Friday, 21 October 2011

Option C?

Didn't work.
Well, half worked, I guess.

Lunchtime stuff: she didn't eat at all. May have been because she'd just come home from the dentist and didn't feel like it.

Dinnertime she ate the raw fish, ate the salad, didn't eat the potato salad because it was too hard....and couldn't WAIT until 7 pm when the rice cooker was she went OUT for more food.


That wasn't the idea at all.
Why couldn't she wait? Or why was she trying to eat dinner before 7 pm? It's always been the time we do dinner. I found the shopping receipt that shows she was in the local supermarket at 6.47 pm....if she'd waited 30 mins there would have been freshly cooked, steaming rice in the rice cooker.

Ho hum.

Option C, which we've just come up with is : to use hot flasks and food containers. Cook up lunch in the morning before we go to work and leave it for her on the kitchen table.
All she'd have to do is open up the flasks and the hot food, rice and soup will be inside. Like food delivery service, but delivered by US to the table at 9 am when we head out to work. We used a lunch delivery service 2 years ago in winter. It was fine, but in the end Okaasan got a little bored with the food and asked us to cancel it.

This weekend we'll go and look at flasks etc and see if Option C is workable. Can't do any more burned pans.
I know this all seems like mountains-out-of-molehills - but that's the daily life stuff that occupies our minds with Okaasan. How to make things easy for a lady who has failing abilities, while maintaining the cheerful facade that "nothing is wrong"....
SHE thinks she can heat up stuff in pans and feed herself. 
We know that left to herself in the kitchen she burns the pans and leaves uneaten or half-eaten food out on the counter or table.
She'll never go hungry because she can find the food on the table or fridge and help herself, and she can go shopping and buy pre-cooked or cold food.
But the rice/egg/soup cooking in the pans isn't so successful anymore and as winter arrives she won't be able to get out and shop.
We have to find a way of giving her hot food at lunchtime, without her using pans and the cooker.

On a different topic: Okaasan and her memo making.
She is always doing this. Sitting in front of the TV making memos about recipes and TV shopping telephone numbers etc etc. When she isn't writing memos on scraps of paper she is picking them up from the table and carpet around her and looking at them thoughtfully, setting them to one side....and then minutes later picking up the same memo.
It's obviously a self-preservation method against the deep-down knowledge that she IS forgetting important stuff.

The other day one of the memos ended up mixed in with our post. Maybe she'd left it on the kitchen table and it got scooped up with letters.
Anyway: it's for a recipe for noodles and sesame sauce, other random bits of writing...and this:

"To prevent the onset of dementia it is important to focus on yourself and give up trying to be a good wife and mother". (this was in Japanese of course).

How true! Yes, absolutely.

It comes back to what I reckon is my biggest question about dementia - how far Okaasan understand her own condition - truely, deeply inside herself.
I think she must know, must worry about it and hopefully accept that we will help out when things get a bit mixed up.
When she sees programs on TV about dementia does she think - "oh, I should watch this, it may help me"...or is it more "one day I may be like this, how sad for these people".??

When she is asking me about which trash goes in which box, or what day of the week it is, or what she ate for lunch - all of those kind of questions about things she would usually know, but now isn't sure about - is she acknowledging that things are falling away bit by bit?

Anyway. Interesting to find Okaasan making memos about dementia!


  1. It's a good idea to try option C I think. I worry about your house burning down with all those burnt pans - that's what scares me the most!

  2. Me too! ...or that my finger nails will get down to the bone with all the pan scrubbing.
    We DID thankfully buy an electric cooking range that cuts out when the pan surface reaches a certain point, or if the pan has been on for an hour with no movement.
    THAT is a big relief.;-)