Sunday, December 30, 2007

Saturday, December 30, 2007

Picked up Mom today after church for lunch at Chinook's. Pamela graciously agreed to come with me...I felt like I needed her there for a little extra help and support. Mom was in a mood right away when I told her that we had a date to meet a friend for a movie at 4:15pm. She doesn't like it when my time with her is not open ended.

Mom had been watching a golf tournament with Tiger Woods. She started talking about how Tiger Woods had married a Swedish woman and they had a black child. She gets on this track which is very racist and I got really fed up with it. I told her to knock off the racist talk while I was walking her into the restaurant. Pamela was already inside getting a table. I explained to her that talking like that hurt Pamela's feelings and was just inappropriate. She lashed out at me and told me that I didn't have to come take her places anymore. Thus began our lovely Sunday lunch.

After lunch we took her to Rite Aid where she continued to be a bitch...telling me to run around asking the employees for the prices of items. She reads all the circulars looking for sales but gets confused as to which store has which sales. Of course, some of the things she wanted were on sale and others were not on sale. I finally just walked away from her for awhile and caught up with her at the cash register. She asked me where the calendars off I went to find them...picked out two she would like and took them to her in line ....where she complained about how expensive they were. I took them back to their shelf.

Afterwards, we took her home and dropped her off. I won't see her until Thursday when I will take her to Fred Meyer so she can buy some culotte socks. Her feet are swelling and she needs larger socks.

I am exhausted with her today and need a break from her negativity, critical behavior and abuse.

We ended our day by seeing National Treasure with friends and having a wonderful rollicking laughter filled dinner. One of our friends has a mother that drives her crazy that was good to hear....that I am not the only one dealing with a difficult parent.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Mom made it through Christmas. I picked her up about 1:30pm and took her to the cemetery to place a poinsettia on her Mother's grave. Her tears flowed as I placed the flower in the middle of the wreath I had left for Grandma a couple of weeks ago. The snow on the ground made it so pretty as we drove around looking at all the beautiful flowers and wreaths people had left in memory of their loved ones.

As we drove up to the house Mom got a chance to see the outside lighting I have been working on for the last several weeks. I have to say, it looked pretty good..with the deer, the Snoopy Santa, the kids from Peanuts singing, and the magnolia tree full of lights.

Pamela was finishing dinner which was good because Mom was hungry. We had a Honey Bee Ham dinner....ham, potatoes au gratin, green bean casserole and sweet potato souffle. We had cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory that my brother had brought Mom for Christmas.

We opened presents next....Mom was totally surprised by all the angel snow globe with music, a long shoe horn for getting her boots on, a nightgown, Frango chocolates, Daniel Green slippers (these were a huge hit), gingerbread cookies, and a handmade muffler from Pamela. After all of the excitement of presents and dinner, Mom wanted to go home.

The ride home was pretty hard. Mom cried ....big sobs...she feels so alone without Dad by her side. I have to say, I feel tremendous empathy for her...but she also drives me to distraction. We both tried to talk to her again about moving into an assisted living situation closer to us. She refuses to consider it.

She insisted on dragging her strong box with her important papers to our house and then back to her apartment. She thinks people are going into her apartment and stealing her things. I cannot convince her otherwise. This is the part where her paranoia really starts to drain me. Once I got her home and had unloaded all the presents, the strong box and the food that Pamela had packed up for her, I got her medicine and put her eye drops in her right eye. She continues to be in a lot of pain from the shingles.

Before I left, I arranged all of her food and gifts on her dining room table and on a chair by her Christmas tree. I thought it would be easier for her to pick up her gifts if she didn't have to bend down. I hugged her goodnight and left with a heavy heart. I wish the situation was easier for both of us...but especially for Mom. She is so lost, so alone, so frail. I have to keep reminding myself that she is choosing to live like this ...isolated in an apartment.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Friday, December 14, 2007

I wish Mom had gone through with the endoscopy. I went out there last night to have dinner with her and she was not able to keep any of her food down. I suspect that she is no longer able to eat is just too difficult for her to chew and swallow. I got her some canned fruit and tried to encourage her to eat it. She had a few bits and then vomited again. I then encouraged her to take a small drink of water so she could get her night time pain medicine down to help the pain associated with shingles. She drank the water...took the pill and then vomited that up as well. She has lost 5 pounds since August when we started charting her weight.

I am going to make an appointment with her doctor. She agreed to go but told me not to say anything to the doctor about what is going on...she says she doesn't want anything done to alleviate the situation. I don't know if this is depression...or if she is just giving up. I think I am morally obligated to be forthcoming with her doctor. Navigating Mom's health issues are not easy.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Well....I thought Mom and I had a pretty productive day and then the phone rang. I had taken her to the bank and to do some shopping earlier in the day. She wanted to go to the bank to shift money from savings into a CD. That all seemed reasonable to me, so I took her, sat with her and assisted her in the process. Mostly, all I did was repeat things to her that she had trouble hearing. After that we went back to her place, I made lunch and we sat and talked for awhile.

Later in the afternoon, just as I arrived home the phone rang. Mom was screaming into the phone saying the banker had made a mistake on her bank print out. She had asked for a print out of all her accounts. On the paper my name and address were listed because I am also on the account. I tried to tell her this, but she insisted that this was wrong and that she needed to go back to the bank. Having just been through another bank drama with her last week, I was in no mood for her temper tantrum or her demands. I hung up on her and called the bank to find out what was going on. As I suspected, I was right...I am on the print out because I am on the account. I called Mom back to explain this to her, but she persisted in saying there was some mistake. I finally just laid it on the line and told her there was no mistake and that if she wanted to go to the bank to have Mark take her on Wednesday when he comes for lunch. I know full well that Mark won't take her to the bank, he barely sees her or talks to her.

It is just so exhausting to deal with Mom ...she creates chaos where there is none. She is suspicious and paranoid all the time. I know this is all the result of her personality disorder, but I just get so tired of dealing with it. I am also beginning to suspect that she may have a little is difficult for her to understand things and she is forgetting words a lot lately. I have new respect for what my Dad put up with all those years in Arizona....

Friday, December 7, 2007

Friday, December 7, 2007

The drama continues with Mom. She woke me up at 7:00am this morning yelling at me about the damn receipt I took her from the cemetery for their plot. The receipt was made out to me instead of her...even though she was the one who paid with a check for the remainder of the balance. She was very upset and kept repeating that she was going to call the Better Business Bureau and how the parent company of the cemetery located in Texas could sue her. None of it made any sense...but it was a heck of a way to wake up. I am just exhausted with her dramas, her fears, her depression.

I went out and had dinner with her last night because she seemed to be having a really hard day. Dinner was fine, but I noticed that once I was there she didn't seem that interested in interacting. She just ate her meal in silence. I think she just needs a warm body in the room with her. After dinner we did a little Christmas decorating and talked about Dad. We both cried thinking about him and how much we miss him.

I am so exhausted from my own grieving and trying to deal with Mom all the time. I think she is having a particularly rough time because Dad is no longer there to act as the buffer between her and the world. I don't want to take on that role, but it seems that it is inevitable. Dealing with an elderly parent that has a personality disorder is no picnic...that is for sure!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Thursday, December 6, 2007

This has been kind of a tough week for Mom. I had a hard time with her on Tuesday because she tricked me into taking her to the bank. I thought we were going so she could get the cash to pay off her and Dad's cemetery plot. Instead, she went into the credit union and insisted on closing the account my Dad has had for a long time. She was paranoid about an interaction she had over the phone with someone from the credit union. They had asked for her social security number which freaked her out. She was going to be assessed a $500 penalty for closing down her CD but the banker could see that she was being irrational they waived the penalty. I tried to get my brother involved over the phone because I didn't think it was a good idea to close the account...but he ended up talking to Mom and making it worse. I was standing next to her and I could hear Mark swearing a blue streak at her...which upset her even more. That is the last time I will try to get him to help...because it really always make things worse when the two of them talk.

After we got done at the credit union, Mom wanted me to drive her all the way across town to pay off the cemetery plot. I told her I wasn't going to do was a waste of time and gas when she could just give me a check and I could drop it off on the way home. She finally saw that I wasn't going to give into her whim, so we went shopping, tried to have some lunch...but headed home because Mom got sick in the parking lot after lunch.

By the time I got her settled and back home I was completely and utterly exhausted. I have a lot of empathy for her and her situation, but she does nothing to make her life easier. I want her to be in an assisted living facility so she won't feel so lonely all the time. She doesn't want to be around a bunch of strangers. This is where her personality disorder really rears it's head....she doesn't want to be around people...but she is lonely. I am really feeling like there is no good solution to her situation. It makes me so sad that things have to be so hard for her. In the meantime, I need to preserve my own life and not let her consume me with her problems. Not an easy tightrope to walk with an ill and frail 87 year old woman.