Aster from Mississippi
My mother was found sitting in her backyard by her next door neighbor. My brother was called as well as 911. She was taken to the hospital. She was diagnosed with dementia - Alzheimer's full blown. The doctor stated she could no longer live alone and putting her in a assisted living facility was not an option at this time due to her wishes. My sister and brothers and I agreed that I would move in with my mom. After calling my husband, he backed me staying with her. You must understand that I lived about 330 miles from my mom. My sister lived 3000 miles away and was still working, although my brothers were within 50 miles away, they were still working and they said they wouldn't know how to care for her. I move in with her. I took care of grocery shopping, bill paying, banking, taking her to the doctor, managing her medication as well as cleaning, cooking and laundry duties. The doctor informed me that there is no cure at this time and she would continue to decline. There were home health services, however by the time they made their rounds, I had finished bathing and feeding mama her breakfast. I slept with one eye open and both ears listening for any movement at night, no day nap as she did not nap. As a caregiver for my mom, I made sure she was cared for and happy. The doctor said that with her being in her own surroundings, would have a positive effect on her. I would take care of her every need. I did not eat healthy and ended up losing 23lbs. I am diabetic with high blood pressure and often times missed my medication timely but made sure she took hers. My mother would ask for my father and I told her he was deceased which she did not believe me. She would talk to him at night, which would cause me to get up continuously through the night. I was tired and often depressed. I went home one weekend per month and used a sitter service to stay at the home. My mother's finances were in good order, therefore we did not have the financial problems many families have. Thanks to my mother's neighbor Myra, I had someone to talk to and give me encouragement. There were days of loneliness and wanting to just give up. But this was my mom and I was dedicated to taking care of her. The time came that she had a light stroke and I called the nurse who came to take care of her, there was no need to go to the hospital. Then there was a time I was feeding her a banana her favorite food, she was holding it in her hand and not biting it, she was having another stroke. 911 was called and she was taken to the hospital. I was not able to care for her anymore due to the physical needs, she went from the hospital directly to a nursing facility. It was hard to do that, but this now was the best facility for her needs. My mother passed away there. I did not want to put her in a facility, but I had to do the best thing for her knowing I was unable to do so. Being a caregiver is one of the hardest job to do. I didn't see it as a job, but a labor of love. Even though it took a toll on me, I would do it all over again. By the way, my husband, three sons, a nephew and I moved into my mother-n-laws's home to take care of her due to cancer on the brain. Taking care of my mom was not my first go around as a caregiver. I applaud anyone who is a caregiver. This person is a loving, kind, gentle and caring individual. My hat is off to you.