Sunday, April 29, 2012

Today is Sunday and the schedule includes having Betty here for cards and dinner. It is also the day when I try to gather some of her clothes to wash, which is never an easy task as Betty is sure that she has worn her clothes only once or twice even if it is more like seven times.  One of the most difficult tasks in talking to someone with dementia is the tone and phrase you use to get them to do something or not do something.   Arguments always ensue if there is the slightest bit of tone that may make Betty feel "less than capable" so we try very hard to use the terms that have had success.  The problem occurs when she gets defensive because then "THE SPIN" as we like to call it can leave the whole attempt spiraling out of control.  

We have built a semi-concrete schedule to get important things done, such as hair washing and showering.  We sneak in washing the sheets and clothes trying for the nonchalant grab.  I do the shopping in such a way as I arrive with a cloth bag and put things away as fast as possible.  The pills have evolved into me filling the pill box a few days at a time and keeping all of them here at my house with her vitamins.

This schedule works for us for now but we realize we need to take a further step and get someone to come into Betty's home at least once a day to help her with dinner and pill taking.  Why we have so much difficulty moving to this is beyond me.  We talk the talk but it ends there.  We talk about going to a caregiver support group but again, all talk.  There is this exhaustion that takes over so that when you are not with Betty you want to veg on the couch and not think, move, or even do something that would be beneficial.

I am hoping that today will be a good day.  I'll try to do my part.

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