Hoarding Woes: Hide & Seek in the Maze

“Being Reasonable, Rational and Logical Will Just Get You into Trouble. When someone is acting in ways that don’t make sense, we tend to carefully explain the situation, calling on his or her sense of appropriateness to get compliance. However, the person with dementia doesn’t have a “boss” in his brain any longer, so he does not respond to our arguments, no matter how logical. Straightforward, simple sentences about what is going to happen are usually the best.”     CareGiver.Org   Read this link and remember!!

Not much new to report: family medical issues, work, life compete, as they normally will, with the day to day managing of my aunt’s care and wellness. Also, we have again lost momentum in dealing with wrapping up the remaining mess at my mom’s hoarding house and my aunt’s house.

Remember the undertaking to clean my aunt’s this early Summer? I can say in my heart it was genuinely driven to give her a chance in a safe environment. It was perhaps misguided given her limitations, as I perceived them then. It is the consensus now of medical and care providers that I would be negligent, now, to help her back into her home without 24 hours supervision. 

It is good to recall a small portion of my aunt's world at the time of her first accident. This was her world, all through, under and around the house. A truce was maintained to keep her happy and not rock the boat. Eventually, something had to give. SwittersB

In this region, the typical hourly rate of home care is $20.00. You can, as I have said before do the math and see that this adds up pretty darn quick over a month, even with you relieving to reduce the costs. You may feel compelled to aggressively maintain the mental connection with your loved one. I can tell you that it becomes an obligation that inserts itself into your daily life. Work, family, recreation are altered to allow for the visits. I can say I have some latitude with work and even then I am stretching the realistic allowances of my workplace and I have that luxury. Others most often do not have that freedom. Family and friends will often take a back seat. Recreation becomes a sin of sorts.

I know better of course. I listen, I read, I know that respite from such care and obligations is important for me. I need to go fly fishing or tie flies. I need to work in the garden more (my yard has never looked worse over the last two + years, nor enjoyed less; I can’t remember the last time I sat out on the deck and relaxed); vacations seem impossible right now with the almost daily drama (sister from the south coming up today to stir mierda up). None the less, escapes are necessary for everyone involved to renew, recharge, maintain balance in health and heart and deeper. 

Life is hard at times. We endure the challenges. We endure the second guessing and ‘what if’s’ or ‘what should I have done’s’. It is good to study up on this new development…dementia, just like I did for hoarding. Awareness, preparation, self care, a positive attitude are not just givens for many of us. We must use our coping skills to maintain our own mental health.

I have received an involved social worker that will maintain more frequent foster home visits to support the care givers and access my aunt’s progress. A home care nurse will visit weekly to assess med’s usage and combinations. The physical therapist will work around the neck and arm injuries to still work toward rehabilitating the knee. The arm injured, now puts a decided crimp in using the walker and makes my aunt even more vulnerable to any wanderings. All night, in the room, care is being provided to stop any wanderings and falls. Now it will be to see if a 94 y/0 knee, neck, forearm can heal while her mind copes with this game of hide and seek in a maze.

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