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Carers Anonymous Meeting

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date

+++DetEcTive+++

+++DetEcTive+++ Report 23 Jul 2009 08:39

It's ages since I posted here....and by the looks of it, the same for a number of people.

Hope no news/posts means that everything is ticking along OK.

Huia

Huia Report 23 Jul 2009 09:51

Not too sure about that, DET. My OH had too many cups of coffee at dinner last night and he was up several times in the night. He normally turns on a little low wattage lamp which is low down at the foot of the bed (the switch at the head end) so he can find his way but on one occasion he turned on the main light and just about blinded me. I had 'only just' got to sleep after tossing and turning for a couple of hours or so. It then took me another hour or so to get back to sleep and in no time at all he had brought me a cuppa. Very tired all day. Must get to bed soon. I just hope he is more careful tonight.

Huia.

Bob78

Bob78 Report 23 Jul 2009 22:54

Hi All

If everyone is quiet it may not be a good sign. Had a bad couple of days myself. BH had a fall, had one of her turns and after recovery lay downin bed for a couple of hours. When I went in to help her up noticed some small blood spots on the sheet. Lifting up her sleeve found a flap of skin of about four inches had been rubbed off. Had some good dressings from last time. Made appointment with Doctor only to be told she would not go as she was fine. Cancelled with much difficulty because of difficulty in explaining. Returned to lounge to see that the bandages had been removed and one wound was oozing blood and giving BH enough concern to agree to see the doctor. Hopped in the car and Doctor took us straight away. I think she was more concerned with me than the patient. Everything fine now but the stress made me realise than the next step of residential care is getting closer.

Huia

Huia Report 24 Jul 2009 01:10

Bob, you have my sympathies. My husband insists he can look after himself but I know it is not safe to leave him alone at home. He also wants to help me do things. If I am baking I have to let him stir the cake for me. I finish it off properly afterwards. In many ways he is like a young child. If we go shopping as soon as he sees sweets he wants me to buy some. The other day he got out his key/coin purse and counted out the money and bought a couple of small bars of chocolate for us. It gave him a sense of independence, although when we get home I always insist on putting his wallet and keypurse into my handbag so we dont have to turn the house upside down looking for them the next time we want to go out. I tried telling him once that he doesnt need them as I am always with him and I can pay but he has his male pride. I have to let him show some independence but it is so much quicker to do things myself.

Huia.

Jean (Monmouth)

Jean (Monmouth) Report 24 Jul 2009 19:26

I dont like leaving my OH as he can go hypo so quckly, and I can recognise the signs before anyone else. Also he has now started to have vertigo, and has to be helped to stand to get to a chair.

Huia

Huia Report 24 Jul 2009 21:12

Another bad night. We had run out of decaff coffee so maybe it was all the caffeine he had at dinner time. I had been asleep for a little over an hour when I heard a noise. Went to kitchen and found hubby putting boiling water into a 2nd teapot - one was already two thirds full of tea. I told him I wasnt drinking tea at 10.50 pm. I played on my computer while he had 2 cups of tea and then instead of heading back to bed as I expected/hoped he would he got out his plate and got 'breakfast'! We eventually both got back to bed, but he was up 3 or 4 more times in the night and on the last occasion he brought me a cuppa and toast. I dont eat toast and I didnt want a cuppa at that time, whenever it was, it was still dark, but whatever the time was I wanted to sleep. I wont be fit to do much today.

Better get on and sort out the stuff to take to todays monthly recycling. Too much to leave for next month.

Huia.

Huia

Huia Report 5 Aug 2009 20:08

It is almost a fortnight since anybody commented on here. I have been commenting on other threads.

I had trouble getting to sleep last night. My mind goes into overdrive. I might be thinking about an email I received from relative that I tried to contact 3 yrs ago, or I might just be singing a song in my head, but whatever, my busy mind keeps me awake. I got up after 2 and half hours and had half a sleeping tab but that didnt shut the mind down so an hour later as I had a headache I got up again and had 2 panadol tabs. My mind kept on but I must have had a little bit of sleep as I found this morning that OH had made himself a cuppa - 3 teabags in the pot with some water still in it, and the milk jug still on the bench. Just as well it isnt summer at present.

I am glad we got a stove with removable hotplates. The other afternoon when I was having a snooze on the settee (I can drop off quickly in the daytime!) he decided to get dinner. He filled a small saucepan with chinese cabbage leaves and boiling water to the brim. He turned on all the hotplates although when I arrived in the kitchen to see what the noise was he had turned them off again, but an empty saucepan sitting on one of the plates was extremely hot. I now remove the hotplates when I am not using them. He is getting to be a danger.

Better go, he is washing the breakfast dishes so I will have to dry them.

Huia.

Huia

Huia Report 9 Aug 2009 10:30

My OH went missing for over 5 hours yesterday, and I had 4 police cars and one offduty policeman with his father on a quad bike and another neighbour on a quad in our drive. The 3 guys on the quads had looked for him while the first policeman was grilling me, before the others arrived. The last one had a police dog but just as it arrived my OH was reported as seen walking down the road so one of the quads went to fetch him. Just as well he got home when he did, it was just on 5 pm and I dont know whether he could have survived a night in our bush at this time of year.

Our son has suggested that it is now time to think of getting him into a secure unit permanently. Son lives in Rotorua and says if OH was down there he could walk his dad at weekends and if I sell here and move to Rotorua I can also take OH on outings. I am reluctantly coming to accept the idea. We built this house ourselves over 12 years and have lived in it for 39 yrs so I am rather attached to it, but I guess I cant let sentiment get in the way of common sense.

Huia.

LindainBerkshire1736004

LindainBerkshire1736004 Report 9 Aug 2009 10:45

Huia
So sorry to read about how your husband got lost. It is a real worry, especially for you on your own. You cannot be on duty 24hrs 7days a week. It is really wearing you down. I can read it in your posts.
I haven't added to this thread before, but was concerned as you seem to be talking to yourself on here with nobody else adding.
My MIL had dementia and spent the last 4 years of her life being cared for in a home. My FIL could no longer cope, he finally realised. We lost her 4 years ago now, but he is still sprightly at nearly 86 and 2 years ago moved to a village to be with his younger son, in a warden controlled flat. He has company, dinners out, cofee mornings and afternoons and family within walking distance now.
He is very happy and we don't have to worry about going into West London to see him. So much nicer for all the family.
Please do consider your son's suggestion. Hard as it will be it could be the best thing for all of you. Giving you time to recuperate and show your loving care for a few hours a day instead of being worn out and unable to cope or indeed become ill yourself.
Just an outsiders opinion. but I have been involved with my own family care too. Both my daughters have worked in a care home for the elderly and also a residential village for those with many care needs from the young to the elderley.

Take Care Huia and think about it please

Regards Linda :o) XxX

Huia

Huia Report 9 Aug 2009 18:32

Thanks, Linda, I really am considering it. My main problem is that I have so much 'junk', that I dont want to have to take if we move and I have been frantically trying to get rid of as much as possible. My sister is staying with me at present to help and says she will come again. I am also not sure how easily the house will sell for various reasons. But it will happen sometime.

Huia.

Jean (Monmouth)

Jean (Monmouth) Report 9 Aug 2009 19:34

Huia, do consider moving. We lived in our last place, a farmhouse, for 28yrs, but my health meant I could no longer cope with such a large place, nor the isolation as I was no longer allowed to ride my motor -bike. We have been here for 14 yrs and it is so much easier. I do miss the freedom having no neighbours brings, but you cant have everything. My OH still refers to the other place as home, but he knows full well we couldnt go back.

LindainBerkshire1736004

LindainBerkshire1736004 Report 10 Aug 2009 10:08

Have been keeping you in my thoughts Huia. Hopefully you can come to some decisions soon. I hope your husband is Ok and hasn't wandered again such a worry for you. I also hope you are getting a little more sleep yourself.

Such a worry you see your children through their formative years and then parents or other relatives seem to take their place in our caring role.

Take care of yourself too Huia

linda :o) XxX

Huia

Huia Report 10 Aug 2009 10:40

Thanks, Linda and Jean. There are so many lovely caring people on GR, it is very heart warming to know we do not have to keep our problems to ourselves. I have always felt that it helps to tell others, even if they can do nothing except sympathise, just getting it off the chest is a relief.

I am hoping to visit a secure village in my home town (about 30 mins drive away) on Thurs morning while my daughter looks after her dad. She works afternoons so cant do a lot to help me. I emailed a friend to ask if she knew anything about the village and she said she knew several people who had lived there and it was a lovely place, so I hope the workers are just as lovely. My OH will need to be reassessed as at present we are entitled only to 28 days carer support. If we made that place permanent for him I might not need to sell the house, but it would be extra driving to visit, whereas if I go to live in Rotorua as my son suggested with OH in a place there, it would not mean so much driving. But my home town will do for starters if they have a place vacant soon and if it is suitable. At least my daughter and her children would be able to visit him some days of the week so that I would not need to drive over there every day. So much to do, so much to think of. I think I need a sleeping pill to put my brain to rest so I can sleep tonight.

Huia.

Bob78

Bob78 Report 10 Aug 2009 11:28

Hi Huia

Sounds as though things are getting dangerous with activity around the stove. I found about a year ago that I had to put a dead-bolt on the door and as I said to a friend who said that her husband had gone outside on a freezing night to neighbours at 2 am with the dead-bolt on for ensuring safety you could then put on your C.V. jailer amongst all the other skills you have.
I had been told that even though the time may not have arrived, it was important to have inspected several facilities and have your name down on the ones that you think are suitable. After our last little episode I did that, but for the moment just take one day at a time.
On the question of moving as you get older it gets harder to make the decision and you have to balance your own environment, family and friends which will be more important than ever for you when your OH is in full time care. He will adjust more easily than you will. Or should I say that he is the one that has to adjust more than yourself.
All the best

+++DetEcTive+++

+++DetEcTive+++ Report 10 Aug 2009 20:47

You have been given so much good advice, Huia. You have coped over the last few months and no doubt years and helped others by sharing your experiences. It's a two way traffic.

Take care of yourself
XXX

Huia

Huia Report 11 Aug 2009 10:19

Thank you Bob and DET.

I am looking at a place on Thursday which is expecting a vacancy next week. It is a 35 min drive from here which means I would not need to sell immediately, although it will be a bit of a tie driving that far each day, but then my daughter and grandchildren live in that town so they might visit on some of the days when I want a break.

My OH will need to be reassessed as we are only entitled to the 28 days carer respite. I dont mind paying for a week or 2 while we wait but our savings wouldnt last too long if we had to pay permanently.

I will be so relieved when OH is out of here, which is not to say that I dont love him but I am so tired and almost at the end of my tether. I am sure you all know what I mean.

Huia.

LindainBerkshire1736004

LindainBerkshire1736004 Report 11 Aug 2009 10:41

Huia
I really do hope that you like the care place on Thursday and that it is suitable for your husbands needs. As you say if it is near your daughter you won't have to go each and every day to see him. It should give you a chance to recover yourself too, before deciding to move to another home for yourself in a more relaxed time frame.
I too think he should get the assessment for the care hwe needs now and that you cannot cope on your own for ever.

Take care and please keep us up to date with how you are.

Hope you are sleeping OK too

Linda :o) XxX

Bob78

Bob78 Report 11 Aug 2009 10:53

Hi Huia

It would be a good idea to get a re-assessment. I know that there are the two options. the two weeks respite care then eight weeks at home. The other is having a certain number of carer days allocated throughout the year. Then you reapply if you have used up all your allocated days. I do not think that number is affected by your OH attending a day care facility for several hours for several days each week and then coming home. Some even pick up several from homes in a mini van, some in a taxi, but I make the trip in the car
I was told recently by the team for Mental Health for Older Persons that my BH had been discharged for the time being, I suppose as they had done all that they thought was needed at the time of the earlier assessment to provide necessary relief. However if the doctor made another approach then they would be involved again to see what other additional assistance was required in the light of OH and yourself as well. They are aware that your health is the key to the wellbeing of OH at home.

Huia

Huia Report 11 Aug 2009 20:14

Hi Linda and Bob.

The reassessment would be for them to see that he needs full time care in a secure unit. Our place is not secure enough, at least if I am the 24/7 carer. I thought initially I could probably cope with him on Sat and Sun at home, possibly take him up to W.Auckland on Sun morning to go tramping with his 2 'girlfriends' which he has been doing every Sunday for years, but as he gets worse they might not want the responsibility, though I dont think he would be any trouble. All he lives for is walking/tramping and I cant see him getting a lot in a rest home unless I or daughter or grandchildren or son from Rotorua take him out for walks. Perhaps I could contact the local tramping club to see if somebody would take him occasionally but first we have to get him into the place.

I slept well last night having taken a sleeping pill to knock me out quickly. Phil did bring me a cuppa at 1.55 but I said no thanks, too early and went back to sleep.

Today we might drive to the Botanic Gardens. I could manage a gentle walk there (my feet give me a lot of trouble) and then get a can of petrol on the way home so he can mow the lawns. He was going to do it the other day but found he was out of petrol. I am going to have to learn to do it myself when he is incarcerated!

Huia.

Huia

Huia Report 14 Aug 2009 04:43

The assessment team (one woman and one doc) came out this morning. My daughter came to give me support. The team asked me and OH lots of questions then asked all present including OH what they thought should happen. The doc then said he thought OH should go back with them to Middlemore Hosp. to have a blood test and general check of his health. He asked if OH would go with them. OH showed a lot of reluctance so I turned on the taps full bore and told him he needed to think of me and my need for a break, so he reluctantly agreed to go. I suspect the hospital just wanted him out of here as it is not the best place to be, neighbours not very close, plenty of places to get lost, and OH indulging in some dangerous practices. I am hoping they are looking for a vacancy in a long term secure unit. But if not, I at least have a few days to look after myself. Our poor cat who thinks the world of him (I merely fill her dish) and he of her has been wandering around and looking up at me enquiringly.

Huia.