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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Do you remember the joke about the old people having a conversation that went something like: "Boy, it's windy out." "No, it's not, it's Thursday" "No thanks, I just had a drink."

Conversations with my mother are becoming more like that. She hears fine, but her memory is erratic. The other day she asked me three times in 30 min. where we were going. She called my aunt in Houston and complained because the bus didn't come one day. My aunt told her that the bus doesn't run on Saturdays. My mother said "It is Thursday" and couldn't be convinced otherwise.

I hear "Why didn't you tell me?" a lot, and nothing can convince her I did tell her, whatever it is, but she doesn't remember.

We are going to see the cardiologist today. She's seeing all the specialists now, just to get her into the system here, transferred from her old doctors after her move here a couple of months ago. We're taking all her meds with us, so I'm going to ask the Dr. if those meds might cause some memory loss and go from there.

I really know that her memory has not been the same since the last episode in the hospital at the beginning of the year when she had a reaction to some drug and went out of her mind for 24 hrs. When she came out of that, her memory returned but was not the same. She has good days and then. . . Right now the good days outnumber the forgetful ones, but it's pretty scary to think what she might do in the wrong state of mind.

I think she also has some aphasia - she knows what she's saying but the words coming out don't make much sense. I have to run everything through a mental filter and decide if she really wants what she's saying or if this is a time that I have to dedide what's good for her.

All of this leads to lots of arguments. She gets angry with me because I don't agree with her on what day it is, what doctor we're seeing, what I said yesterday, etc. etc.

She manages living on her own pretty well, with me checking on her a lot, but I fear what sort of "incident" is coming next, and what it might mean. The next step, I guess, is assisted living. I'll be researching that as soon as I can.

All this to explain why I'm not as active here as I once was. Since I've become a caregiver for her, my life is as erratic as her memory. I fear hard times coming.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUSTJO66 7/17/2010 1:04AM

    Karen, I'm also so sorry you are going through such a hard time with your mother. My prayers go out to you and your mom. My daughter Tammy is 45 and has Down's Syndrome...I've also noticed lately some of the problems you've mentioned with your mom's memory. She is convinced that she is only 43 and will not be convinced otherwise. She will get the days of the week mixed up and nothing we do will change her mind. She then gets angry with me or my husband when we try to help her. She's also very stubborn and will sometimes do just the opposite of what she's been told..... like not put her dirty clothes in the hamper (instead hang them back up) or I'll tell her something she has chosen to wear does not match when we're going out and instead of changing we'll have to have a fuss before she'll change. Don't get me wrong...I love her dearly and I know you love your Mom, too. So, all this said...I guess I can say...I'm also concerned about her ... and can feel your concern and worry for your mom and "yourself". We're here for you.....

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WYWIWOMAN 7/16/2010 10:51PM

    My heart goes out to you, Karen. It is so challenging watching a parent experience the changes of aging and memory. I understand from others who have 'been there' for their parent that in the end is a very gratifying time spent with caring as they were cared for. Stay strong and ask for help when you need it. And remember us because we care, too.

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CT-FL-SNOWBIRD 7/16/2010 8:16PM

    Sorry I'm so late with my comments. I just had a stressful week with my 76 year old mentally handicapped brother, who is with us every weekend, but spent 5 days with us last week. It was torture for me since he's so much work. He's like a preschooler. So I have a little idea about what your life is like! Hang in there!

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KOOCH4 7/16/2010 1:16PM

it is so sad to see our parents decline, and even harder when we have to be the care givers.
God will bless you for all you do for your Mother.
Hang in there and pray for patience.
Your a wonderful daughter, what goes around , comes around.
You are in my prayers emoticon

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BESTSUSIEYET 7/15/2010 9:11PM

    Karen - if you don't already have the book "The 36 Hour Day" I'd recommend it -- was so helpful in dealing with my Dad. When you said your Mom hasn't been the same since an incident in the hospital, my mind flashed to info I got when Dad was sick. I'm going to put more in an email to you -- look for that. God Bless You as you go through this extremely difficult phase of life -- and please remember to take care of yourself! I gained 40+ pounds when Dad was going downhill so badly. Don't add THAT stress to your life! Healthy choices will enable you to cope better -- so-called comfort foods & neglecting exercise WON'T!!

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JENNY888 7/15/2010 11:27AM

    My prayers are with you Karen. My father passed away with Alzheimer's in the past year and the end was not pleasant. I would not hesitate with the assisted living arrangement. I think you can be a better daughter to your Mom when others are sharing part of the burden. You would be able to visit all you want. I wouldn't have said that before I saw what happened with my Dad but can now see the wisdom in this decision. I'll write you more later today.

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DUMBELLE 7/15/2010 9:38AM

    My heart also goes out to you. I lost my mom in October, and it had been a long haul. A few years earlier I watched my father slowly decline and pass away.
God totally knows us and our problems, and promises that He won't give us more than we can handle. My problem is that alot of the time, I didn't give the situation to Him. I would keep taking it back and try to carry the burden alone. I know you know this Karen. Try not to argue with her; it just doesn't work. That's what I began to do with my dad, and it was so much better then. I would just nod my head and pretty much agree with him.
I agree with you totally regarding the medications. That could be a large part of the problem with your mom.
God's blessings! Susan

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PURPLELVR7 7/14/2010 10:26AM

    Karen, my heart goes out to you & so do my prayers.
It is not easy dealing with a parent whose health is less then perfect. I pray God will be with you and assist you in all you do.
Take care of yourself as well, as that is important to you and your mother

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KAYYVAUGHN 7/14/2010 6:39AM

    Good luck. It's not easy, but you can't do everything. There are excellent Assisted Livings that know how to care for your mother. You can visit frequently, but not have the total responsibility.

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    Talking to my dad is EXACTLY like that. He can't hear nuthin but he doesn't want to admit it so he tries to anticipate what he thinks you are saying. He has hearing aides but they don't help nerve deafness. He has been deaf in one ear since childhood. So we have that to deal with.

In addition, he is stubborn and rude. Every thought that enters his mind is expressed no matter how horrible. He once told a waitress at Applebees in front of my son, husband, and me that she would never be able to work at Hooters.My husband was disgusted. My son beet red in the face and mortified as he knew some of the people who worked there. I was livid and expressed my intense displeasure. Dad acted as if we were prudish Puritans and told me that I need to lighten up and that he doesn't "intend to ever be told what to do by a woman." I told him that if my son or husband ever disrespected me like that they would be told what to do by me and they would be lucky if they weren't picking their teeth up off the floor.

So it could be worse and may get that way. They are like children. I have found that it works best just to ignore their bad behavior and reward the good. Good luck, Karen.

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READINGDOC 7/13/2010 7:28PM

    Karen, I'm so sorry you are going through this. I will be praying for you.

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ACIMPEGGY 7/13/2010 5:26PM

    Oh, Karen, I am so sorry! My partner's dad had the big A (I don't know if that's your mom's trouble), and it was constant arguments and/or frustration.

There comes a time for a lot of us when suddenly we are the parent.

Great good luck, prayers and love to you both...


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FISHINGLADY66 7/13/2010 4:57PM

    Well...Karen.... Like a lot of the others expressed.... I understand what you are going through. I had the same situation with my mom. It was so frustrating then. There is no perfect answer as to how to handle them. You are in my prayers. Take the time you need for the both of you. We will always be here for you. emoticon emoticon emoticon Lot's of hugs to you.
God Bless

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GOALIEGRANDMA3 7/13/2010 1:29PM

    I understand, and pray for you both. Things like that are scary because we see what is ahead for us, too.

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JEANNE229 7/13/2010 12:10PM

    Karen, that is such a tough place to be! I remember the frustration I had when my mom started going through the same symptoms. Finally, she got so she didn't even know who I was (and she also got pretty nasty, which was not like MY mom at all!)

I wish I could offer you advice to make it easier, but I never found anything that made the decline more bearable.

Thoughts are with you, my friend.


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BELTONWALKER67 7/13/2010 8:54AM

    So sorry you are going through this and hope the doctors have an answer or can adjust the medications. We are going through similar incidents with my boss and are in the process of visiting and researching assisted living communities as his memory is not good plus he has become a little physical with us caregivers. Someone has to be with him 24/7. Remember to take time for yourself. You cannot take care of Mom if you get down. Thinking of you!

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PJSTIME 7/13/2010 7:52AM

    Oh Karen you have your hands full. I fear that stage for my dad (Alzeihmers is in his family 1/2 of his sibs have it or had it) I see him slipping some too.

Remember to take time to take care of yourself mentally and physically. And remember that she doesn't really mean half of the things she is saying and probably doesn't even remember saying them.

I hope you can get some answers from the doctor. With luck maybe a change in meds can help.

THinking about you and saying a prayer for you.

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LAFFLOTS57 7/13/2010 6:54AM

    I can feel your pain--I run both parents to assotred doc appts and try to maintain a positive flow around them (which, as you know can be challenging at times)
I am just grateful they are still present.
I applaud your good of helping out with your Mom during these difficult changes...
Best of peace to you both emoticon

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    I wish you the best of luck with your mom. Those decisions are most important for your sanity and your mother's peace of mind.

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Friday, July 09, 2010


Remember that the next time you order a WHOPPER!

Fast food is everywhere! So, Prepare, Prepare.

People spend a lot of time and effort making business plans, financial plans, burial plans, vacation plans, etc. etc.

We really need to make an eating plan, every day, every meal.

And we need a plan for when the plan we made gets disprupted, lol.

The main plan is to stay away from those fast food menus. Yes, there are some better foods on them now, and if you're careful you can get through that drive-in window and come out the other side with something that won't set you back two weeks. But SEE all those other goodies? SMELL all that wonderful fatness cooking in there?

Below is a Restaurant Guide. Find your favorite foods at your favorite place, print out the nutritional info and KEEP IT WITH YOU.

Make it a requirement that you MUST READ the nutritionals BEFORE you order anything!

What would it be like if we had to WEAR a sign on our chest listing what we ate today? Ha! I'd be pretty embarassed some days because I can really put it away.

Save us all from temptation! Who among us wants to be called a WHOPPER?


I found Popeye's Spicy Chicken and Biscuits on there! Well, I've been fooling myself, lol.

What's YOUR Fatal Food?

All our food needs a little more thought.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAYYVAUGHN 7/12/2010 6:39AM

    Thanks for restaurant guide. I bookmarked it as a favorite.

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NANA662 7/10/2010 6:37PM

    Thanks for the site. I am always interested in nutrition and we eat out often. This will help us make better choices. Nancy

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    I rarely ever eat fast food now but my weaknesses are the Burger King Big Fish and Captain D's Deluxe Seafood Platter. I don't even like to think about them.

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LAVENDERLILY 7/9/2010 5:41PM

    Thanks, Kren, for the great information. Eating out is never easy when you want to watch the calories and sodium! I will keep the site address by my computer and check it when dining out!

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SHASTA11 7/9/2010 2:24PM

    Wow, what a site. How did you find it. I'm saving it in my computer folders.

Thanks, much. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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READINGDOC 7/9/2010 12:58PM

    Thanks for the information, Kren! You always have such good stuff for us. I really appreciate you.
Lynda emoticon

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JENNY888 7/9/2010 12:13PM

    Thanks for the link. I don't have fast food often but information when I do is great.

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MCJULIEO 7/9/2010 11:16AM

    Whoa! 300 calories for 1 spicy thigh at Popeye's!


ks for the link... that's going to come in handy!

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DONNABRIGHT 7/9/2010 9:16AM


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PJSTIME 7/9/2010 8:29AM

    I don't want to be called a whopper. Thanks for the link. I used to have a horrible sweet tooth now that doesn't bother me but chips and salt. Thats my downfall now:( and some days are tougher than others. So thanks to you and spark we will make it.

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VANDYJ 7/9/2010 8:00AM

    Good Thoughts!! I really like that site. You are right, when we actually think about the amount of fat and calories we are about to consume, it changes how we feel about the food. This site is helpful for me to decide what I am going to eat before I get to the restaurant. Thanks for posting it!

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Problem measurement?

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

What's your most difficult measurement?

You know, the one you cringe upon measuring, lol. The one you're most embarassed about and the one you're least likely to share with anyone.

I'm an apple, so of course mine is my waist!

It's the first place that expands when I gain weight and the most difficult measurement for me to keep under control!

My hips are fine, my thighs are fine. . . But my waist! Ugh.

So I envy women with tiny waists. My DIL envies my slim hips. It's the old "grass is greener" syndrome, I guess.

What's YOUR problem?


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FISHINGLADY66 7/8/2010 10:05PM

    I am an apple too. My stomach is hard for me to lose weight in.

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SHASTA11 7/8/2010 2:38PM

    All of the above and below. I hate the underarm flab the most. But continue to wear short or no sleeve blouses. I've never been much on convention.

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PJSTIME 7/7/2010 6:43PM

    Hips thighs stomach and those horrible underarm wings

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    Exactly the same as yours. LOL.

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ACIMPEGGY 7/7/2010 11:47AM

    Hmmm...if I had to pick one, it would be my upper arms.

I do not feel comfortable enough with them to be able to wear tank tops - or any sleeveless tops or dresses, as far as that goes.

I only hope that, with my yo-yoing over the years, as I lose, I won't just have floppy SKIN...with strong muscle underneath.

I keep telling myself...I am not my body...I am so much more.

emoticon emoticon

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FITB4-40 7/7/2010 10:30AM

    So many parts to choose from... My stomach is definitely the area I'd like to shrink the most but my upper arms are my least favorite body part. As I lose weight, everything else shrinks but those upper arms keep flapping in the breeze!

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BUGLET- 7/7/2010 9:07AM

    I've noticed that "pears" can cover up quite easily by wearing dresses. I am an apple (the shape for heart attacks) and no matter how small I get I always have a roll and hardly any waist. Thinking on this though, I'm glad to be who I am. If you look around, you won't see anyone you'd like to be, I'm sure. I don't see anyone who I'd rather be, especially people my age. Thank you God for my good health.. emoticon

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JEANNE229 7/7/2010 8:52AM

    I'm an apple, too (hips and legs are quite thin for my size), but I also HATE my upper arms. Maybe because they have become my MOTHER's flap-in-the-wind arms. Can I pick TWO??


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DEE0973 7/7/2010 8:38AM

    My areas are stomach, hips, thigh and upper back by the arm. Ab exercises only strengthen the muscle, to lose the abs or inches anywhere for that matter requires cardio--must challenge your self and mix it up. Do strength training 2-3 times weekly and keep your calories inline and I promise you will notice the difference. I can testify to that and learn how to maintain the loss since this is a lifestyle change and not a diet. Good luck and God Bless

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KAYYVAUGHN 7/7/2010 8:31AM

    My problem is the stomach area. I have been doing floor exercises for abs and walking exercises for abs. So far, I can tell very little difference.

Does anyone have a solution?

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IRISHIVY 7/7/2010 8:12AM

    My thighs, my thighs are huge! emoticon

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Sunday, July 04, 2010

Freedom is what I love most about America!

Freedom of Speech. We can complain about our country all we want and no one is going to shoot us for it.

Freedom of Religion. We have the right to belong to any religion or church or NOT.

Freedom to Vote. We can vote for the candidate of our choosing. We don't have to vote if we don't want to vote.

No country is perfect, just like no person is perfect.
But our border concerns are never about keeping people IN.
People are dying (sometimes literally) to get into this country.
If you think about it you know why.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAYYVAUGHN 7/5/2010 4:19PM

This is so true, and we are so fortunate to live in this country. Our rights and freedom are so precious, especially when we look at other countries.

We should say a prayer every night thanking God for our freedom in America.

emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 7/5/2010 4:19:50 PM

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READINGDOC 7/5/2010 9:17AM

    Well put. Let's remember those who are putting their lives on the line so we can exercise those freedoms.


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    Well said. I totally agree.

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ANNANN63 7/4/2010 1:09PM

    Right on!

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Friday, July 02, 2010

Some of us have loved ones who are deployed.

Some of us have loved ones who have given much of their lives for our country.

Some of us have loved ones who have given their LIFE for our country.

Some us just live here and are grateful for that.

No matter which you are, I wish you and all your loved ones a happy, healthy and safe FOURTH OF JULY weekend!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon


And HAPPY CANADA DAY to our Canadians friends and allies! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Have a great Independence Day!!!

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ACIMPEGGY 7/2/2010 1:22PM

    Thank you, Karen. I agree wholeheartedly!

emoticon emoticon

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PJSTIME 7/2/2010 1:15PM

    Thanks Karen.

God Bless America and all our troops and veterans too.


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KOOCH4 7/2/2010 12:47PM

what a beautiful reminder of how lucky we are to live in this free country.
I have 3 nephews who are deployed.
A big salute to all of our boys who help keep us free emoticon emoticon emoticon
We always keep them in our prayers.
Have a blessed , meaningful 4 th of July

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NANCY- 7/2/2010 11:32AM

    My wish is the same for you and yours.

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JEANNE229 7/2/2010 9:10AM

    Karen, what a wonderful tribute to independence day! I, too, wish everyone (deployed or not) a saft and happy day to remember what is important in life!


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ANNANN63 7/2/2010 9:08AM

    God Bless America and all who have sacrificed to keep her safe and free. This is the best place in the world to live and I appreciate that I am here.

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KAYYVAUGHN 7/2/2010 8:40AM

    I agree with all that you said. If we don't have family members fighting for us, we have friends. There are so many on our church list.
Let's keep them all in our prayers.

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