weekly blog--one for the ages
My wife received the email below from a childhood friend. It has been edited to fit with this blog space. However, the message is poignant for anyone who or will face this situation.
Apologies in advance for the group email (bcc). For those who have been asking and I cannot reach all of you by phone. Thanks for your thoughts and good wishes…
Here’s a summary of where we stand as of today, Sunday:
So things are not great with my mom. My mom is having a tough time, however she is in the area’s best hospital with the best doctors. She began having trouble around June 1 with a diagnosis of cardiac affibrulation and was put on Prodaxa anticoagulant. She didn’t feel well, but was holding her own on June 13. I/we thought as a result of the medicine, pretty much things got really bad last week. She was hospitalized on June 22. All of the docs say this is not a response to the drugs.
Anyway, it appears that she had a series of strokes causing tremors and weaknesses on her right side so she cannot stand or walk on her own or at all. Her right arm is affected as well, and she cannot control it when she tries. At rest, no tremors, at least not now.
She was able to feed herself with her left hand, though slowly. She is not having trouble swallowing or anything, but has some slight speech problems which we believe are stroke related. She also has the cardiac Afib so that they need to give her medicine for that.
Basically, she’s miserable. It’s hard to see her this way. She will have occupational and physical therapy, however, the most difficult part right now is that she is very, very fatigued and doesn’t have much energy or desire to do much of anything but sleep. The hospital is very good and is making her get in a chair to eat. She’d be just as happy to stay lying down, which is very terrible for lots of reasons.
She has had many tests. The EEG shows they are not seizures. That’s the good news. The MRI of her back shows that even though she’s having back pain, there is no additional injury to her back from a compression fracture when she fell in November 2014. However, she fell twice last week while still home. Also they did an MRI of her neck and spine and all is ok. The MRI of her brain showed some damage, and it showed some slight bleeding which could account for some of her problems, although her symptoms are not typical.
I will speak to the doctors tomorrow and see what they plan for next week. My hope is that they will set her up for rehab and she will be moved to a rehab center. The biggest problem we see is that she seems to not want to do anything. Motivation is at the zero level which is tough. She really cannot talk long on the phone and is not up for visitors because of the fatigue.
Hopefully, she will find the inner strength to get going again and eventually return to her apartment, even if it means with a full time aid and getting around in a wheelchair for awhile.
I will try to keep you posted through email if there are any changes.
Learn more: www.confrontingaging.com/caring-for-elderly-parent.html