Husband's last camping trip

Husband's last camping trip

Monday, December 31, 2012

Another year

Oh boy.  Husband is getting a little scary in his scooter chair.  He has banged into walls and crashed into furniture.

Last night, I was sitting on the couch watching TV.  My couch is in the middle of the living room, separating the living room from the dining room.  I did not hear him come down the hallway, when, all of a sudden, there was this sudden jerk of the couch, followed by the couch being moved a little.  I didn't know what the heck was going on, until, around the corner of the couch I saw husband.  It scared me so much that I couldn't speak for a minute, then, I laid into husband.  I told him how much he scared me, to be careful, look where he is going.  Of course, he got mad and said, "Well, I don't know how to drive this thing anymore."

So, there it is.  He has forgotten how to operate his chair.  I don't know what I'm going to do when we move.  The apartment is small, not big like this house.  I surely don't want him banging into walls and making marks on the walls.  He certainly can't walk, even in that small apartment.  Guess I'll have to play it by ear.  Again.  Seems that's all I do anymore.

I woke up to snow this morning.  Good thing I'm not going anywhere today.  Want to have a quiet day today.

It's the end of 2012.  I can't say it's been a good year, nor a bad year.  Just another year.  I don't know what 2013 will bring.  I have not been working on my book.  Once we get moved and settled, I plan on doing just that.

So, for those of you who plan on having a celebration today, Happy New Year.


Sunday, December 30, 2012


There is something to be said for families facing a loved one's devastating illness.  My family has changed, but, has remained the same.  Does that make any sense?  Let me explain.

We still laugh.  But, we laugh different.  There's a sadness just underneath the surface.  There's a certain sadness in the air in my house, but, we still laugh.  There's a missing link in our family now.  So, we laugh and joke and cut up.  Beats the alternative.

I think this Christmas was the turning point in this disease.  The kids who were here saw it, Marie saw it Friday.  Wow, in less than a week, husband has completely lost a huge part of his memory.  Alzheimer's hit his delete button.

For some reason, it has not really affected me the way some people think it should.  I'm taking it all in stride. It's not depressing me, nor do I cry about it.  Honestly?  I have been preparing myself for this for 2 years. And I'm ready for it.

It's not easy, mind you.  Husband can get out of hand.  I have learned to not make such a big deal out of anything in front of husband.  If he becomes unruly, it's up to me how I handle the situation.  I've learned that ignoring him is the best way.  He will settle down and in five minutes (I'm not kidding), he is smiling again.  Forgetting all about his tantrum of a few minutes ago.

Another perk of this disease.

I am surprising even myself at how well I'm handling this.  It's not as devastating as I thought it would be.  Maybe because he is, most of the time, oblivious to the fact the he can't remember anything?  He smiles through it all.  Just smiles.  This is new to me.  He fought so hard against this disease, and now that it's taking over his brain, he has begun to smile.

Smiling is contagious you know.  So, when he smiles, I smile.

We are entering Stage 7 of this disease, the final stage.  Funny how one just knows.  It's OK, I say to myself.  You can do this, I say to myself.

Wait.  I am doing it!!

Saturday, December 29, 2012


Memory issues have really made it's presence known the last few days.  Husband has been pleasant, wheels around the house with a smile on his face, but, if you look in his eyes, "the look" is almost constant.

Husband called his dad yesterday.  I was changing the sheets on the bed and listened in on his conversation. He kept repeating himself.  Over and over.  He kept telling his dad about Jack and how much he likes military life.  Then, he would ask his dad about the weather, what he thought of this frigid cold, then, go right back to Jack, saying how much he likes military life.  By the time I got done with the bed and he was done talking, my heart was sinking.

Jason went to Wyoming for Christmas.  He called us on Christmas and husband spoke to him.  They had a good conversation.  The other day husband asked me where Jason was and why didn't he come to our house on Christmas.  I reminded him (Lesson #1, don't ever try to remind someone with Alzheimer's, it doesn't do any good) that he had spoken to him over the phone.  He looked at me as if I had lost my mind, then, said, "I did?  I don't remember."

I took Marie to run some errands yesterday.  I brought husband along.  When Marie got in the car, she gave husband a hug and we started on our way.  Husband turned to Marie sitting in the back seat and said, "So, how was your Christmas?  Did you guys have a good one?"  I glanced at her from my rear view mirror and saw the look on her face.  She looked as if she thought it was a joke, but, saw me looking at her.  Her little face fell, just for a moment.  She recovered and said, "Yes, daddy, we had a good Christmas.  I love you."  He said he loved her too, looked out the window with that smile on his face.

My poor Marie.  I think it's hit her just what is going on.  She was quiet the rest of the time.  She didn't say, "What?  We were at your house on Christmas, don't you remember?"  The kids all know now what not to say.  Now, if only I could learn that.

It's useless to say, "Don't you remember?,"  because they don't remember.

This has been hard adjusting to.  God has been good however, this perfect plan He has for us.  I am so busy getting organized for our move that, I don't have much time to dwell on the fact that I am loosing touch with husband.  He's really fading now.  But, only God knows what to do, so, He keeps me busy.  And I thank Him.

Husband has been smiling a lot lately.  Smiling, but, completely lost in his own world.  Could it be that the Angels are surrounding him and he feels the love of God?

I'd like to think so.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A noisy Christmas Day

Christmas morning started out rough, but, ended well.  Husband had been in a mood for a few days.

I decided to let him have his moment, then told him he could stay in the bedroom and be miserable, or, he could join the rest of the family once they got here and be a part of the family.  With that, I left him in the room and soon, he came out and was fine.

So, for the rest of the day, well, it was great.  I cooked, they all ate and swore I make the best stuffing, mashed potatoes and apple pies.  Husband ate well.

I didn't tell anyone he had had a bad morning.  I just went with the flow.  He laughed and I could tell he was enjoying himself.  "The look" was there all day, but, he did fine.  I heard a lot of "remember when..........", glanced at husband, and he would be nodding his head, which is a sign to me that he does not remember or understand what they are saying, but, being polite, he would nod his head.  He also laughed a lot.

So, Christmas 2012 was a success!  My husband was happy.  I laughed a lot too.  It was great to have family here.  This house is usually so quiet.  I sometimes miss the noise of family.  My heart was full.

OK, got the two major holidays out of the way.  Moving day, here we come.  Pat & Tyler will help and a family friend with the truck will help.  Not much to move, as I have gotten rid of so much.  It will be an adjustment, this small apartment, but, I'm more interested in the finance side of things.  Just have to be able to make it from month to month.

A new year is coming.  A new start.  I don't know what this year will bring.  My husband is fading away, but, I know deep in my heart that he will one day, be at peace.

Once all is said and done, I know I would have done the best I could do for him.  And, sometimes, doing all I can for husband now is good enough.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas 2012

Merry Christmas!

I sincerely hope your day is filled with family, friends and the hope we have in Jesus Christ.  Oh, and all the good food that comes along with it.

I am cooking today.  A smaller version of what I used to cook, but, cooking all the same.

Jack got his package.  He posted it on Facebook.

Christmas Eve services was really good.  Burt, Marie and the kids all came back here to eat Posole.  It was delicious.  I think the key to really good Posole is, I cook it for 3 days.  There is enough left over to freeze for at least two, if not three more meals for husband and I.

Husband has been in a strange mood for a few days now.  I don't know what he is thinking.  I can't read him.  He acts like he is resentful of everything around him.  Even me.  He makes sarcastic remarks to me.  I let them go.  I hope he will "behave" today.

Of course, I've gotten used to this roller coaster.  I am always waiting for the other shoe to drop.  I've said this before.  It's no way to live, folks.  I don't know what it's like anymore to have a "normal" day.

I want a normal, happy day today.  Just one day, Lord.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

You can do this, you can do this............................

Oh, the sights and smells of Christmas.  I thought for sure it would literally depress the heck out of me.  Surprise, it's not.  I'm just going with the flow.  When someone tells me have a happy holiday, I have been genuinely telling them to do the same.  This holiday season is not so bad after all.  Not that I walk around spreading Christmas cheer, but, when the young man at the cash register is so nice and talkative, I can't help but wish him a Merry Christmas.  So, OK, I think I can do this.

Husband has no Christmas spirit this year.  He has been down and depressed for a few days.  It's hard on me when he's this way, but, I have tried to get him to smile.  Maybe that's why I'm not so bah humbug?  Gotta keep his spirits up?  Could be.

He has not been sleeping well.  I find him sitting up in bed in the middle of the night.  Just sitting there, staring into the dark.  I tell him to lie back down.

He's been a little irritated at everything.  Including me.  He will try to test me.  See how much he can dish out.  Once I've had it, he retreats to the bedroom to sulk.  Ignoring him is the best way.  Just like a child.  I hate doing this, but, when you have a husband who has the mind of a 4 year old now, well, it worked for my other 4 year old children, so, it's been working for husband as well.

It's getting harder and harder now as we enter this final stage.  I'm holding on, not steady, but holding on just the same.  Preparing myself for the hell to come.  It's coming, just on the horizon, you can feel it in the air.  Reminds me of a big storm that is predicted.  You can see the clouds building up and you brace yourself.  You know it's going to hit, and there is nothing you can do to avoid it.

Tomorrow we will go to Christmas Eve services.  I started my homemade Posole yesterday.  It's a traditional New Mexico dish.  It's delicious.  You eat it on Christmas Eve.  Marie, Burt and the kids are going to church with us, then, come back here to eat Posole.  I am looking forward to that.  Kristen will be here too.

Jack called last night.  He asked me if I was making my Posole.  When I told him yes, he groaned.  He is homesick.  A lot of the guys went home for Christmas.  He said only a handful are there.  Said it's like a ghost town there now.  He has 2 weeks off from school.  I asked him if he got his package yet.  He said he will check today.

We talked for a long time.  He told me how much he has learned being in the military.  It was a good talk.  I still miss that boy.

There are no regular church services today.  Because our church is so large, they are having Christmas services today and tomorrow.  So, today I will pack up some stuff.  Get a little organized for our move.  Clean out some cupboards.  Take down shelves, pack up pictures.

So, for someone who has been dreading these holidays, it's not so bad.  All the pep talks I have been giving myself have paid off.

Yep, I can do this.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Ordinary people?

Thank you for your comments. And, yes, the fudge was Jack's idea. They always make me smile.   And a little humble.  You make me sound like a Saint.  Trust me, I'm no Saint.  There are times when I feel very sorry for myself.  And the "bad deal" that was handed to me.  I become someone I don't like.  I feel uncomfortable in my own skin when I get this way.  Lately, I have been able to recognize when this feeling is coming on.  And I try to avoid it like a head on collision.  Most of the time it works.  I get over it quickly.  Other times, not so quickly.

Like the tides of the ocean.

People amuse me and make me want to spit like a man at times.  Sometimes, when said people and I see each other, they will ask if husband has gotten better and gone back to work yet.  Yes, I'm serious.  I was actually asked that recently.  So, this is where the "I'm no Saint" comes into play.  The look on my face after they asked that stupid question gave them their answer.

We have a friend who was actually husband's friend in high school.  She is married with 4 kids.  I have always thought her to be a little kooky, but nice.  Her ideas and mine don't mesh well.  She will call often, asking how husband is doing.  A few months ago, she called.  As we were talking, she kept bringing up how we both are going through the same things.  I asked her what she meant by this.  She said, "Well, you know, our husband's are both dying.  We are in this together."  I got concerned and asked her was her husband OK?  What was wrong with her husband?  Very calmly and believing every word she was saying, said, "Oh well, B has Diabetes, so I know what you are going through."  It took me a moment to recover.  I didn't know if I should laugh or just tell her off.  She then proceeds to tell me that when he comes home from work (he's still working?, I'm thinking)  he's tired.  Yep, I got a real kook on my hands.  Last time she called, I saw her name on the caller ID and did not pick up the phone.

God really does have a sense of humor.  He puts these people in my life for a reason.  Maybe it's for a good laugh.  But I sometimes walk away or hang up the phone shaking my head.  Crazy, I mumble to myself.

Why someone would want to compare their situation with mine is beyond me.  Do they honestly think this is glamorous?  Are they jealous?  Of what?  Now, that's not normal.  Or, how ignorant one would think that husband has gotten over his "issues" and is back to work.  To me, that's just plain ignorant.

The tides of my life.  There are highs and lows.  I want to remember the highs and laugh at the lows.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Perfect Gift

The days seem to just blend into another.  Every day seems the same as the one before.  Nothing good happening, but, nothing really bad either.  I just want this month to be over with so I can get us moved, settled and for once, relax.

All this Christmas cheer is getting to me.  Reading emails and other posts about how wonderful someone's significant other is, surprising them with wonderful gifts, lavish, sentimental, meaningful acts from the love's of their lives.

The only gift I would ever ask for is for my husband to be well and not die.  To have my husband back.  To have "us" back.  To live a normal life.  Forget the trips.  Forget the new wedding ring.

Of course, we all know that is not going to happen.  So, I am left with what I have.

I am sounding negative, I can see where one would have that perception.  And, well, maybe I am, but, I've had enough of the holidays and just want to move on.

Husband has been fading in and out.  One minute he's perfectly fine, then, in the blink of an eye, he's off in his own world.  It can take hours and sometimes even whole days for him to come back.  He stares blankly at the TV, sometimes remembering what the weatherman said, sometimes not.  It's so very cold now, too cold for him to go out in his scooter chair.

He lives for phone calls.  Loves to talk on the phone.  Sometimes he remembers he spoke to that person, other times not.  I will have to remind him that he spoke to someone when he asks about them.  He will get a confused look on his face, look at me sideways and say, "I talked to him?  When?"

He knows it's Christmas time.  Doesn't know when Christmas is, but, knows it's that time of year.  He said he is looking forward to Christmas dinner and the stuffing I make that tastes just like my mom's.  And my homemade apple pies.

 All is not so sad and lonely.  His face lights up when I mention Christmas dinner.  He remembers my famous stuffing.  And, those apple pies.

So you see, all is not lost.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Day of Silence

Today I will honor all those lost at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Just existing

We have had a somewhat low key past couple of days.  Father in law and Lupe came over Thursday with a Christmas Basket for us.  There was a ham, fresh apples, oranges and bananas.  Lupe bought me some Christmas towels for the kitchen.  FIL also brought more wood.  What a nice surprise.

Husband is doing OK.  Asks a lot of questions about our move.  Memory issues are constant now.  Will forget what I just told him in an instant.  He was telling me he had taken a cough drop because he was coughing.  Only, he forgot drop.  Was stumbling over the word "cough", but could not remember that drop followed cough.  I have to constantly fill in where he leaves off now.  I do it like it's a normal thing to do, not make a big deal about it.  It's second nature to me now.

It's so very cold outside so we have been staying inside.  I do have to go to the post office today to mail Jack's fudge.  I made it yesterday along with homemade banana muffins.  He called last night and is excited to get his package.  I still miss him.

I have been looking online for recliners.  I have found some at K-Mart, reasonable priced.  Only, the sale goes off today.  There's always after Christmas sales.

Not a lot going on in our household.  Days are blending into another.  Surviving.  Lonely at times.  Sad at times.  I have been using the fireplace every afternoon, into the night.  It's so cold.

Isn't it just like my life now.  Keeping the home fires burning.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Shooting at school

My heart is heavy today.

Makes you wonder just what this world is coming to.  I am so glad I have no more young ones in school.

You can't go to the movies.  You can't go to the mall.  It's dangerous in the workplace.

Now, it's a risk to send your children to school?

My God.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A quick post

I've been trying to get on here and post but, well, life has gotten in the way, so, here I am 2 days later.

I have started to get ready for our move.  No Christmas lights, tree or anything related to Christmas around my house this year.  It's a little difficult for me to drive down my street and see all the lights and beautiful decorated Christmas trees in neighbor's windows, then, I drive up to my sad, dark looking house and get a twinge in my chest.  But, then I think about the new apartment and how my finances will improve and the sadness goes away.  Like I've said before:  I'm in survival mode.

Husband has been OK.  A little lost at times throughout the day.  Not really with it, but, not really gone either.  He keeps asking me when are we moving.  I tell him, many times per day.  He knows it's the Christmas season, but, doesn't know when Christmas actually is.

Tyler & Susie bought new living room furniture and Tyler told me to go look at what they have in recliners.  I'm going to surprise husband and take him this morning.  It's a real chore taking him anywhere, but, it'll get him out of the house and I do want to see what they have.  It has to be reasonable in price.

I'm making homemade fudge and sending Jack a care package.  Have to get that done as well.

So, life is continuing on.  Many changes, many challenges.  I've been having good days and bad days.  I have to keep going.  There is light at the end of the tunnel.

I just have to get there.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Hurry January

We had a quiet weekend.  The arctic cold air promised on Friday night hit with full force.  It was 8 degrees this morning.  Bitter, bitter cold.

Father in law came over Saturday to get husband's tools to store for us.  We will have no room in the apartment.  He brought us some firewood.  I burned it all yesterday.  A nice, steady fire all day and into last night.  the only thing I will miss will be the fireplace.

I dreaded calling my landlord and giving him my notice to move.  At first he was not happy, but, as we talked he said he completely understood, knew that I was going through a very hard time and said he understood.  I offered to show the house.  He was grateful for that.  I hope it rents out quickly as he is one heck of a nice guy.

He has offered to buy my washer/dryer, stove & fridge.  One fell swoop!!   Yay.  We cut a deal.  He said he would be by today.  I hope he does buy all, that way I don't have to mess with appliances when we move.

Husband has been hard to handle this weekend.  It all started Friday night when he called me into the bedroom.  He was very upset.  He had an accident and wet his pants.  He told me a little girl was in the bathroom and taking too long and he couldn't hold it, so, he wet his pants.  I got out clean underwear for him, a clean towel, he took a shower and got into bed.  Later, it hit me.  A little girl in our bathroom?  Who was that?  Delusional?  Probably.

Difficult on Saturday with husband.  He forgot he took a shower Friday night, took another one Saturday morning.  Forgot he took one in the morning, took another that afternoon.  Took another one Saturday night.  Took one last night and is in the shower right now.  Oh well, he's clean.

I've noticed memory lapses more pronounced this weekend.  Talk on the phone with someone, tell him about it, then the next few minutes he would ask me if I had heard from so and so.  The same person I had just gotten off the phone with.  Exhausting for me.

I heard him talking in the bedroom yesterday afternoon.  A few short sentences, then, it was silent.  I don't know if he had "visitors" or what, but, he was speaking to "someone".  Went in the bedroom, he was watching TV.  He smiled at me and asked what was for dinner.

There are days and then there are days.  It's one big question mark all day, every day.  Once we get moved, Home Health Care will come 2-3 days per week.  It is then I will escape, go to Starbucks, have an espresso, window shop, talk to people who remember what I just said.  I will breathe fresh air.  I will be able to relax, somewhat.  I will try to act like normal people act.  I will be free, for a few hours each week.  Free!!

Oh yes, not only is this move a smart financial one,  it's also a good move for me.  I will be able to feel like a real person again.  Go where I want, do what I want.

And to think, all I have to do is, get through this month!!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Phone Home

Jack called last night.  He is thriving.  He sounds so good.  He has grown up so much.  He is loving school.  Said it was so interesting.  He has made so many friends.  He has met people from all over.

He talked with husband for a few minutes.   I heard husband tell him about his Dr appointment.  He told Jack the Dr said he was improving.  ???????????  Oh well, Jack went along with it.  I went along with it.

After husband handed me the phone back, he went back to the bedroom.  I talked with Jack for another 30 minutes or so.  Jack told me he has already had an exam.  Said he got a 90%.  Pretty proud of himself.  We talked about Christmas.  We talked about us moving.  It was a great conversation.

When I got off the phone, husband came out of the bedroom in his wheelchair.  I proudly told him that Jack had gotten a 90% on his first exam.

Husband had "the look", looked at me confused and said, "Oh, did you talk to Jack or did he text you?"  Not 30 minutes and he had already forgotten he had just talked with Jack.

Ah yes, Alzheimer's has a way of ruining everything.  Right down to a wonderful phone call from Jack.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Packing & Purging

Today is the day I will start to pack.  Again.  I am going to purge.  Everything.  With the exception of our bed, 2 dressers, 2 TV's, 1 TV stand and some personal stuff, that's all I'm taking.  Pots & pans, of course they will go with me.  Pictures, yes.

I am selling all of our major appliances, and 1 rather new queen bed.  With those proceeds, I plan on buying 2 recliners for the living room.  The rest I will be donating.  All of it.  Gone.

Is going to feel good not to have so much stuff.  I do not like clutter.  I like to live simple.  Our new apartment is small.  Really small.  At this point in my life, all I'm concerned with is making it financially each month, not having a big house.  Moving into this apartment will allow me to do so.  So, so relieved and grateful.

Let the packing and purging begin!!

Husband has been so so.  He is looking forward to moving and being able to "walk" the grounds of the new place.  It's handicapped friendly, he can watch the ducks in the duck pond and stroll the grounds.

Forget the ducks and the duck pond, I will find that hot tub!

In answer to your questions on the stages of Alzheimer's.  There are 7 stages.  As Dr A and I discussed, he is at stage 6, with signs of stage 7 creeping in and out.  Stage 7 can last a long time, or not.  We just don't know.  Everyone is different.

Dr A did ask me if husband was having delusions.  Yes, I told him.  He then asked me what time of day did these occur.  I told him after dark.  He nodded his head and said, "It's the beginning."  Stage 7.

Last night, as I was going to bed, husband had fallen asleep with his glasses on.  As I was taking them off of him, he opened his eyes and started telling me about pictures.  I have learned to not say, "what pictures?  What are you talking about?"  His speech was slurred, but, he was believing what he was saying.  I smiled, nodded my head and told him to go back to sleep, I would take care of the pictures (?) in the morning.  He smiled back and promptly fell back asleep.

Husband did tell Dr A that his mother & uncle "visit" him often.  Oh, the look on Dr A's face.  His face looked so sad, yet, he smiled and said, "Oh good.  Glad to see that you are having visitors."  I have never actually "seen" the "visitors".  But, when this happens, I feel something.  A presence.

Yep, I feel em'.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Hear ye, Hear ye

Sorry for the delay in updates.  I have been so busy, by the time I think about posting, it's 7 PM.

Dr's appointment:  Actually, it went well.  Dr was mostly concerned about weight loss.  Husband took the usual tests, with Dr adding some he had never done before.  Of course husband did not pass, but, I could see that his memory is still somewhat intact.  Dr said there has been a decline, but, not too frightening.  It's to be expected.

Dr asked me if I was still working, said he couldn't remember if I had quit.  I told him I was at home with husband.  Said it was a good thing, because, husband is not to be left alone anymore.  With the exception of running to the store, in this stage, it would be too dangerous to leave him alone.  I asked him what stage, he said he feels it's stage 6, with stage 7 peeking it's head around the corner.  Told me husband was a fighter.

I felt good about our appointment.  Husband did very well and did not pad the truth like he has done before. He seemed relaxed around Dr A.

When we were discussing memory issues, husband told the Dr that he held on for Jack's sake, but, he said, since Jack left, he has noticed that he doesn't fight it anymore.  Dr nodded his head and told husband to let nature take it's course.

He goes back in 6 months.  I was told to not let him go for "walks" in his scooter chair alone anymore.  He said confusion could set in and husband could wander and get lost.  Being that we live close to a heavily traffic area, well, you get the picture.

In other news, we got approved for our apartment.  We move January 12th.  I am relieved to say the least.  Boy, trying to get in an apartment is almost like trying to buy a home nowadays.  Credit check, background check, you name it, they do it.  Luckily, I don't have bad credit, am not a convicted felon and have never been evicted.

The apartment comes with stove & fridge, so, I will sell mine.  I need to get enough money so I can buy the 2 recliners for the living room.

Husband and I are both looking forward to this move.  It won't be a hard move, as this apt is small, with only 1 bedroom and 1 bathroom.  I am donating so much stuff, it'll make this move quite simple.

All I want is husband comfortable, not stressing about bills, enough money to live on.  In this apartment, that will be made possible.

Oh, on the brochure I got, it gives the layout of the whole complex.  It says there are two outdoor hot tubs.  First night we are there I'm on a quest to find that!!!  Oh, just imagine that, me, in a hot tub, relaxing.  Why, I won't know what to do with myself in a relaxed state of mind.  Been so long.

Now that, as Martha Stewart would say, is a good thing!!

Monday, December 3, 2012


We see Dr A this morning.  Husband does not like going to see the Dr.  Can't blame him.  Every time he goes, Dr A gives him little tests, making husband uncomfortable.  He can't "pass" these little tests.

If I get a chance, I will ask Dr what stage are we in.  I have to know.

After the Dr's appointment, I take our application up to the new apartments.  I will know if we are approved some time this afternoon.  Pray!!

Yesterday, after church, as I was lifting the wheelchair back into the car, I got the bright idea to put it in the way Kristen does.  It fits better when she does it.  So, I lifted it up fast and the handles of the wheelchair came in contact with my mouth.  It hit so hard, it knocked me silly for a minute.  For a moment, I thought it had knocked a tooth loose.  That hurt.

I put my hands over my mouth and let out a small cry.  Husband heard me, asked what the matter was.  I told him.  He turned around to see me and got mad at me.  Said he would put the wheelchair in the car from now on. Really?

As I was lifting the wheelchair into the car, while my mouth was throbbing, husband was giving me a lecture. I had 3 seconds to wonder what would everyone think if I just walked away.  Away from this nightmare.  All of this.

I know why husband got mad.  He gets scared when I get sick or hurt because if something happens to me, who will take care of him?  It scares him.  But, he can't express that anymore, so, he shows his fear by getting angry.  I know that.  I get it.

As I got into the car, I felt like a little girl again, wanting to run to her mommy and have her make it all better.

Got home, put my big girl pants on and went about the afternoon.

Just another day in "Paradise".

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Then & now

Yesterday was one of those days that tested me beyond my limitations.

Husband woke up in one of the most confused states I have ever seen.  His speech was slurred, he asked the same questions so many times, that, by evening, I was a complete mess.  I was so glad to see him finally asleep.  It was a pure test of my patience for sure.

In the middle of the night I woke up to hear him chuckling and talking to one of his" visitors."  That is one of the strangest things.  It's so quiet, that middle of the night, and to hear your husband talking with someone(?)  makes it even all the more strange.

This morning seems no different.  I happened to walk in the bedroom to see him getting into his medication, a pill he takes only at night.  He said he forgot to take it last night and was going to take it this morning.  I took the bottle away from him and told him it's only for nighttime.  Of course, he thought I was just being mean to him.  I have to find a safe place for his medication now.

When does this nightmare end?

And to think this is going to get worse?

His visit with Dr A is Monday morning.  I'm sure he will not be surprised at this drastic change in husband.

In June, I had to renew my drivers license.  Yesterday, as I was going through my wallet, I found my old drivers license from just 4 years ago.  The picture that stared back at me was a smiling, seemingly happy woman.  My hair was very long at the time, it was pulled up in a fashionably bun, my eyes were even smiling.  I pulled out my current license and compared the two.  This new license picture shows a woman, no smiles, short hair now, with a look of sheer pain on her face.  The woman looking back at me tells a story.  She looks so tired.  You can see pain on her face.  She looks so sad.  Her poor face is worn.

That woman is me now.

I sat down and cried.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

I'm OK, You're OK

December is almost here.  And Christmas.  Two weeks after Christmas, we move.  I look around this house and think about what's involved in this move and I want to curl up in bed and wake up two months from now.

Husband told me he would do all the work.  Purely delusional.  When he offers to help me with anything, I have to be careful how I respond.  I have learned to not say, "You can't do anything."  Even though he can't do anything.  So, I give him a sit down job and soon, he forgets he even offered in the first place.  Another perk of this disease.

I think I'm going to try and sell the washer/dryer on Craig's list this weekend.  I have never done Craig's List, but, if it gets them sold I'll do it.  There is a huge, clean laundromat a short 1/2 block away, so, that won't be too much for me to handle.  Besides, with Jack gone, I am now down to only 4 loads each week.

I have decided to not have a garage sale.  It's December, people are not going to be out much at garage sales.  Besides, it's cold outside.  With the exception of my major appliances and a queen bed, the rest will be donated.  Get it out, less for me to move.

It's going to be a change for sure.  Being so far from the familiar.  I like the idea of mountain views, only, during snowstorms, that part of the city gets slammed with snow and ice.  Oh well, make sure we have plenty of food and wait for it all to thaw.

So much to do, so much on my mind.

I still can't shake this sadness, however, I try each day to work through it.  It's seems to be a part of my daily.  I think part of it is my grief.  There are times a little anger will slip in here and there.  I read somewhere that it's healthy to feel sadness and anger.

Because my life is not normal anymore, it's comforting to read that the feelings I have sometimes are normal.  Sort of reassurance that I'm OK.

Believe me, on bad days, I really wonder about me.  How can anyone go through this and come out OK?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Keeping the Faith

Hard day yesterday.  Husband wanted to go for a walk in his scooter chair.  I let him go alone.  He was gone for about 1 1/2 hours.  I got worried, and found him at the park talking to our groundskeeper and one of our neighbors.  I talked with our groundskeeper and he told me that husband can come out anytime he wants, Robert (groundskeeper) is always there and said he would look out for husband.  Nice man.

When I saw husband talking, it kind of warmed my heart.  There he was, in his chair, talking with such animation.  He was in his element.  I couldn't hear what he was saying, but, it looked to me as if he was enjoying himself.  I asked Robert what they were talking about, he shrugged his shoulders and said, "I can't keep up with him.  He goes from one subject to another."  But, both men listened to him, acting like nothing is wrong with husband, amusing him.  Husband seemed in better spirits in the afternoon.

My morning was stressful with husband.  He was going in and out of reality, telling me that he wanted to move right away, asking me impossible questions about our new apartment, getting frustrated when I didn't have the answers, attempting to walk without his wheelchair, getting angry at me when I told him to get in his chair.  I was ready for "The Cocktail Hour" by 10:00 AM.  Whew.

Ever since his fall in early October, he still cannot lift his right arm up past his chest.  We see Dr A next week.  I will ask him to check it out.

This past week, God has been tapping me on the shoulder, reminding me He is still there, watching over us.  I have cried out to God several days in a row, and He's still there.  It's these little reminders from Him that keeps me going.  It's been hard for me to keep my faith when husband does what he does.  And then, out of the blue, He taps me on the shoulder.  He tells me it's going to be OK.  No, my husband is going to die, but, God is ever faithful, letting me know that He wants husband with Him.

I have to be OK with that.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Survivor Mode

It's been a busy few days.  I had to make another decision.  Hasn't been easy, considering the work involved, but, after being sick and having time to really look at my finances, I made a decision to give up this house and move into a small 1 bedroom apartment.  Yes, we will be moving, again.

The thought of moving makes me want to cringe, but, it's in our best interest, not only easier for me to clean, but financially, well, it makes so much sense.  Kind of like, "well, slap me up side of my face", kind of sense. The amount of money saved will enable me to actually buy food and not have to scrimp in that department.

I found an apartment on the other side of the city.  Quite a commute, but, it's in the foothills, beautiful grounds, quiet community and close to shopping.  The grounds feature a huge pond with ducks, turtles and fish.  In the middle of this pond is a water feature.  My new living room window looks out on that pond and water feature along with a stunning mountain view.  Marie lives up in that area, so, she is thrilled we will be close.

We will be moving January 10th.  I have to give my notice here and I am not looking forward to that.  My landlord is a great guy, but, he knows my struggle.  I have never not paid my rent, but, he knows of husband's condition and is a really nice man.  Just hope he can be understanding.

The apartment is small, but the amount of closets and cupboards is good.  I am going to sell all my major appliances and buy two recliners for the living room.  Talk about downsizing.  If I do that, the move will consist of our bedroom stuff, two recliners, two TV's, our clothes, some pictures, dishes and misc items.  Done.

Last night, after husband fell asleep, I started doing the math.  Once I was done, I got excited.  I will actually be able to shop at Trader Joe's again.  Buy food as we need it, not like now, when I have the money.  I won't have a ton of money, but, it will be enough to survive.  Not like it is now.  I am so tired of being financially drowning in bills.  Not being able to buy a whole lot of food.  I have a constant stomach ache.  Stress.  No more.

So, after living here for only 9 months, here we go again.  Only this time I'm only moving 1/3 of the stuff I have.  Can you say, Garage Sale?  Hello.

I hate having to make all the decisions.  I don't have a husband that can offer me advice.  He just nods his head, agrees with whatever I say and closes his eyes.  It's all up to me.  I hate making these grown up decisions alone.  But, hey, someone has to do it.

Right now, all I'm concerned with is taking care of us.  I have no one to lean on.  It's all me.  I'm also in a new place in my life.

It's called, Survival Mode!!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Post Thanksgiving

Well, thanksgiving was nice.  Different, but, nice.

Tyler & Susie cooked a delicious dinner.  Susie's mom, sister and brother came as well.  I enjoy her little sister.  She is so cute and funny.  Her little brother is mildly Autistic, but, has come out of his shell somewhat and communicates with others better.  Her mom?  While she is sweet, she is rather strange and a little odd.  But, I did enjoy our special dinner.  Like I say, it was nice, but, different.

Jack called Thanksgiving morning.  He was lonely and missing his family.  He told me that he felt homesick for us, that it didn't really feel like Thanksgiving at all.  Then he said, "I really miss you mom."  That almost did me in, but, I played it out well.  Once we got off the phone, I felt so very sad.  Sad for a lot of reasons, but, sad just the same.

I asked him if he wanted to talk to his dad.  He hesitated, then said, "Not really.  Mom, he doesn't understand anything I say anymore.  I don't like talking to him.  And that makes me sad, that I don't even want to talk to my dad."  I sat there for a minute and thought back to Thanksgivings past.  How it had come to this.  My son now doesn't want to talk to his dad anymore, because his dad can't communicate well anymore.  What a crappy feeling.

Husband has been OK.  Fades in and out of reality, but attitude has been OK.  No anger issues to speak of.  A lot of confusion.  Asks me throughout the day what day it is, what time it is, what's the date, when is Christmas, when are we going someplace, and on and on.  I answer many times the same questions.  By evening, I am tired of the questions.  I always breathe a sigh of relief when I know he has fallen asleep.

When I woke up yesterday morning, I said to myself, "One holiday down, one to go.  Bring it on."  Hurry Christmas, come and go.

I used to love the holidays.  Smelling the good food cooking, looking at my children's excited faces at the wonder that is Christmas, family gatherings.  Now?  The children are grown, my husband is dying, and the delicious food cooking?  Not so much.

We see Dr A in two weeks.  There, I will arrange for Home Health Care to come in and see about husband.  I will get some freedom and a break from the daily grind that has become my life.  I sure need it.  I know Dr
A will see a change in husband.  Maybe then he can tell me how much longer.   You just never know with Alzheimer's.  Especially his type of Alzheimer's.

Today we are going to a birthday party.  We are actually getting out of the house.  It'll be fun.  I certainly am looking forward to it.  Husband is too, in his own confused way.  He has probably forgotten we are going.  I have to remind him again.   He'll look at me when I tell him and most likely will say, "Oh, really?  I didn't know we were going.  You didn't tell me about the party."

I will sigh, and say, "Oh, maybe I forgot to tell you."  He will nod his head and agree that I did indeed forget to tell him.

Yep, it's like that here.  Day in.  Day out.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to all.  I hope your day is filled with the wonder of the many blessings He has bestowed upon you.

I made a decision to have a blessed day.  I am looking forward to being together this afternoon with Tyler & Susie.  Eating all the good food they will be preparing with love.  They stopped by yesterday to get a roasting pan.  You could see in Tyler's eyes how much he wanted to do this.

I am missing Jack today.  Our first ever without him.  He's my youngest, my baby.  At least we can talk on the phone when we want now.

I kept thinking to last Thanksgiving.  I really thought it would be husband's last.  Well, here we are, he's still here.  Even though he's not in the here and now pretty much, he's still physically here, so, I have to be thankful for that.

I am thankful for my children.  Oh, how I love them.

I am thankful that my mother is still here.  My brothers and sisters.

Yes, even though my life has become one sad situation after another, I dug deep and found some thankfulness.

So, today, I am thankful.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


My little dog woke me up early today.  Earlier than usual that is.  He had to go potty.  So, I've been up for over an hour now.  It's so quiet in the house.  My dog is back asleep.  I'm wide awake now, thanks alot doggie.

A very quiet day yesterday.  Husband has been so-so.  Some minutes are better than others.  Yes, you heard me.  Minutes.  He can be "with it" one minute, then, the next minute, will go into his own world.  Next thing you know, he's back, knowing where he is and what he was doing.  I am easing into this phase, going with the flow.

I'm still sad, but, Jack called last night, so, that made me feel brighter.  He called on Sunday, giving me his new cell number.  I was so glad to hear from him.  He sounded lonely, but, we had a great talk.  He also got sick, sounds awful with a cold.  I told him to see a Dr, but he said he would be fine.  He went from San Antonio where it is balmy, to Wichita Falls, TX, where it is cold.

He said he really likes Sheppard AFB.  Said it is more like college than anything else.  Well, he's comparing it to Basic Training, anything is better than basic in my book.  Jack said the food is really good too.  He has a roommate, but, because this roommate has been there longer, he has more freedom than Jack at this point.  One of his good buddies from basic is there as well, just not in his squadron.  They are planning on doing something for Thanksgiving.  Jack starts his classes on Monday.

Other than that, not much else to post about.  There isn't much to do around here.  House is clean, no laundry to speak of.  No preparing a big turkey for tomorrow.  No baking.

Tomorrow we will have a nice dinner at Tyler's.  It will be different, but, nice just the same.  Tyler is coming today to borrow some pans for the big dinner.  Those two.  So cute.  He said yesterday, "Mom, we don't have the kind of pans for cooking all this food.  Can we borrow your roasting pans and baking dishes?"  I did have a laugh over that.

While my heart isn't exactly overflowing today, it is better than yesterday.  I will take husband tomorrow and we will have a delicious dinner, be with family and I'll try to find something to be thankful for.  You know what?  With my acting skills, I betcha I will find something to be thankful for.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Snap out of it!!

I am so sorry for the delay.  Getting over this whatever I've had has been hard.  I'm also very sad.  I can't pinpoint on why, just am.

Traveling with husband was hard.  Because I am with him 24/7, I don't realize how far he has gone down until someone else points it out, or, when traveling, people will talk to him and he has no idea what they are saying.

After having such a wonderful time in San Antonio, I came home to stark reality.  Could be where all this sadness is coming from.

I did some grocery shopping on Friday.  People were shopping for their holiday dinner, laughing, filling their carts up with delicious food, listening to them plan on who was cooking what.  I looked at my cart, a pitiful amount of food, with no trace of any holiday food.  And it made me want to run out of the store.

Tyler is cooking us Thanksgiving dinner.  He and Susie are excited to have us over in their new home, for a special dinner.  I have to force myself to act excited about it all.  I don't want to disappoint him or Susie.

Bear with me as I work through this.

I am frustrated also with my computer.  I downloaded the pics from Jack's graduation, but, for some reason, they will not post here.  I don't know what I'm doing wrong.  I want to share with you all, maybe Tyler knows something I don't.  Frustrating!!

Here's hoping I can get through this holiday with some sort of gladness in my heart.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Air Force Graduation Part 2

Am feeling a little better this morning.  Not quite up there, but, feeling better.  Now, Part 2.

While we were waiting for the Coin Ceremony to begin, there, in the handicap section was a couple with a handicapped child.  His name was Brandon.  He looked to be about 12-13 yrs old.  You could tell he was severely handicapped as he was in a special stroller.  His dad told me he was epileptic along with other special needs.  They didn't go into it, I didn't ask.  He was excited to see his big brother that day.  When big brother had left for basic training, the airport allowed Brandon to go to the gate and watch his brother's plane take off.

As I watched this mother and father dote on their child, it touched my heart so.  The mother would lay her cheek next to her child's cheek.  Oh, you could see the love she had for her child.  Every once in awhile, I would look over at husband.  He would be looking around, somewhat confused as to what was going on, and, knowing all he wanted to do was see Jack.  I got a lump in my throat, thinking how excited he too was, only to see his son.

Once we were reunited with Jack, we were told the Airmen had base liberty until 7 PM.  We had the whole day to spend with Jack.

A few hours later, I was sitting outside one of the BX's, while Jack took his dad inside the BX.  There were so many families walking with their Airmen, mother's, father's, sisters, brothers, wives and children.  And who did I see?  Big brother pushing Brandon's stroller.  The look on big brother's face told me just how much he loved his little brother.  Brandon was wide awake, looking around, with a glow.  He had his big brother back.  Mom and dad looked so proud of both of their boys.  They were a family united.  Oh, how that touched my heart.  Tears ran down my face as I watched them.  What love.  What devotion to one another.

Now, the Jack I knew used to complain he had to throw the trash out.  It meant involving him walking.  Add a dose of Air Force Basic Training and the boy has been transformed.  He walks everywhere now.  Just about killed me off the first day.  Because I didn't rent a car, I knew we would have to depend on public transportation and our shuttle guy.  Also, that first day Jack was not allowed to leave the base.

We walked, and walked and walked.  Finally, I sat down and said, "Ok, I have to sit down."  Jack said, "Mom, come on, you see that big bridge over there?"  I looked, about 3 blocks away was one of the big overpasses on the base, a big bridge.  I said, "Yes, I see it."  "Well, we are going to go over that."  I looked at him and with a firm set of my jaw, said, "Oh no we aren't."  He started laughing, saying I couldn't handle it.  I agreed with him, told him wouldn't it be nice to sit awhile?  So, we compromised.  He took his dad to the mini-mall and I sat down and put my feet up.

What was really sweet of Jack was, once we were together, he told me he would push his dad.  Told me he was giving me a break for 3 whole days.  And, push he did.  He was tender with his dad.

Then it was time to leave.  On the shuttle the other families and I were talking about our day with our Airmen.  I told them how my son walks every where now, and we all laughed at the big changes in our Airmen.  We all had such a bond.  It was a special moment, all these strangers from all over the country, sharing this common bond.

Back at the hotel, husband took his shower, I took a hot, hot shower, we had dinner and relaxed.  Oh, my feet hurt, my back ached, but, I was happy.  We went to bed at 8:30!!

Next up, the Parade on Friday morning.  What a beautiful ceremony with all the Airmen dressed in the Blues.

Pictures are forthcoming, I promise.  Pat has to help me, I don't want to screw it up.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Air Force Graduation Part 1

Sorry for the delay.  I got sick Monday afternoon.  Really sick.  Am still in bed, hopefully I will be feeling better soon.  I think I caught the travel bug.  What a bug it is.

OK, we left last Wednesday morning and flew to Dallas.  Before we landed in Dallas, the flight attendant was announcing connecting gates for people continuing on.  She said we were going into terminal D, and our connecting gate was terminal C.  A lady on the plane heard me saying to husband that I hoped I could get us there in time.  This lady leaned over and told me not to worry, she would get us a driver for the handicapped who would take us to the next terminal.

This driver was hilarious.  He would honk his horn and in a real southern drawl, yell out, "Comin' through, comin' through, move."  Once we arrived at terminal C, I found out our plane was delayed by about 30 minutes.  I had a reservation for this shuttle service to take us from the airport in San Antonio to our hotel, so, I tried calling him to let him know our plane would be delayed a little.  No phone service.

Once we took off, 30 minutes late, I was worried, but, thought that if he came into the airport, he would see that our flight had been delayed.

The airline we flew on was American Airlines.  They were wonderful.  An attendant would wheel husband to the door of the plane, and husband would walk to his seat, with my assistance.  Once we would land, that would be the first thing waiting for us at the door again.

So, this attendant in San Antonio was so neat.  He was young, and wheeled us outside and stayed with us until our shuttle came.

Our shuttle driver was great, handling the wheelchair and all.  He took us straight to our hotel.  Our hotel was about 1/2 mile from the base.  In fact, you could see the base from the hotel.  I kept thinking, "Jack is right over there, somewhere."

I got us settled in our room and we had dinner delivered to us.

The next morning, we were up bright and early.  Our shuttle guy arrived.  There were a number of people waiting for the shuttle as well.  Guess this was the hotel to stay at, with it being so close to the base.  We rode the second trip in and arrived around 7 am.

Once I got familiar with the happenings, I took husband to the street where they were having the Airmen's Run.  It's a traditional thing, going back many years.  There were so many people lined up, but, because husband is in a wheelchair, we were able to sit up front.

Families had banners, congratulating their graduate, people wore T-shirts, with their Airmen's name on it.  Of course, I didn't do any of that, I didn't even know to do that.  Luckily, a lot of people around me didn't do that either.

The Airmen's Run started.  They ran down this street, chanting, each squadron a different color, turned around, and ran back down.  Once I figured out that the flag the head person was carrying was their actual squadron, I found Jack's, but, could not see him.

Next up was briefing.  When that was over, we went out to some bleachers for the Coin Ceremony.  That was really neat, as there were 3 young people who were becoming american citizens.  And then, the graduates started marching in.  I knew my son was somewhere, and as the announcer said each squadron, I knew which one Jack was in.  Try finding your child in a sea of young men.  They all looked alike to me.

I got tears in my eyes as the ceremony continued on.  Then, after the handing out of the Coins and the announcer saying they were no longer Trainees, but Airmen, we were allowed to go out to find him.  The Airmen had to stand at attention until a family member tapped him on the shoulder.  I could not find Jack.  I was getting frustrated, as they all looked so much alike.  Finally, I saw two Airmen talking and asked them if they could help me locate Jack.  I gave them his name, (they no longer go by their first names, I found out), and said, "Lucero?  He's right over there, Ma'am."

I turned and saw my son.  He was standing at attention, looking a little scared and sad.  So many Airmen had been tapped, and there he was, looking so alone.  I went up to him, tapped him, he turned around, his face, oh that face, just lit up.  He said, voice breaking, "Mom!!"

He grabbed me and hugged me so hard, my rib cage hurt.  He would not let go of me.  I said, "Did you think I wasn't coming?"  He said, "No, you said you were coming, but, yeah, I was getting worried waiting for you to tap me."  I looked at this child of mine and saw he had tears in his eyes.

Part Two coming tomorrow.  Sorry for the delay in pictures, I don't know how to get them on this blog.  Am trying to figure it out.      

Monday, November 12, 2012

Tears, Pride and cancelled flights!!

To say our trip to San Antonio was wonderful would be an understatement.  My son, an Airman now, made me cry.  How gentle and patient he was with his dad.  How he pushed husband around everywhere for 3 days, with not one complaint.  The look on his face when he saw the damage that's being done to husband in the last 8 1/2 weeks.  Our goodbye Saturday night was bittersweet.  I cried, Jack cried.  Husband was in his own world by then.  Lost.

How yesterday, flying out of San Antonio with mixed feelings.  How arriving in Dallas to catch our next plane to Albuquerque, only to find out our flight had been cancelled!!  So, there I was, with husband, who by this time was a complete mess, stranded in Dallas for 8 hours!  Oh, yes, that was fun.

We arrived home last night at 11:00 PM.  Needless to say, I am exhausted, and will post pics by this afternoon.

All in all, with being stranded in Dallas, with seeing my son graduate, experiencing difficulty with husband, it was well worth it.

As tired as I am this morning, my heart is full.

Monday, November 5, 2012


Not much going on.  Went to church yesterday morning, came home and that was about it.  Husband is OK.  Confused most of the time now, but, OK.  I've gotten used to him being constantly confused, so, to me,   it's just the way it is nowadays.

Taking husband to FIL's house this morning.  He wants to visit before we leave.

I usually call my mother every Sunday afternoon, but, she beat me to it yesterday.  She was surprised that I was taking husband with me to San Antonio.  I told her I had no other choice, besides,  I could never leave him home and go to Jack's graduation without him.  She understood, but said, "Oh, honey.  That's going to be so hard on you."  Uh, yeah, it will be, but, it's his son too.

I am trying to figure out how I am supposed to carry luggage and push a wheelchair at the airport.  I may have to get a Sky Cab.  Husband has trouble pushing himself in the wheelchair because of that bad fall he took some weeks ago.  His shoulder is still not right and causes him some pain when he tries.  I may place the luggage on his lap and push him.

All in all, it was not a great weekend, but, not a bad one either.  I was hoping Jack would call this weekend.  Hopefully he will call tonight.

I couldn't find husband last night.  Scared me.  I finally found him in Jack's old room, in the dark, with a flashlight, re-arranging his tools in there.  That was strange.  I convinced him to get back in bed, all the while he was protesting that he had to move things around.  Shook me up for awhile.

Day after tomorrow we leave.  Looking forward to seeing my son again.  Looking forward to getting away from here.

My only hope is that husband will be OK while we are gone.  I know he is looking forward to seeing Jack again too.  For husband and Jack's sake, I want this trip to be a happy one, filled with good memories.

I can hope, can't I?

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Duct tape for me?

Another quiet day yesterday.  I spent the day doing my usual housework, laundry and grocery shopping.  Husband sat on the couch for a long while.  He never does that.  He is always on the bed.  He asked me several times when we are leaving for San Antonio.  I had to tell him that it was Saturday and we were leaving on Wednesday.  When I thought that would suffice, he then proceeded to ask me what the date was and what the date was when we were leaving.

I got our reservations for the shuttle from the airport to the hotel yesterday too.  At first, this guy told me that if there were other people on the shuttle, and, because husband is in a wheelchair, we might have to wait at the airport for him to take other people to their hotels, then, come back and get us.  That didn't sit too well with me, after all, I was making a reservation.  Once I spoke my mind, he must have realized how stupid he sounded, then said that because I was the first one to make a reservation for Wednesday, then, we would be first for pick up and drop off.  Glad you see it my way mister.

I went on Google Earth to see where our Hotel is in reference to Lackland AFB.  Man, it's right down the street from us.  About a mile.  

I was reading the Schedule of Events for the ceremonies, and, it looks like we will have plenty of free time with Jack.  Thurs and Fri, at around 1:00 PM, he will be released to spend the rest of the day with us.  He will have to be back on base by 8:00 PM.  Saturday is totally free with us.  Sunday, we won't be able to see him as we fly back out at 11:55 AM.  He leaves for Sheppard AFB on Monday, the 12th.  That's where his Technical School is.  I think he'll be there for 12 - 16 weeks.

Today I plan on packing some stuff.  Been checking the weather there, not cold, but, not hot either.  Some rain in the forecast.  Of course, I opened my big mouth again and was telling husband what I was going to pack, and, of course, he started to argue with me about his clothes.  When, oh when am I ever going to learn I cannot reason with someone afflicted with Alzheimer's?  You'd think I'd have learned my lesson by now, but, no.  I agreed with whatever he said, (I don't even know what he said.  I tuned him out) and will just pack the clothes and tape my big mouth shut.

That's a feat in itself.

Keeping my big mouth shut, that is!!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Quiet on the outside; Loud on the inside

It's been a quiet week.  Reminds me of an aftermath of the storm that was last week.  There has been a lot of reflecting, decisions and the reality of my situation.  For the past few days, I have been going back into the past.  Of the night husband and I met, of our dating, the butterflies I had when he would walk in the door, walking with my arm looped through his, our excitement of finding each other and, the plans we made together.

Fast forward to the here and now.  There are no butterflies.  I look at husband with pity now.  The struggle he has to walk and talk.  Once in awhile, I see fear in those once vibrant eyes.  We don't loop our arms together anymore.  He's in a wheelchair.  The excitement is gone, replaced with me making life and death decisions.  It wasn't supposed to be this way.

I'm not alone, only, at times, I feel so very alone.  There are other people going through this awful disease too.  While it doesn't make me feel any better about my situation, I'm not the only one who lives with this disease.

As they were taking husband to the hospital last week, one of the paramedics said, "My God, he's only 47." I heard that and it has echoed in my head for a week now.  I think that's what separates us from a lot of other folks.  Most of the men and women suffering from Alzheimer's are older.  They've lived a full life.

My husband won't live to see 50.  Now that's reality for you.

There is no real laughter in my house anymore.  Oh, there's a laugh here and there, but, not genuine laughter. And, if there is a laugh, husband looks around trying to figure out what that sound is.

Counting the days until we leave for San Antonio.  I've been checking the weather there.  Seems pretty mild. Warmer than here.  Wondering what kind of clothes to bring, so, I'll bring some warmer clothes and some cooler clothes.

Jack says he would like to eat Tex-Mex food.  Wants to experience it.  I don't know about Tex-Mex, as we are spoiled here in New Mexico with authentic Mexican food.  But, for him, we'll do it.  He says there are a lot of restaurants on base as well.  We will play it by ear and decide on the spot.

In a nutshell, it's been a quiet week.  God knows I needed it.  Only, the thoughts going on in my head won't stop.

It's quite loud in there.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

My child-man

Thank you for your thoughtful comments.  How I wish it were that easy to not take husband.  I would love nothing better than to board that plane alone.  It is not possible, as he remembers that Jack is graduating, that we are going to the graduation and we will fly.  I think by not taking him, well, that may do him in.  

As far as what happened to husband, it's something I'd rather not talk about, but, to put it in a nutshell, he became delusional, disoriented and uncontrollable.  Kristen and I could not bring him out of it.  It was an awful scene.  It took many hours to bring him out of it.  Even when I brought him home, he was still in a state, but, seemed more aware of his surroundings.  By Saturday, he seemed more like himself, or, rather, more like what he has become.  We have settled back into our routine, only now, I have this cloud over me.  Waiting for the other shoe to drop.

I had a long talk with FIL on the phone yesterday.  He has been ill and I didn't want to burden him, but, husband called him and I took over.  Told him everything that had happened last week.  We share a common bond, he and I, after all.  He told me that husband was entering the final stages of this disease, that's what husband's mother had done as well.  He said, soon, too soon, husband will cease to talk, watch him closely for any delusions,  and play the waiting game.  I told him about placing husband and he agreed.

He cried, I cried.  

The other kids know of my decision and all agree with me.  Jack is the only one who does not know.  He will find out soon enough.

Husband has been so so.  I talked with him about flying, and how he has to be on his best behavior.  He promised he would behave.  What other married couple talk this way?  Telling your husband he has to behave on a plane?  Oh, how I hate this. 

I am looking forward to leaving the city for awhile.  Going someplace I have never been.  I was reading the brochure on Jack's graduation.  We will have plenty of time for play.  It will be nice.  Jack says that he wants to take us places while there.  He hasn't seen much of San Antonio, but, a lot of the guys are taking their families around and about the sights and he wants to take us.  May do me some good.

We leave one week from today.  I will board that plane with excitement.  I will try not to think about the ugly of Alzheimer's.  I will try not to look at husband.  I will try to forget that he is dying and play pretend we are just like any other couple, going to their son's graduation.  I will try to escape it all.  Even if it's for 4 days only.

Yes, I'll do fine.  The only thing that keeps me going right now is seeing Jack's face.  That child-man.  How I will hug him.  Just to see his face again.  

Oh yes, I'll do just fine.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

It's final

I'm still here.  I have had a very rough time since last Thursday.  Mentally and physically.  I have had to come to the conclusion that within 6 months, I will have to place husband in a nursing home.  This decision has been solely based on what happened last week.

Husband had to be taken by ambulance to hospital.  There, they put him on Suicide Watch.  I could not see him.  They would come out every few hours and let me know how he was doing.  I was finally able to bring him home late, early Friday morning.

It's not that I'm throwing in the towel, or giving up.  No.  I just know that for him to receive the best care and to be in a medical environment, well, a nursing home will have to suffice.

I don't know how I'm feeling anymore.  I was so looking forward to going to San Antonio and seeing my boy graduate.  Oh, I'm still going, but, with a somber outlook on the future.

But, I will smile and be so happy and proud of my son.  He doesn't need to know what has transpired.  He'll find out soon enough.

This is where I am at today.  I have made my final decision.  Each time I look at husband and see nothing in his eyes, it makes me feel better about my decision.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Decisions, Decisions

I have had a rough couple of days.  Husband spent Thursday in the hospital.  He had an episode that I could not quite ignore.  He is better and I am left to pick up the pieces.  My emotions are all over the place.  I am mad, sad and everything in-between.

I am supposed to meet with some people who offer Caregiver services.  If I agree for one to come to the house, I will be able to look for a job.  This care giving on my own is not working.  I have realized I can't do it on my own.  I don't think anyone can.

If this Caregiver thing does not work out, then I will have no other choice but to place husband in a nursing facility where they are equipped to handle difficult situations.

My heart is heavy today.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Wheelchair vs Scooter Chair

I think I've found one of the reasons why husband has to go to the bathroom so much at night.  He drinks a lot of water.  We both do.  So, I've eliminated any water past 8 PM.  Last night was OK, he did get up once, but, made it to the bathroom.  No accidents.  I was exhausted yesterday.  Needless to say, I slept like a rock last night.

We had a decent day yesterday.  Husband seemed quiet and somewhat depressed.  I thought of calling Dr A's office, to see if maybe I should take him in.  Unfortunately, there is nothing that can be done, it's the process and progression of the disease.  But, when someone you love is sick, your first instinct is to take them to the Dr's.

We never did get a Scooter Chair.  Medicare and Humana would not approve it because we have a manual wheelchair and they said it would work fine.  I am not happy with Humana, but, the coverage is good.

A medical supply store here locally is coming this afternoon to install a new charger for the older scooter chair father in law gave to us months ago.  They gave me quite a discount with a free installation thrown in.  I cannot transport it, but, it will work just fine here in the house.  The walker will be put away.  It doesn't help anymore.  He will be put in the chair permanently now.

I have to call Humana this morning.  I need to find out if they will pay for a nurse to come to the home.  I hate calling them.  They have me listed as Power of Attorney, (papers from attorney 2 years ago) and still insist on speaking to husband,  even after I tell them he has Alzheimer's, but, they want him to give them permission to speak with me.  It's an ordeal.  By the time I finally get to speak with them, I'm frustrated, and have to really hold my tongue.

I have had my moments since night before last.  The happiness and excitement about going to Jack's graduation has been replaced with such sadness.

I caught Kristen crying in her room yesterday.  I was concerned and asked her what was wrong.  She just pointed to our bedroom.  Nothing more needed to be said.

Husband has gotten up.  He looks confused.  He is nodding off as he sits in his chair in the living room.  It's not a pretty sight.  He will jerk his head upright, look around the room, realize he is in the living room, then, nod off again.

Another day in the life.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012


I woke up around 1 AM to hear husband talking to himself in the bathroom.  I keep a nightlight on in the bathroom for him so he can see in the middle of the night.  I got up, went into the bathroom and found him in the shower, going to the bathroom.  He had wet himself.  He was upset I had found him this way.

By then, the dogs were restless, so I let them outside.  I heard the shower go on.  Brought the dogs back in and went back to bed.  I sat on the side of the bed and waited for the shower to go off.  After several minutes, dogs still restless, I went into the bathroom and asked him what he was doing.  He said he was taking a shower, to leave him alone.  Uh, no, wasn't going to do that.  I went and got him clean underwear and sat on the toilet, and waited for him to finish.  Finally, he turned the water off.

And there, in the shower, at 1:30 in the morning, my husband, that big strong, hard working man, who has fought the good fight, broke down completely.  He cried like no wife should ever witness again.  He was leaning against the shower wall, sobbing, telling me I should put him in a home, he was a burden.  I got a towel, started talking to him as I was drying him off.  Told him I loved him, I was there for him, I wasn't going anywhere.

Helped him out of the shower, sat him on the toilet and finished drying him.  He was still sobbing.  Big, wracking sobs.  Helped him to bed, where I covered him up, soothed his hair, still damp from his forehead.  As I was doing so, I imagined that monster, just inside his head, laughing and mocking me.

No wife should of witnessed that.  My heart is a mess.

It is now 2:30 in the morning.  I cannot sleep.  So, I came here.

When the sun comes up, as it always does, I will, for the first time, put my big, strong husband in diapers.

That sun, the promise of a new day.  Only, that promise of a new day will mean something much more now.  It will mark our final journey into the depths of hell known as the final stages of Alzheimer's.

May the Lord be with us.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Time for Nurse

Husband wanted to go to Sportsman's Warehouse yesterday.  Now, after my experience with Wal Mart the day before, I could not imagine myself in any store.

Oh, the things one will do for love.

Of course, it was busy.  What was I thinking?  Husband wanted to get a Dry Box.  I had no clue what this was, but, pushed him through the throngs of people to ask for assistance in locating a Dry Box.

Luckily, the people there are very nice and helpful.  We came, we saw and we conquered!!

Once home, he said his shoulder and arm was bothering him.  I got him settled in bed and decided to have a nice quiet Sunday.  And it was.

There has been a noticeable change in husband.  His memory is just about gone in some aspects.  Of course he remembers who I am, who the kids are, and that we are going to San Antonio.  Everything else has been wiped out.  He asked several times over the course of yesterday, what day it was.  What was the date, was I cooking dinner, what was I cooking for dinner, did he have any clean clothes, (uh, duh) was I going to do laundry (ditto) and what day it was.  Over and over and over and over and over.

Since the fall last week, he has not been sleeping much during the day.  Which is good, however, it makes my days long.  When I ask him a question, he stares blankly at me for a minute, then will give me an answer. Most of the time, I have a hard time understanding him.  I am getting used to it, and have had to really concentrate on what he is saying.  When around other people, they look to me to translate on what he is saying.  He gets frustrated at times, trying to remember a word.  He stumbles on words and his speech is slurred.

When we see Dr A in December, I am going to ask for Home Health Care.  I know it's time.  At least that'll give me some free time to run errands, or, go to Starbucks, sit outside, and enjoy an espresso.  The nurse will also be able to advise me on anything I will need to address.

This turning point in this disease has been hard for me to see.  The falls, the massive confusion, the memory, the speech, the everything.  I find myself watching a commercial on TV and getting tears in my eyes.

Yes, I need the help.  Why does it have to hurt so much though?

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Shopaholic? Not me!

So, husband has decided to see things my way.  He was much better yesterday.  Will see what today brings.

Marie's car is still broke down, so, I took her and the kids to Wal Mart yesterday.  On a Saturday afternoon.  10 days before Halloween.  OY!!

I knew it was bad before I even entered the store.  There were only about 12 shopping carts left.  Now, I do not like shopping.  I do not like Wal Mart all that well, except for their prices.  I do not like ignorant shoppers.  I do not like rude shoppers.

What I do like is, a regular grocery store, playing soft music, going up to the deli and having 1 person in front of me, instead of 14.  I do like being able to stroll the aisles, glancing at products, checking prices, instead of, stopping and having person behind you make a huge sigh because you stopped.  I do like to browse the meat section, checking out meats, instead of when checking out meats, having someone reach all the way around you and grab a package of meat.

There is a good point I'm trying to make.  With my very limited budget, and my dislike for shopping, I will never become a Shopaholic.

Score 1 for me.

Disclaimer:  This post is not intended to slam Wal Mart.  I shop at Wal Mart too.  Just not on a Saturday afternoon, 10 days before any given Holiday.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Ad Lib for real

Husband is turning into one of the worst patients I have ever seen.  Oh, he's a handful, I'll tell ya.  He's supposed to rest, elevate his arm and I will ice it several times per day, 20 minutes each time.   Every time I turned around yesterday, there he was, holding on to his walker and wincing in pain.  I would guide him back to bed,  all the while reminding him of Dr's orders.  Reminding an Alzheimer's patient of Dr's orders is like trying to drink a cup of coffee with a fork!!

I would apply an ice pack, time it on my microwave, and go back in, 2 minutes later, to find the ice pack on the bed.  He would tell me 20 minutes were up.  I then would have to explain to him that it had only been 2 minutes and put it back on.  Of course, he would argue with me, telling me he knows how to tell time, that he had been timing it on the clock in the bedroom.  Now, husband can no longer tell time of any clock mind you, but, he insisted that he was timing it on his own.  Oh, yes, he's a handful alright.  Exasperating is the word that comes to mind.

Pat, Christine & Jason came over for a visit last night.  We had a nice time visiting with them.  They brought a cake.  Christine was upset that husband has gone downhill so fast since Jack left.  She said he sounded like he was drunk.  She was very concerned that I had to take him to the hospital relating to his fall.  I guess it is a shock to some who have not seen him in weeks, to see just how much he has declined.  She did ask me how I planned on flying husband to San Antonio.  Won't it be hard, she asked.  Of course, I replied.  But, being that I'm around him 24/7,  well, you just do it.

When husband is talking and gets confused on a word, I automatically fill in the blanks for him.  He always looks at me and I add the word he cannot pronounce anymore.  It's just something I do.  Pat & Christine were surprised that I do this.  I explained to them, when you are around him all the time, it comes natural and goes with the territory.

After they had left, husband got settled in bed, I was sitting here in the living room thinking about that.  I do do that, I thought.  No one teaches you anything on Alzheimer's patients.  It's just something that comes natural to me.  Could be from having children.  You know, when they are first learning how to talk? You always know what they are trying to say, so, you fill in the blanks.  Same with husband now.

With this disease taking over, it's been exhausting and a great learning curve for me, all at the same time.  I surprise myself that I take things in stride, see what damage has been done, adjust to that, mentally taking notes on what he can and can't do anymore.  I pick up when he can't.

Reminds me of a play with a live audience.  Say, one person forgets their lines, the other actor will swoop down and ad lib, until that person recovers enough to finish their lines.  And, the show goes on.

In my case, this is no play with a live audience.  It's the real deal.  Real life stuff.  But, for husband's sake, the show must go on.  Or, life must go on.  It's that simple.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Twisted Slings

I had an interesting day yesterday.  As I mentioned earlier, husband took a bad fall Tuesday morning.  By yesterday morning, he could not lift his right arm.  I told him that was it, I was taking him in.  So, around 10:30 AM, off we went to University Hospital of New Mexico.  Instead of the ER, I took him to the Adult Urgent Care, located near the ER.  I had no wish to spend at least 12 hours in the ER.  I opted to spend 5 hours in Urgent Care.

Once I got him settled in the waiting room, he had to go to the bathroom.  Luckily, the bathroom is handicapped equipped, so it was an easy feat.  We waited about 30 minutes before they called his name.  As the nurse took hold of his wheelchair, she said, "No, you can stay here, I've got him, I'm only going to do vitals and bring him back out here."  I said, "Ma'am, he has Alzheimer's."  Nurse, eyes wide, said, "Oh, well, follow me."  I gave her the low down on why we were there, gave him his weight and height.

Back out in the lobby we went.  After about an hours wait time, a girl came in.  The receptionist asked her why she was there.  She said she had been puking since Tuesday, could not hold anything down.  She got checked in and during this time, I said a silent prayer that she would not sit next to me, as (1) I don't handle puke well and (2) I didn't want to catch what she had.  Of course, she sat right behind me, in perfect line for her to puke all over me.  Lo and behold, just then, they called husband's name.

Another hour of waiting when finally, the Dr came in.  She was very nice, examined husband, asked him all kinds of questions to which husband nodded his head (you know, the sign that he does not understand anything) which was my cue to announce who I was and that husband "has Alzheimer's".  She looks immediately at husband's eyes, (she knows her stuff) and turns to me to finish off her round of questions.   She says the shoulder may be fractured, it's swollen, or the collar bone.  Or, it could be that he dislocated the shoulder.  She orders X-rays.

We didn't have to wait long, so, during our wait, I had to go to the bathroom.  When I got out, I saw a nurse wheeling husband down the hallway to X-ray.  I offered to come along, but, she said she could handle it.  I sat back down in the exam room and, as she was wheeling husband, she asked what is name was.  He told her.  Then, she asked his birth date.  Proudly, I heard husband speak loud and clear his birth date.  Once that was done, I heard him say, "I know my name and birth date", like a child.  I got a twinge of sadness, yet had to chuckle about it at the same time.

Making this long story short, no fractures, no dislocations, just a severe contusion to the shoulder.  They put him in a sling, told me to apply ice for 20 minutes several times a day and keep it elevated.  Because he is on some high powered drugs, they could not prescribe any pain med.    We were set free.

By the time I got him to the curb to park, so I could take the shuttle to my car, then back up to get husband, he had somehow got the sling twisted up around his neck, his arm hanging at his side.  What a sight.  I started laughing, trying to fix him up.  Got the shuttle, threatening husband to "stay right here", remembering he couldn't use his arm to roll the wheelchair anywhere anyway.  Once I got back up, he had that sling twisted up again.  Stop to fix again.  We left to start our way back home, just in time for rush hour traffic to begin.

I will say, husband is the worst patient ever.  I took the sling off of him, elevated his arm and iced it.  He ate dinner and finally fell asleep.  What a day.  Of course, as the story of my life goes, I always gotta have a funny to go along with a serious event!!

By the way, once we get back from San Antonio there will be some serious pictures here!!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

How's your day?

I am in countdown mode as of today.  It's not just the idea of seeing my boy again and all that he accomplished at basic training, it's the very idea of going somewhere.  With all that being said, I am a little nervous for husband.  This constant state of confusion can lead to a very difficult trip, but, I am thinking positive.

I don't go out much.  I stay home, take care of my home, care for husband, and when we do go out, it's not far and not for long.  So, to actually leave my house for 4 whole days, well, yes, one can get a little flutter of excitement.

Tyler will watch the dogs.  Got that covered.  My little one, Snowball, is going to be a mess while I'm gone.  He is so attached to me.  I made a joke the other day and said he was going to need counseling when I get back.  Bessie on the other hand, is attached to me, but, she is independent, just let her bark her fool head off and she's good!

Yesterday I went through my closet and brought out the winter clothes.  It's getting pretty chilly here in the mornings, warming up some, but, the shorts have been put away.  Last night, while watching TV, I got a fire going in the fireplace.  It warmed up the room.  I have not turned the heat on yet.  I don't want my gas bill to go up.  Kind of testing myself, seeing just how long I can go without heat in the house.

I ran to Walgreens yesterday.  The clerk noticed my unusual upbeat manner.  She was so nice and asked me how my day was going.  I wanted to stand on the counter and announce to everyone in the store that I, was going on a big jet airplane to see my son graduate from basic training in the Air Force.  Then, my common sense kicked in and decided not to.  I told her my day was fabulous and made sure she was having a good day.

Funny, what a little trip will do for a person's morale!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Big Girl Pants

Thank you for the sweet comments on our trip to see Jack graduate from Air Force Basic Training.  I am excited to go.  Jack called Monday night and was just as excited.  He has done so well.  He said the worst thing has been the muggy weather.  He also said that the first 3 weeks were the hardest for him, but, has made friends, several of them are going to the same technical school he's going to, so, it's not that bad. My son has turned out to be a fine young man.

Husband took a bad fall yesterday, in the hallway, on tile floor.  He didn't hit his head, but, his right arm is sore and back as well.  He is suppose to use the walker in the house at all times, but, will forget it and attempt to walk away.  Last week I could not find his walker.  I asked him where it was, he looked at me blankly.  I went all through the house.  Just on a whim, I went outside and there it was, in the middle of the driveway!!  What?  When I brought it in, I asked him what he was doing outside, he stared at me and said the walker went out on it's own, he was not outside.  I had the front door open, so, I did not hear him go outside.  Guess I need to put chimes on the screen door as well?

I am doing OK.  I seem to be getting out of this slump I'd been in.  Could be because I am taking a plane trip to San Antonio?  I've also been having quiet times with myself.  Listening to my heart.  Discovering new things about me.  I'm not as sad as I've been as well.  Life is happening all around me, I just need to jump on that wagon.  I can't sit in this house and think of the inevitable, it'll drive me insane.  So, I've chosen to join the living again.  I have to.

It's not that I ignore husband, no, but, I am starting to plan my life without husband.  I know it's coming, you can see it everyday.  We all have choices, it's what choices you make that will shape your life.  In my case, I am making choices that will shape my future.  I will miss my husband, for sure, but, he's gone now anyways, his physical presence is here, yes, but, my husband is gone.  I have this pitiful body I'm caring for, like a rag doll.  I like to think he's got one foot in heaven.  If I think that way, it makes it easier on me to let go of his other foot.

My book is coming along.  It's hard, this writing stuff.  There are days I do no writing, then, like an explosion, out comes the laptop and smoke is left on the keyboard.  It has to be quiet in the house.  Now I get why writers have a quiet place.  I am thinking of turning Jack's old room into my office.  Someplace besides sitting here on my couch.

I don't know the first thing in getting this book published.  Do you have to pay money for them to publish?  Will my book be good enough for publishing?   I've searched on the internet for publishing companies, but, I think I will have to have a finished copy before I start pounding and hounding publishers.  I hope this book will be interesting enough.  Time will tell.

So, life continues.  It's hard dealing with husband, it's heartbreaking at times, but, like everything else in my life, I deal.  If there were a test at the end of each day, I would probably fail sometimes.  On the days that I don't fail, it's just that I've put on my Big Girl Pants and gotten through.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

We are going to San Antonio for Jack's graduation.  My heart is happy and full this morning.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Let's play pretend today!!

Introducing adult diapers to husband yesterday did not go well.  I eased into it while he was eating breakfast.  I did not call them adult diapers, I said they were protective pads, as that is actually the name on the package.  Husband became quite angry and said he would never, ever wear diapers.  I explained to him that it was just for protection and if out somewhere, if there was an accident, it wouldn't show through.  Nothing I said worked.  I opened the package and showed him how they fit, comfortable and soft and how they would protect him.  It was a no go.

He finished his breakfast and went to bed for the whole day.  He would not talk to me.  He would not acknowledge me if I walked into the room.

End of Day 1 of introducing protective pads.

It's like everything else I've had to get him to use.  First, it was the cane.  He fought me on that, said he could walk just fine.  Then, using the walker.  That was a real fight.  Next, graduating to the wheelchair.  That was a biggie.  Now this.  It's going to be a challenge for me.  A big one.  I am going to leave this one alone for awhile.  After his reaction yesterday, I may have to let him have accidents while out and about, for him to make up his mind that he, in fact, does need to wear these protective pads.

Like I've said so many times before, I fly by the seat of my pants here, folks.

I don't know what today will be like.  He did say good morning to me as I got up this morning.  He may, in fact, have forgotten yesterday for all I know.  Actually, I hope so.  Once again, perks of Alzheimer's.

Husband has been very restless during the night.  Every time I woke up last night, he was in the bathroom.  A little spooky.

I have not heard from Jack in 2 weeks.  I am sure everything is OK, he may be so busy, what with them winding down Basic Training, getting ready for graduation.  I would love to hear from him.  I usually write him a long letter on Sunday, and try to send a card during the week.  I'd love to pick up the phone and have Jack on the other end say, "Hi Mom."

Today I will not mention protective pads.  I will go about my day, pretending nothing is wrong with husband. He likes it that way.  Other than a little problem with his legs, according to him, he's fine, just fine.

After yesterday, I think I will play pretend too.  Easier on me for sure.