The first part of January my mother had a brain bleed. We really aren't sure if it was caused by a fall, or if it caused the fall. My intuition tells me that it caused the fall. She spent 3 days in the hospital, and hated every minute. She wasn't eating in the hospital, and wasn't cooperating, so finally they decided there was nothing more they could do for her. The doctor asked if I wanted to send her to a care center, or take her home. I told him to let me take her home, because maybe she would eat at home.
When I brought my Mom home, I handed her a sandwich and she started eating. She has gradually improved since then. She is doing so much better, and I'm sure the doctor would be surprised to see her.
I am, however, getting an education about head injuries. When my Mom first came home, she became extremely anxious. She was pacing the floor, ranting and trying to escape. Having never dealt with a head injury before, I didn't know what to expect. Her speech was jibberish for quite awhile. I thought it was her dementia, but have since learned that it is a result of the head injury. She was saying things like, "We have to go and repentilaty, laty, laty." And "I want to fissy wissy beddy shoddy." I really think she thought she was communicating, but I was clueless about what she meant. She has just recently stopped saying nonsense words, although she still has trouble finding words sometimes. Here are a few funny things that she has done lately:
--She washed the dishes one night while I was out. I had my son sitting with her, and he texted me to tell me what she was doing. I told him to just let her. The next day I found a lot of dirty dishes in the drainer, and clean dishes put away in weird places. Like, a loaf pan was in the utensil drawer.
--Last night she asked for some salt to salt her rice. I handed her the salt shaker. I looked back just in time to see her taking the lid off of it! I think she would have ended up with a lot more salt than she intended!
--We went to the thrift store, and she found a couple of small things she liked. I think the total was $3. She worried that she couldn't afford it, and didn't have enough money to buy them. I told her she has plenty of money. She reached around in her purse. Suddenly she said, "How much of these do I need to pay for them?" She was holding a handful of pens.....
--She has different therapists coming to the house: speech therapy, occupational therapy, and physical therapy. She also has an aide to help her shower twice a week. I have noticed that she has a lot of tricks up her sleeve to get out of doing what they want her to do! She can find all kinds of distractions to stop doing the exercises, or to get around doing what they want. For example, the speech therapist will ask her to list certain things (to see what words she remembers). She asked her to name as many colors as she could. My mother was struggling to remember the words for colors, so said,"Who cares?!" And boy does she sass them!
--She told me she wanted to call my sister to ask her to take her to her home and live with her there. I told her she couldn't go live with her because she has her own family. Finally I let her call her, and my sister told her for herself. Then just the other day she said she needed to call her sister. I finally deduced that she meant daughter. She said, "No, she is my sister! First there was her, then me." I said, "No, you are thinking of your sister Reva." She said, "Oh yea, that's right." But then she flipped again and was calling my sister her sister again. I told her again she has her own family. My Mom said, "No she doesn't." I reminded her of my sister's husband's name. She remembered him, but didn't remember they were married. I said, "Yes, they got married a long time ago." She said, "Well why didn't they invite me to their wedding!" Lol.
--Today it was snowing and my Mom said, "Look at the water coming down!" All day she had trouble thinking of the word for snow.
I really can't complain though. It's so much nicer to have her more back to normal. She isn't ranting or trying to escape any more. She isn't talking jibberish anymore. She can feed herself and take care of bathroom needs. The one thing that I hope will improve is her stamina. She gets tired much more quickly than before. But my sister brought a wheel chair, so we could always use that.
The more I deal with my mother, the more I realize how lucky my Dad was that he died quickly. He had no warning, and just had a couple of chest pains before he died. He wasn't bed-ridden. He didn't have to go through cancer treatments. He didn't have to have someone else bathe or feed him. He could still communicate. He could still walk, and was living in his own home with his wife up until his death. I hope that when my mother dies she has just an easy of a passing.