This blog was formerly dedicated in 2009 to my Dad who died of Alzheimer's in 2013. It's been three years now...and I find myself missing blogging...so I am re-inventing my blog... because, after all, life is about moving through, and going forward...

Thursday, April 28, 2011

On The Other Side, Taking The Train Back...

Mom went to visit Dad today.  She found him in the TV room, basketball game blaring, asleep in his wheelchair...  Mom woke him with a kiss, and he happily greeted her, but seemed more interested in the game.  He asked her how my brother K____ was, and she told him he and his daughter had just returned from Vegas, playing in a Texas Hold Em tournament.  Mom told Dad my brother's daughter held out longer than my brother did.  Dad laughed...

"I've been worried K____ was on the other side and had to take the train back..."  Dad told her, looking very pensive.  Then he broke into a fit of coughing with that lousy cough he has.

Mom knew better than to question what he meant... She asked his caretaker for the day about Dad's cough and he assured Mom Dad was getting breathing treatments and medication three times a day.

I will be curious to see, if Dad gets transferred back to the hospital for some reason... January 24th he was discharged from the hospital back to the nursing home.  He generally stays a week, then the nursing home starts a new chart.  This April 24th, he will have been back to the nursing home 3 months...we will see...

Dad's lunch of diced beets, cucumbers, some fish, and scalloped potatoes arrived with two glasses of milk, his coffee and gingerbread dessert.  While Mom was feeding him, she dropped a couple of beets in his lap (covered in a towel bib), and put the spoon down to pick it up with her fingers.  In the process, she brushed Dad's left hand and she noticed he flinched.  She asked him if his hand hurt and he told her it was sore and did hurt.  Dad has arthritic hands and fingers and some times his hand and/or fingers swell and cause him pain.

Again, Mom double checked with his caretaker and he told Mom they knew about it.  After Dad finished his lunch, Mom could tell he was ready for a nap.  "Pickles", one of Dad's favorites, offered to take Dad to his room and tuck him in.  Mom told him to have sweet dreams and blew him a kiss good-bye...

Mom leaves tomorrow for a weekend retreat in Carlsbad with her friends from church.  She is looking forward to it and I know she will have a great time...

After reading Mom's email, I called the charge nurse to inquire about Dad's cough.  I wanted to know if they have checked to rule out pneumonia.  She told me they had done a chest x-ray.  OH REALLY?  I let her know no one had called to let me know.  I have keeping notes and I plan on letting them know all about this at his Care Conference.

I asked if I could talk with Dad and luckily, he was sitting right in front of the nursing station.  Right away I could hear Dad's voice in pain, complaining about his sore hand, making it difficult to hold the phone.  We only spoke for a few minutes, because when I explained to Dad AFTER we talked I would ask the nurse to put an ice pack or something on his hand... Dad immediately gave the phone to the nurse...

She told me she could not do anything until she got doctor's orders.  She said they were awaiting a phone call from the doctor.  Again, I asked why I was not called about Dad...and she told me Mom had been in earlier... I had to remind her I keep notes.  I am the first contact and should be called, regardless if Mom is there or not.

The nurse just called me.  It is 10:45pm.  She let me know the doctor finally returned their call and he will come to see Dad tomorrow.  He did not want the nurses doing anything until he sees Dad...

Please Lord, keep me strong in faith and hold Dad close....Amen...

11 comments:

Mari said...

I'm sorry he's still not feeling well. They should be able to give him something for pain without contacting a Dr. An ice pack can be used any time, and I would think they would have a PRN order for tylenol. I would check into that. I can't imagine there not being something set up.
I'll be praying for him to feel better.

Chatty Crone said...

Nursing homes - not great - but what can you do? I hope he is ok.
sandie♥

Nancy said...

I know how frustrating it can be with a loved one in a nursing home, I work in one myself and have been there for 30+ years. I do hope your father will get good care. I found you through Mari's blog.

Cmom said...

I have been following along with your blog about your father. I know this is terribly frustrating. We went through the same thing with my aunt. Even being close and being there on a regular basis does not guarantee that the home will not make mistakes. We were constantly having go arounds with the nursing home staff and administration. It is just difficult. Will keep you and all your family in prayer.
Lisa

janis said...

Donna~ how frustrating...
I thought of you this afternoon.
My Mom called and because she is manic, my sister & I have to confer as to how much she is exaggerating about Dad's health.
He is Handicapped, has Dementia, COPD, Diabetics, and a bunch of other health issues. He is suicidal (has attempted 4 x's that I know of) and he is mean. I love hm, he is my Dad, but it has been a difficult relationship with my parents my whole life. Mom, tells us he is really sick now (Sis saw him Monday & he is as can be expected with his issues). I know she wants me to come out to see them. Made the guilt plead.. They live out of town, and after a conversation w/ my Dad on Wednesday.. lets just say I know when to stay a distance. I tried desperately to help (many times) especially this past December/ January, finding a wonderful place with his wishes, that can accommodate his many needs...but they got cold feet and changed there mind a week before move in. Mom's a martyr and feeds on drama. Its so difficult not stepping in however they make it clear that they want our help but ONLY the way they want it and not what is best. Its emotional and draining. I love them so much, but every time we gather...I am a wreck after.
sigh... You are such a together & loving daughter. I admire you so & appreciate how much you do for your folks. I wish I could be more like that. Then again, I wish the dysfunctional crazy family life we shared was/is normal.
Prays for your Dad's comfort.

That corgi :) said...

amen to your prayer, Donna. I hope the doctor can figure out what is going on with your dad's hand plus really listen to his chest to see if anything sounds "odd" in there. I hope your mom has a great retreat in Carlsbad; hoping the weather will be nice and it will be a time of rest and relaxation and learning with her and her friends from church. Wonder if they are going to see the flowers?

hang in there, so very soon you'll be down here to see your dad for yourself!

betty

The Words Crafter said...

Don't you just love it? Wonder why they can't do the simple thing and contact you? And why would they let him stay in pain like that? Ugh!!!

I hope whatever it is gets cleared up quickly and that your mom enjoys her trip.

Have a great weekend!

gayle said...

Just catching up. I so hope something is being done to help your dads hand and that his cough is better!


Love the pictures you post of the little ones in your previous post!!

Carol Kilgore said...

I've been a caretaker, too. It isn't easy. Lots of prayers.

Angela Ackerman said...

Oh my goodness, how frustrating. I don't like talking ill of those in the system who I feel for the most part do their best to help patients, but unfortunately mismanaging happens and we have to be so on top of things. Thank goodness you are there for your dad, keeping tabs on everything. No one should have to be in pain like that--how ridiculous, needing a doctor to get an ice pack?

Nezzy said...

It's difficult when you can't get the staff or the doctors to cooperate with you. I know a nurse can ice without a script from a doctor. I know they are busy but they are there to help.

I do hope your daddy gets the care he needs to be comfortable and you Mama has a good break.

You are a good daughter sweetie.

God bless and have a wonderful day! :o)