My experiences while living with my mother and her Alzheimer's Disease.(her birthdate = January 2, 1925)

Sunday, February 15, 2004

Feb. 15

Dear All,

Mama seemed to do pretty well yesterday. She tried her best to feed Tommy every time he took a breath. He was really good with her. He got her tax info together. So I will take that by the CPA one day this week.

Beverly called to tell us that Mama had a little episode around 2:30 this morning. She said Mama got really stiff and sweaty for just a minute or so, and then seemed to be okay. About 4:30 AM Beverly said she woke up to Mama stuffing cookies in her mouth saying, "I have one for you."

Around 4:30 this afternoon, Mama was sitting in her chair in the living room looking through a Spiegel catalog. I was watching Cary Grant in "Father Goose". She finished touching all the lovely things in the catalog, and then told me she was going to her thing. I got up to help her and noticed she was sweating big time. I grabbed up a towel, mopped off the sweat, and helped her to her room. She didn't seem too unsteady, but thought I had better stay close just in case. She headed for her bathroom and I left her on the toilet while I ran to get a nightgown for her. She was sitting on her bed by the time I got back to her room. She had gone to the bathroom, but luckily she didn't have any "poopy cookies" for me this time!

I helped her change into her night clothes. Her slip and bra were sopping wet. She slipped between the covers to get ready for sleep. I guess she must be feeling better since she has enough strength to call for me to come to her every 30 seconds or so. Since I am typing this and didn't rush to her as quickly as she thought I should, she just came in here to give me a cookie.

Two of my students sent stuffed animals to Mama for Valentine's Day. One is a black and brown bear holding a heart that says "hug me". The other gift is a white dog with valentine hearts on the bottom of its feet and under the ears. They are both so soft and cuddly, and I think Mama really likes them. They have joined her doll in her bed. I will send pictures in the next email.

We take her for the EEG tomorrow at 12:30. I think I will take off half a day if I can find a substitute so I can be there when they hook her up. I will send a report tomorrow.

Need to go check on her now--again--still. Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers.


from Feb. 13

When Mama went on her adventure in the ambulance, the emergency room
doctor wanted to do an EEG on her. They told us in the emergency room
to stop at the front desk and schedule the appointment. I stopped
there, but was told we didn't need an appointment. We were just to
bring her back whenever we wanted to have the test performed. Tommy (my
brother who is a doctor--brag, brag) called last night to see how we
were doing and suggested that we call to double check this information.

Beverly just called to inform me that we do need an appointment, and
they will not go on the emergency room doctor's orders since we took
Mama home. I guess it would have been okay if they had done it that day
or if we had put her in the hospital overnight.

So as of this moment, Tommy is on a plane coming in from Memphis
thinking he is going to meet Beverly, Penny, and Mama at the hospital to
supervise the EEG. Penny is home with a sick little girl. Michelle is
at the house with Beverly after working the night-shift. They are
waiting for Dr. Sacco to call back so she can order the EEG. We are not
totally thrilled with Dr. S at this moment since she has not spoken to
any of us since before the emergency room incident even though Penny has
called several times--no one from her office has called us back. I am
sitting here stuffing Fat Free Pretzels into my mouth wishing I had a
big piece of Chocolate Candy instead--guess it is a good thing I don't
have any handy or I won't be able to fit in the plane seat when Betty
Cooke and I head for Peru for Spring Break.

And I thought life in Matagorda County was going to be dull!!!

more as I know it,

from Feb. 11
Dear All,

I just wanted to let all of you know that Mama is okay. I got a call
from my Mama-sitters around 10:30 this morning saying Mama had passed
out. They called an ambulance. I ran out of the room like a chicken
with my head cut off. The emergency room crew took an EKG, CT (brain
scan--she still has one, but it is atrophied--which is part of the
Alzheimer's), tested her blood and urine (she was not happy about
that!!) They didn't find anything negative. They thought about keeping
her for 23 hour observation, but I cringed since she almost drove me
batty last time we did that. They let us take her home. Penny called
and said Mama went in the house, ate, and went to bed. Mama told Penny
to close that thing (the door) and go. So guess we tired her out. I
may be ready for a nap myself when I get home.

We will take her at another time for an EEG. My brother is coming for a
visit starting Friday so I hope we can schedule that test for when he is
here. He is a doctor and thus much better at handling these medical

I know all my students were concerned about Mama so that is why I wanted
to send this update. I should be in class tomorrow unless more problems

Hugs to all,