Life with Mom
This is a story of a shared life with Mom after her diagnosis of Alzheimer’s Disease.
Earlier this month, Mom went for her six month Neurology check-up. We got both good news and bad news at this appointment.
The good news was that Mom hasn’t progressed with her Alzheimer’s as indicated by a short session of testing. The regular questions of what the date was and what floor we were on in the building we were at were asked. She aced them all. She was asked to draw a box (copy from a picture) and couldn’t do this. She’s never has been able to though. She attributes this to her complete inability to draw anything.
I did my part of the assessment that day which required me to fill out a questionnaire about how much assistance she needs for bathing, dressing, and meal preparation. Also questions about her mood, and community involvement. The testing picked up no changes. She’s still independent with these daily activities. We were certainly happy with the overall results.
I asked Mom why she thought after almost two years after her initial diagnosis, while also knowing that her cognitive decline started a few years before the diagnosis, that there’s been no change. She thinks it’s because she pushes herself to stay engaged in daily activities including paying bills and balancing her checkbook. Also maintaining her medication management and meeting friends weekly for a few hours of card playing keeps her connected. She also continues to drive around town during day light hours, and often heads to the grocery store and the post office.
She’s not surprised about the outcome of this appointment. She remembers that the first time Dad took this test the Doctor stopped it after the third question. He couldn’t answer any of them. And Dad, she explained, actually had a personality change with his dementia. One that was characterized by a lack of judgment long before he was unable to answer basic questions. His impaired judgment lead him to be involved with a group of crooks who wanted him to invest in Copper.
One thing about Dad before his personality change: No one could have ever pulled one over on him. But here he was, about to invest in Copper (actually be robbed) when Mom found out and put an end to the fiasco. Mom knows she has not had a personality change which we all know can be very frightening and lead to unpredictable happenings.
Now for the bad news: Our Nurse Practitioner, Alice Brown is leaving the practice. This is terribly upsetting for us. Alice is one who knows her business, is completely devoted to her patients, and always gives us hope. Her reasons for leaving have nothing to do with the practice or the discipline of Neurology. She will be providing medical care to people who are in need of pain management. Her next group of patients will be in good hands. We thank her for her never-ending honesty and her up-beat and realistic guidance. We’ll miss Alice, and will look for the same value that we received from her in the next provider.
This talk with Mom about Dad and his involvement with the diabolical Copper people all got me wondering about the value of a penny now that copper is sky-high?
Maybe Dad should have invested.