It's hard to say, we never know when the end will come for any of us, it just happens when it happens. For a Care Giver of someone with dementia, the time can linger... a very long goodbye that creates incredible stress in our lives.
Poop and pee are daily challenges. Always in the middle of the night my mom seems to pull off her diaper and mess on the floor. She gets confused. Half awake she believes she's on the toilet and begins to empty her bladder. The sensation of pee on her feet always seems to wake her fully, making a traveling mess as she is frantic to find the toilet.
Yesterday, somehow she had shit on her hands. Fortunately Belkis was here and was able to wash her up. My mom made a mess in her pants, she missed the toilet. It was not pretty.
Belkis said to me, "The cat shit on the floor, I cleaned it up." I looked at Savita, sitting on the chair and replied, "No, that had to be my mom. Our cats never crap on the floor, ever." Belkis still believed it was the cat who pooped.
My mom, she tried to tell Belkis that she pooped on the floor accidentally. Belkis insisted with my mom that it was the cat. My mom's reply, "Oh ya, it had to be the cat."
When I was helping my mom to her bedroom I said to her, "Oh, what about that cat shitting on the floor?" My mom laughed so hard that she had to hold on to me so that she didn't fall over. She loved blaming the cat for her accident. She also enjoyed that Belkis blamed the cat and not her.
It's sad to see my mom decline. Typically it's a gradual change but I'm noticing a big change in her state of being. I don't know if it's because I'm lightening up on her diet, letting her eat things that I typically would have said NO WAY you can't have that. Food definitely affects her mental state.
Depriving her of foods that she wants to eat also plays on her mood. She is happier eating sandwiches when she goes to school. I found a gluten free bread that is phenomenal, Udi's is the brand. I have even broken down and gotten her gluten free cookies so that she can have cookie snacks with her friends at school. She is enjoying herself more during the day, but she's also hallucinating a lot more too.
My mom is having more difficulty finding words, even with acupuncture. Is it the junk food that I'm allowing her to eat? I don't know for sure but I am making an assumption that the food is dimming her light.
Life is better for me than it was a year ago because I have consistent and real help. My mom is out of the house every day during the week, off to a day program where she gets to socialize and talk with real people. She loves going to school, well she likes it once she gets there; just like a kid.
Her end is coming. I can see it in her eyes.
|Ed: the last picture I had taken of him before he passed. |
You can see it in his eyes.
I'm ready for my Care Giving days to come to an end. A feeling that is bitter sweet. I know that once I'm free, it means that mom has finally passed through the veil and joined all those she has been longing to be with for such a long time. I am sad to see my mom leave. It's been oppressive caring for her over the last few years, watching her decline and slip away is heavy.
I can see it in her eyes. I miss my mom. I know that she's gone, that I'll never be able to speak to her again, not like the old days. I care for a stranger most days, occasionally my mom pops in but she's coming around less and less.
Life as a Care Giver has taught me volumes. I'm ready for the next chapter of my new life to begin, a chapter that I will make count because we just never know when our eyes will point toward the sky.