Tag Archives: Family

More downsides to strokes.


Just when we think he is settled, has accepted the current and future situation, he throws a monkey wrench into the works. Now he has informed us that they are teaching him to drive so he can drive when he goes home. He had agreed with us that he wasn’t going home and even if somehow that happens, he will NOT be driving. It is just not happening.

I can’t take all this constant changing and upset. I had no idea at what was in store for us from a stroke. I don’t know where he got the idea he will be driving let alone going home. Wishful thinking I gather.

Not sure what tomorrow will bring.

Tessa

Advocate for mental health and invisible illnesses, also a devout Christian

Author – http://www.finallyawriter.com (this blog contains my old work mostly although occasionally I do add something new here), new work is mainly on this blog http://www.tessacandoit.com

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Food banks here in NJ – Rehab Facility


Today I went to the food bank. I feel weird going and getting free food, but my low income makes me eligible and at least we have a communal table that everyone puts the food they don’t eat on and that way there is no waste.

Just realized no pasta this month and not much spaghetti sauce. We did go later though. I got fish this time instead of another whole chicken. I need to start eating at home, but with all this running around to the rehab facility where my dad is makes me eat on the run. I got to stop this.

There is someone there preying on the seniors especially. Talked my dad into wanting this hair dyed black again and a haircut. She is not from the facility and she tells them it is free while hoping they will tip her most of what they would have paid the facility. We had to make him understand what was going on and I talked to the social worker there and she gave us the sheet to prepay for a real haircut and we talked him out of thinking that he needed his hair dyed. His grey hair is distinguishing and black hair would look a little silly on an 86 year old man. We filled out the sheet for him and prepaid it.

He doesn’t know any better and my sister had told him to do what he is told, but this we didn’t see coming. We meant cooperate with the nurses and aides. He was giving them a hard time right after the stroke. He is trying so hard to do what makes them happy.

The other day he called me mommy. He was joking, but it was kind of sad that I had to be in the role of parent to my parent.

And then we have those that are trying to make us feel guilty because we had to make the decision to move him into long term care/nursing home after rehab is done. He will need 24/7 care and that is not an option. I wish people would mind their own business. That decision wasn’t easy for us and we shed many a tear over it and still are on occasion.

I am becoming closer to my sister. Shame it had to be our dad’s stroke that brought us together.

Tessa

Advocate for mental health and invisible illnesses, also a devout Christian

Author – http://www.finallyawriter.com (this blog contains my old work mostly although occasionally I do add something new here), new work is mainly on this blog http://www.tessacandoit.com

We all have our crosses to bear. (not religious)


This saying came to mind when I was feeling sorry for myself. I was talking to my sister and after we bared our souls I mentioned that we all have our own crosses to bear. What seems so terrible to me may mean something else to someone else. To me my life sucks and yet when I think about it I know there are others much more worse off. Truthfully that doesn’t make me feel better.

I am in constant pain (chronic for most of my life, even as a child), I have mental issues and though I sort of have my Bipolar under control there is still depression hanging around. Anxiety is raising its ugly head. Stress is also a tremendous pressure and I am in constant worry about my dad and his stroke. Not only do we have to keep him in good spirits, work with his fading memory, and deal with the constant paperwork as we move along this journey.

We just found out that the facility we moved him to for subacute rehab doesn’t have room for him for the 100 days Medicare will pay for. We misunderstood. So if he is improving and needs more subacute rehab care we will have to look for a new facility that will have enough time for whatever amount of time he has left with Medicare and also long term care as well. We can’t afford to have someone come in 24/7, but depending on the amount of care he will need we might be able to keep him in his home with some help. I don’t work, but can’t physically do a lot of lifting and stuff like that. Making sure he eats, trying to keep the house somewhat clean are a possibility if that is all he needs. We could see about meals on wheels or whatever that program is called here. That would be one meal dealt with.

Right now everything is up in the air. We can’t plan anything yet until they assess where he is medically. We were told to apply to Medicaid so it is in place if he has to go to a nursing home. Everything will be sold and then Medicaid would kick in, Where he is at now is $10,000 a month. He is not eligible for assisted living. They require 2 full years of the monthly payment in advance and that amount depends on the level of necessary care. Not an option.

I figured out how to hook up this special antennae to my tv that will pick up the free channels within a 40 mile radius. No cable shows, but I can watch tv now. I even found a game show station. I was happy to see that “So You Think You Can Dance” is one of the channels. There is also an old show channel. Still exploring.

Tessa – advocate for mental health and invisible illnesses, also devout Christian

Author – http://www.finallyawriter.com (this blog contains my old work mostly although occasionally I do add something new here), new work is mainly on this blog http://www.tessacandoit.com

Extra pain pills helping pain, but making me sleepy! Stroke and memory loss!


I kept dozing off while at the rehab center with my dad. We had a family care meeting to see where he stands.

Right now if he went home he would need a nurse 24/7 (not affordable).

Their current goal is to have him functioning with help in 4-5 weeks as they say he is making progress. Maybe physically he is, but what about the memory loss. He doesn’t know how many children he has. He doesn’t remember his address (I am fairly sure his driving days are over anyhow). He is slowly losing his birthdate, which is important in all things medical and I doubt he remembers his social security number. And now he is asking for my mom’s birthyear. So that is also disappearing. Who knows what else that hasn’t come to our attention yet.

He is in a diaper as he can’t get to the bathroom in time nor use a urinal though that doesn’t surprise me as he is in a diaper that he can’t get off anyhow. We have to hope they know what they are doing.

He feeds himself with his opposite hand due to his left side neglect. Trying to teach him to remember to turn his head with his food tray as he doesn’t know what is on his left as it doesn’t occur to him to look there without prompting. I have also been working with him to turn his plate as half of it is on the left side which he doesn’t see. I find it hard put to think he could do this again on his own. We don’t want him in long care rehab or a nursing home, but it looks like that will be happening. We do not mention it. We still talk as if he is going home.

I haven’t cried yet although a good cry would help clear the air some. He’s lost his dignity and just does what he is told.

This sucks!

Tessa – advocate for mental health and invisible illnesses, also devout Christian

Author – http://www.finallyawriter.com (this blog contains my old work), new work is on this blog http://www.tessacandoit.com

The positive side of a stroke!


3 weeks ago as some of you know, my dad, had a stroke. My sister and I had never really dealt with a real live person with a stroke. We didn’t know what to expect and I suppose we still don’t really. Every day is a new challenge.

In the scheme of things, his stroke was not catastrophic. He has good and bad days and two good days in a row we celebrate.

He is like a child again and has to be retrained in things we take for granted. We look for the little things that show we are still going forward. His stroke was in the right side of his brain and therefore his left side was affected. He “neglects” it.

We started taking him out in his wheelchair for a walk around the facility and to their outside porch. We pointed out trees and cars and the hospital across the way. He perked up some. That was a good move. Who knew? He seemed so out of it and we just let him be.

Today he went to a new facility. A sub-acute rehab center. When I talked to him over the phone (we have to hold our cellphones up to his ear with the speaker on) he told me about the move and what number his room was and that my sister had gotten him a window bed. He wasn’t there last weekend. There is more hope. We have to learn to re-stimulate him in an interest in his life and future as it is not his time to go.

We have a long road still ahead of us, but now we feel he has an interest in that road and will slowly walk it with us.

Tessa – advocate for mental health and invisible illnesses, also devout Christian

Author – http://www.finallyawriter.com (this blog contains my old work), new work is on this blog http://www.tessacandoit.com

Word Press Happiness Engineers have finally made me happy


Finally they have have gotten things straightened out. I think anyway, time will tell.

The stress is really affecting me and I have no patience to begin with. My blood pressure has been very high. Dr increased my medication, but it took weeks for it to come down again. The last 2 days have been lower. My sister is taking her time off and is urging me to do the same. We can’t spend the rest of his life spending every day hovering over the hospital staff. She keeps reminding me to take some time for myself.

I didn’t go today and don’t plan on going to Friday. She will get him moved to a sub-acute rehab center Thursday before her vacation begins on Friday.

I played Bingo at my apartment complex. I won a game.

Tomorrow there is a meeting at the complex about the fact that they plan on trying to turn all the public housing senior centers into HUD (Housing and Urban Development) properties instead. Still not sure how this will affect me and my benefits provided currently by Housing Authority. We might be moved, displaced or remain here. Rents may or may not be raised. That is a grave concern for all of us barely squeaking by on our measly government checks. Mine is disability and some are regular social security and others are simply working at low-paying jobs or whatever.

Tessa – advocate for mental health and invisible illnesses, also devout Christian

Author – http://www.finallyawriter.com (this blog contains my old work), new work is on this blog http://www.tessacandoit.com

Cooking With Fibromyalgia & Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – By Adrienne Dellwo


When you have fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome, cooking poses a lot of challenges—standing in the kitchen can cause pain and wear you out; problems with short-term memory and multi-tasking make it hard to follow the steps of even a simple recipe; and it’s easy to get frustrated and overwhelmed with the whole process.

It can be tempting to avoid it altogether, but that’s not realistic for most of us. Sick or not, we have to eat. Because many of us with these conditions need a specially tailored diet, or at least feel better when we eat healthier, cooking is essential.

Fortunately, there’s a lot you can do to simplify cooking and ease its strain on your body.

READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE FOR SUGGESTIONS BY ADRIENNE DELLWO

 

 

Teresa (Tessa) Dean Smeigh

-Advocate for Mental and Invisible Illnesses

-Author of Articles, Stories and Poems

http://www.tessacandoit.com

http://www.finallyawriter.wordpress.com (no longer canceling this blog, just not adding new work to it, sign up for http://www.tessacandoit.com for the new posts).