Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Can do/Can't do

Was going to write a - "Okaasan is on a roll and got herself out and delivered herself to the dentist, maybe she doesn't have dementia at all" posting.
(Thought: "God, my blog is getting boring, nothing to write about recently...maybe Okaasan really isn't that bad...")

But then.

She couldn't.
Last week she could. Today. Couldn't.

Me? I kept far FAR away from today's activities, by taking myself for a haircut at 3 pm - so I was not involved in any way with it all. Luckily!

Dear Son put two signs on the kitchen table reminding Okaasan to get her stuff together and leave for downtown by 2.13 for a 3 pm appointment.
He telephoned her to make sure she was heading in the right direction, and then 20 minutes later he called the dentist to check she'd arrived.
He's said "walk towards Sapporo Station". She'd walked TO Sapporo Station and was wandering lost.

He called her back several times to guide Okaasan  to the clinic and called 4 times to check she was there or not. Calls here and there to make sure she got there...finally at 3.40 pm.
So HE had the headless chicken routine. :-)

Me? I sat in the hair salon chair listening to relaxing soul music and reading the newspaper.....

I got home about 5.30 pm, just as Okaasan staggered home looking very knackered.
"Did you go to the dentist ok? You found it ok?"
"Yes, yes....but I am exhausted. I had an injection, I am tired...." She sat on the hallway chair for about 10 minutes before getting into the house.

I only heard the truth of the visit when HE came home and related the afternoon's headless chicken routine. And on Monday? He is taking a day off work and he'll TAKE her to the clinic himself.



This is the hardest thing about dementia - the can do/can't do.
You can never be 100% sure what she can do or can't
We probably do too much for Okaasan actually - because it is easier for us that way. We do all the shopping and cooking, the cleaning and laundry. She washes plates occasionally, dishes up rice and rubs old newspaper on her carpet to clean it...oh and ties up newspapers for the recycle box.
We should probably let her do more, or encourage her to do more.
But we don't have the time to be patient with her...

So, I was planning the dentist and taking her. Then last week she took off independently and got there herself, while I was wailing and knashing at the subway station.
Today - couldn't do it. Confusion central.

And tonight, the whole experience - certainly the confusion about losing her way - had left her tired and troubled. She didn't want any dinner and tucked herself on the carpet under the blanket, with the TV for company.

Can do/can't do/Can do/can't do....

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