Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Is the (clock) radio on?

Yesterday when Bob woke up at 2:34 a.m. and asked if I wanted him to turn the coffee on, I was reminded that I'd not blogged about the coffee and radio saga.

Six days out of seven I am awakened by my clock radio playing music at 5:40 a.m. This is the point when my DH generally goes to the kitchen and flips the switch on the ready-to-go coffee pot. He enjoys being able to do that for us and I love the coffee in bed service. Several weeks ago he came to the bedroom door about 3:30 in the morning and sweetly asked the sleeping me, "Ready for your coffee?"
I did not respond nicely: "We don't officially get up until the radio comes on."
He replied, "The radio is on!"

He had turned on the radio in the kitchen! When I listened carefully, I could hear it playing.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

You're always the boss!

We’re sitting watching the BBC news and sipping coffee when Bob says, “Here feel here.” He wants me to feel the beard growth on his neck just under the chin line. I do.
Then I’m asked to feel the other side. Again I do. Now he’s off on a tour of his face. I balk. “Why do you want me to do this?” “Just do it.”

(Is this a secret commercial?) Why do I have to feel his face where he doesn’t have a cute Elvis sideburn? “Because! I never get anything! Feel that beard!”
I do. His response: “Was that so hard? I never get anything. You get it all because you’re always the boss!” Explanation? None.

I’m still looking for the humor in this one.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Today's Question

"What are these for? They look totally clean and ready to wear." He stands at the bottom of the stairs holding two hangers with shirts.
"What?" me; I'm a little slow first thing on a Monday.
"What are these for? They were in the laundry room." He looks genuinely puzzled. Ah the confusing life of AzD. Just clean shirts that hadn't made it up to the bedroom closet but they become a puzzle.
I get it finally. I explain ... clean shirts for his closet.
"Oh, where do you want them?"

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Speaking of pills

Failure to see/ to recognize is an ongoing problem for the guy with AzD. This morning as I was working here at the computer, Bob came walking in, perplexed, "What is this little thing that was in my pill case?" (I'd already opened the lid on Thursday for him.) I looked at the "small hard white thing" as he described it.
Want to guess?
It was, of all things, a pill!!
Merry, merry!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Changes and stuff

You know, if you don't laugh you are indeed doomed. This morning went well with only small problems like Bob having two different colors of shoes on (although exactly the same kind of shoe:) and his shirt on backwards, a daily occurrence.
When I decided to begin recording these small descents into hell, I thought of all the tiny details of my daughters' lives which I am sure I've lost over time. We recorded their voices because a friend said, you think you'll remember but you won't. He was right and now I have those darling angel voices on tape. What of all this current journey will I certainly forget? And actually the question is which events will I want to remember.
Thinking back over changes I was remembering the sequence of inability to handle his own pills. He's gone over the course of maybe 15 months from being able to fill his own 7-day pill case, to not being able to figure out what goes where for when, to being able to count (Sunday / Monday / Tuesday...) and find the right day's potions after I tell him what day it is, to needing me to open the right lid so that we are sure he gets his pills.
So many changes. You just have to be water not rock.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Of Mice and Men

Today, I had to go to his world and help Bob understand that he was not going to be going to FP, adult day care, every day of the week -- which he'd really like to go. Last week we added Friday because I had to be at work all day since we had meetings in the afternoon. On the way home he commented that he'd told "them" that he was now coming every day. I thought I had straightened that out, but he gets things in his head. This morning we were talking about something and he said, "after I shave ..." and I corrected him, gently, and clarified that this is Tuesday and he is not going to FP. He reacted with .... "you said I'm going every day." Geeze!!! I was gentle and calm and we finally got it straightened out, but clearly he'd like to go every day.
Then as I was getting Christmas cards ready to mail, he came walking into the bedroom holding a dead mouse by the tail. "What do you suppose this is?"
"Yikes! It's a dead mouse; go throw it outside!"
He did but he is still not totally convinced it was real. "I think it was a toy; it was soooo soft."
Anybody remember Lenny in "Of Mice and Men"?

Monday, December 15, 2008

My Purpose

So, I've realized that so many things happen in the life of an Alzheimer's Disease caregiver and most of them are pathetically funny. If I don't record these events I will surely forget them :)
Let's go back a bit. Here are some items I've jotted down over the last year:

Bob’s concern about windmills during a hurricane. Yup! You read right. He is concerned that the new modern windmills could lose a blade and become a dangerous weapon. He especially worries about this happening in Louisiana.
He frets about why the Thursday trash / recycling schedule has changed. Why have the recyclers started coming in the afternoon. Every Thursday now he worries that our recycling hasn’t been picked up.
And on the subject of trash, I hand him a stack of paper to put in our paper recycling and he starts going through it asking, This? Are you sure about this? You don’t want this? (all of them are advertisements of various kinds).
How about standing in the middle of the kitchen while I’m cooking chicken and chopping vegetables, trying to get dinner ready. “Whatcha doing?” Then getting his feelings hurt if I gruffly shuffle him out of the damned way?
Then we have the dead carnations that were given to me as a May basket on the 1st. As late as May 18, Bob would not agree to throwing them out because they were still “so beautiful.” I sneaked them into the trash on May 20.
This year’s (2008) Christmas tree I call our Charley Brown tree. We brought in the plants a bit ago and two of them are dead. Bob decided that spraying the leaves was as good as the deep watering we used to do. I stripped all the dead leaves off the fig, trimmed the really brittle branches, and strung the lights. He told me to be careful not to harm the tree! It actually looks pretty cute:)

That's what this blog spot is going to be about.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


We are getting ready to leave for daycare and work this particular Wednesday morning. I was at the door talking with the carpenter who was doing some chores for me and Bob came bopping down the stairs ready to go.
I took one look and burst into laughter: he'd used my lipstick instead of the chapstick he was hoping for. He looked darling and all three of us had a good chuckle.
Here's for taking nothing too seriously :)