Today is the fateful day I must break the news to her. A day that would at least for me change my entire future of her care.
When I arrived at Manor Care, I parked as far I could from the front door. I really needed that walk to take some breaths and prep myself. As I entered I ran into the social worker who apparently had been just visiting Gram. She asked if we could talk a few moments about Gram. We took the little admissions office of to the right of the waiting area. She said the visit with Gram was a bit awkward and emotional. I could feel all my self prep work was just going up in smoke. I asked her why was she emotional. Well, the social worker apparently was discussing living options with Gram. Places she could go that had better facilities for her needs. I asked the social worker. What and why are you doing this? I haven’t even told her the news about her future. And you are already discussing where she is going next. So what exactly does Gram think about this moving to another facility. Did you tell her that she cannot go home? She said, it was her job to find and place residents in other facilities according to their need. And since Gram does not qualify to stay at Manor Care any longer. She had to get on task as there are others that need Gram’s bed. I laughed. Really, she covered by her medical for six months here at Manor Care. So the rush is for the bloody birds. But, before we continue. You still haven’t answered my question about whether she knows that she is not going home. My heart dropped, because the social worker told Gram that she could not ever go home. I oddly felt relieved, but, I knew it was going to be even worse. I gathered myself, and looking very annoyed, told her I will not have you near my Gram. And that you need to find a replacement for yourself to deal with me. Because I am not dealing with you either. I will expect a call by the end of day to move things forward. I got up and walked away without even a goodbye.
I walked outside and had a smoke.
Composed again, I walk back in and head first to the nurses station. Looking around, I ask is the head nurse available. I waited only a few minutes and noticed she was moving at a fast pace from down the long hallway towards me. What do you need Neall she asks in a very very professional manner, borderline robotic. I told her what the wanker social worker had done and that we will need something to calm her down. And that with her heart issues, I was concerned she might have a heart attack or do something hurtful to herself. Side tidbit She only ever once made note that she would take her life, while never about losing her home, she did mention due to certain medical reasons. So my need to get something to keep her calm. Which I stressed to the nurse. I do not want her sitting there drooling, but instead calm and able to discuss things. So she did her thing of contacting the doctor and had an answer in barely ten minutes. But, that it would be a couple of hours before the medication arrived. I thanked her and started towards Gram’s room.
Entering, she was sitting on the edge of her bed facing the window, crying. I went to give her a hug. And she held her hand out to stop me. She just looked up at me with tears streaming down her cheeks. What did you do Neall? Why are you having me shipped off to the loony bin? How could you hate me so much? What did I do to make you hate me? …Then she just raised her voice get out get out, I don’t want to see you. What an absolutely horrible person you are. Just get away from me. I just turned and walked out.
I lost my composure and headed for the bathroom.
Regaining some of it back. I went to the administrator’s office. And told her from this day forth. She is to make sure I am informed of all visit and changes to Gram’s care and what just happened from the moment I entered the building. And that I was contacting the Office on Aging about this incident. Especially, since the social worker that started today’s debacle actually works for Manor Care. I just turned away and left.
Arriving home with tears running down both my cheeks now. I was just beside myself. As Gram has never in my life spoke to me that way. I kept thinking what exactly did that social worker say. I just could not stay focused on anything. So I went to my room and just cried for a long while. A few hours had passed, about three. The phone rings and I didn’t answer it, but a roommate of mine did. They said it is your Gram. My heart and stomach flipped. Taking a deep breath, I said hello Nan. She said, I thought you were coming into visit me today. I just found the closest chair and sat. I said, I was just about ready to pop in. Maybe we could pop out and get some ice cream. She said, Oh that does sound yummy, since supper here is was like chewing on some soggy cardboard. I said get yourself ready and I will be in to get you.
I arrived, she was not dressed to go. She was sleepy and had forgotten I was coming in. So I just gave her a hug and said I would be in tomorrow.
The next day, I went in and talked to her about needing to go to assisted living. It was met with understanding, though she was not totally happy with the idea. She admitted, she cannot quite get around like she needs too and could not do steps right now. I was quietly relieved, though apprehensive of what might happen next.
A quick tibit. Over the next two weeks with the aid of Office on Aging, we found The Haven at Springwood. They agreed to take Gram’ on her very limited income (well, sort of, but, that is another story).
Thus ends the Aftermath.
What can you take away from this? Again, stay on top of as much as you can. But, learn everything you can on dealing with Dementia. It is an emotional roller coaster from hell.
Miss You Gram
Lots of Love
Your Grandson – Neall