It’s been one of those days. The Pink Flamingo has spent far too much time, lately, on this blasted blog. The condo is falling down around me. I need to take out the trash. The wind is rough. It’s dry, and Tuesday was one of my worst allergy days, ever. The mind just isn’t working all that well. I gave up about 10AM and just started taking Sudafed, then buried myself.
We’re also having some major Alzheimer’s changes. Right now, I’m really annoyed with the so-called specialist my mother used in Las Cruces. When my father was diagnosed 2 years ago, he called her on the phone. There has been one follow-up call. He never met with us, never discussed what was going to happen, other than to tell my mother he didn’t think, at my father’s age (87 at the time) that the disease would progress all that much. That was the worst thing he could have done. She held on to that, like a life preserver. Now, though, we’re well into Stage IV, pushing Stage V.
I can’t find a specialist to help us. Just finding minimal care is far beyond what my parents can now afford. We always thought there would be money for this sort of thing, but now, there’s not. Caring for my father is literally killing my mother, emotionally and physically. Evidently, here in New Mexico, the state Alzheimer’s Association is pure shit. The offer nothing.
It’s hard to know where to go from here. What I do know is that avoiding the issue of Alzheimer’s is the worst thing a person can do. So many of the problems my family is now dealing with, the financial disaster, could have been stopped if we had been willing to take the steps necessary to dealing with early stages of Alzheimer’s.
That’s the worst part, I think, not dealing with the early stages, and then having to pick up the pieces, afterward. My mother, of course, doesn’t want to talk about it. It is in the past, but it does need to be discussed. We create our own messes in life. When Alzheimer’s Disease sets in, someone else is required to pick up the pieces of that shattered life.
You learn not to trust people, after being screwed so many times. It’s terribly frustrating. There are all these people and sites that say they are there for you, but that’s a crock. It’s almost like every person for themselves – if you are lucky.
Alzheimer’s is not a poor person’s disease. Fact is, it’s a disease for the wealthy. They are the only ones who can afford it, this day and age. Care facilities are out of the question. Aside from the cost, you can’t trust them. They’re like a place to put your loved one in, so they can figure out a way to kill them, without all the ethical questions. You turn the back, there’s a slip, a broken hip, and voila they’re dead in two weeks.
It isn’t easy. I’m writing this around 2AM Wednesday morning. My mother just called. Something is going on with the air conditioner. My father had fallen a little while ago. That is becoming a real problem. She needed to turn the A/C off at the breaker. The door to the cellar has been padlocked. She had to make sure my father was in bed. She had to disconnect her oxygen. Then she had to get a flashlight and the key to the padlock. She is terrified of the stairs. I stayed on the phone with her for nearly 30 minutes while she tried to figure out the switch box. She never did. She couldn’t find the shut-off on the unit itself. My Durango is in bad shape, and I can’t afford to get it repaired, so I can’t even drive down to help them.
Let’s face it, the next step is giving up living in my condo so I can go down and take care of them. It’s not something I want to do, at all. They aren’t online. The service there is pathetic. I’m not sure just how to do this. I don’t mind admitting I truly detest their house. All of this is so frustrating. It’s also going to make a good book to help people deal with aging parents.
The bottom line is you can’t trust people. They are going to do their best to rip-off the seniors in your life. They’ll take every advantage, even people you least suspect. Seniors are prey. The predators can sense pending dementia where the family member is too close. The financial establishment is not to be trusted, even people you think have your best interest at heart.
Right about now, I really don’t know all that many people who do.
Just remember, the worst part about Alzheimer’s Disease is avoiding the fact that your loved one has it. If you can catch it early, there are some interesting treatments. B-12 injections every three weeks are a must!