Monday, October 25, 2010

Life as we know it has changed Pt. 1

Remember this guy?

I talked about him here, here and here.

For those of you who remember the stories, I wont bore you with telling them again & if you don't remember, just pop back over & read them before reading on.

So, I haven't written in a while because since I've been away at school and haven't been in the midst of it, it kind of has slipped my mind. I mean, I thought of him often and my mom would give me updates but I didn't have anything really compelling to write about so I didn't.

Little did I know, that was a good thing.

About a month or two ago, Granddad was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia. The doctor described it as the worst symptoms of Alzheimer's combined with the worst symptoms of Parkinson's. He said that Lewy Body patients are extremely combative and usually, "move around a lot", meaning that he would be kicked out of a lot of nursing homes. Unlike a normal Alzheimer's patient, doctors cannot tell what stage Lewy Body patients are in and how they will progress. It's kind of a wait, see, hope & pray thing. It was a total freakin' nightmare diagnoses basically.

Despite the horrific diagnosis, Granddad had done pretty well with only a few minor outbursts every week or so. When he would have an outburst, the nursing home would give him a pill, he would sleep for a couple of hours and then be fine again.

Fast forward to Fall Break. I went & saw him. I knocked on the door & he answered with a big, "Hey Baby!" He had not slept much the night before though, and I was still feeling pretty puny, so we decided to take a nap. It's a weird thing, but it felt so awesome to take a nap in his room. He slept in his chair & I slept on his bed, but for the first time in a long time, it felt like I had a "normal" grandparent again. Whatever normal is. His therapy nurse came in & woke us up so I left so that he could do therapy. I saw him the next day when we brought him some new clothes & he was sitting at the lunch table with his friends & asked for another one of the sweater vests. He was doing great.

Last week, my mom had conferences in Indianapolis so she was out of town & she had written that in his charts but of course, as soon as she left, the nursing home started calling. The first nurse began by asking if my mom was going to make it to a meeting that she was supposed to be at - she had forgotten & asked if she could reschedule. Then, the nurse told her that Granddad had gotten a little out of control that night. Annoyed, my mom told her that she was out of town & that she had written that in his chart.

It was only an hour later when the nursing home called again & said that well, they had gotten it wrong the first time - he had gotten really bad before - he had scratched one of the nurses & someone was going to need to stay with him all night. Again, my mom told them that she was out of town & they would need to try to call my uncle. They said okay & that they would have two women stay in there for the night but they would charge $20 an hour.

Before the night ended, Mom called and asked how he was doing. He was resting, they said. Mom asked if the ladies were staying with him & they said no but he was okay. WTF??

In the morning, she called again to check on him. Again, they said that he was resting but told Mom that they had taken the legs off of his bed. You know, so he wouldn't hurt himself. So, my mom said, he can't walk then? That's right, the nurse said. She said they had been giving him Klonopin, a very dangerous drug, every 4 hours. They couldn't allow for him to come out of this slumber. And, oh by the way, he needed be taken to a behavioral center right away. He was too much of a risk to have in their facility. They were kicking him out .... {To Be Continued}

No comments: