rested on the pillow as she slept)

Lily said, "I have a bald spot?"

Emily laughing, "No, a flat spot."

"Oh good I thought you said a bald spot.  But I may have a bald spot when I am 80."

"Well Nana since you are already 78 I don't think we have to worry about that."

Nana who had just taken a bite of cereal choked at that thought and started coughing, and said,  "I'm 78?"

"Yes, you are 78, Nana."

To which Lily replied,  "Well no wonder I am coughing."

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Post from Alice

Flying home from Cabo at 30,000 feet I decided to check my email and saw the below note from Alice, Lily's health aide, who visits her usually once per week. However, this week she graciously volunteered to come one evening also to help with Lily while we were gone.


I was very excited to see what she wrote and am looking forward to getting home and seeing if I notice any changes or if this is just one of her better days, although "her better days" are coming less often. I would like to think she is benefiting from the Exelon patch which she has been wearing the last 3 weeks or so.

Note from Alice


HOPE YOU HAD A GOOD VACATION AND RETURNED HOME SAFELY....




TONIGHT WHEN I WENT TO YOUR HOME AND STAYED WITH ELIZABETH, I WAS TOTALLY AMAZED AND I WAS JUST WONDERING WHAT KIND OF MEDS SHE IS ON, AND WHAT IS THE PATCH FOR??



SHE WAS ALONE WHEN I WENT AND SHE SAID, "I JUST GOT HOME, AND EMILY WENT TO HER DANCE. SHE WILL BE BACK LATER. SHE LEFT AROUND 5;00PM."



THERE WAS TWO PACKAGES AT FRONT DOOR. ELIZABETH BROUGHT IN THE LIVING ROOM, AND SAID THEY WERE FOR DAN. HE WAS ON A TRIP, SO SHE WOULD JUST PUT THEM THERE FOR HIM, WHEN HE GOT BACK.....



LATER, SHE SAID, "EMILY WENT TO DANCE. I DON'T KNOW WHAT SHE IS GOING TO DO WHEN SHE GETS OUT OF SCHOOL. I DON'T THINK YOU MAKE MUCH MONEY DANCING"



LATER, SHE SAID, "I HAVE BEEN GONE ALL DAY. SAME PLACE I GO EVERY DAY, WHERE THERE IS A LOT OF PEOPLE." I ASKED WHAT SHE DID THERE AND SHE SAID, "MOSTLY, JUST WATCH TV AND SIT AROUND AND EAT. TODAY THEY WANTED US TO GO OUTSIDE AND WALK, BUT TOO COLD AND I DIDN'T WANT TO GO."



LATER, SHE SAID, " DAN AND KERRY TOOK RYAN AND WENT ON A TRIP. THEY WILL BE BACK TOMORROW OR SUNDAY. THEY HAVE BEEN GONE A WEEK."



"I MISS RYAN, I AM SO USED TO HIM BEING AROUND, WHEN HE IS NOT HERE I MISS HIM"



SHE SAID, MORE THAN ONCE, SHE MISSED RYAN. AND SHE MENTIONED YOU AND DAN SEVERAL TIMES.



AS A RULE, ELIZABETH DOES NOT REMEMBER NAMES, AND I STARTED WRITING DOWN WHAT SHE WAS SAYING, BECAUSE SHE SEEM SO IN THE PRESENT.

WHEN I TOLD HER, IT WAS TIME TO GO GET READY FOR BED, SHE SAID SHE WOULD WALK ME OUT TO THE CAR. BUT I TOLD HER THAT SHE NEEDED TO GET READY FOR BED BEFORE I LEFT.



SHE WENT UPSTAIRS AND PUT HER PJ'S ON AND CAME BACK DOWN STAIRS AND SAID, SHE WAS GOING TO LEAVE A LIGHT ON FOR EMILY, BECAUSE SHE WOULD BE HOME SOON .



I MADE SOME SPAGETTI AND BROUGHT SOME FOR EMILY TOO. ELIZABETH AND I ALSO ATE A BLIZZARD FROM DAIRY CREAM. SHE LOVED IT.....



SO, AGAIN HOPE YOU HAVE A WONDERFUL TRIP...



ALICE C

Friday, April 2, 2010

Thursday, April 1, 2010

What do all these pictures have in common?



                                 You guessed it----FOOD or DRINK!