Caring For An Elderly Parent: I Wrote It Down

Blog - Pic 90“This is supposed to be the time of my life – the nest is empty; but now Mom needs me.”

Here’s a little back history on my mom…. ¬†for as long as I can remember, my mom wrote notes for everything. But as she’s been ageing and beginning to lose her memory, she’s been keeping a log of her day to day events. Before she moved here she had sticky notes all around her house reminding her of every day tasks. Since she’s been living with us she hasn’t done the sticky note thing, but she does keep her note pad filled. OK, not a bad idea for remembering things – even I write things down so I don’t forget. But mom writes EVERYTHING down – the time she wakes up, when she goes to the bathroom, when she takes her meds (that’s a good one though), when and what she eats, if she hears noises, what time the lawn people come…. I mean everything!

I stopped in to see Mom when we got home from our busy day and she seemed in such a great mood. She told me she had a wonderful day and wasn’t confused of what day or time it was and everything was ticketyboo! I’m thinking, awesome! This is the way I love to see my mom. So I went in her kitchen to check her medication containers (like I always do) to make sure she had taken what was needed and I noticed that Friday’s pill was missing. Hmmm…. today is Thursday. So I questioned Mom and she said she was sure she did everything right because she wrote it down. I checked her note pad and sure enough she did write it down – unfortunately she also wrote down that today was Friday.

I explained what she had done but she didn’t want to accept the fact that she wrote the wrong day down – she even tried to blame it on her cell phone for saying the wrong day. And even though she was upset and getting angry, I let her know that it was not a big deal – I’d just move the pills around so that everything was placed right again. But that wasn’t good enough for her…. noooo. Now the reason for her writing the wrong day down was because I’m having her use the pill containers which she doesn’t like using. She never had a problem with writing things down before I made her use the containers!

Somehow I knew she was going to blame me.

Note: I got the pill containers to help Mom remember what days to take her meds. It’s also a great way for me to check that she is taking her meds properly – it obviously works for me!

What I Learned: Losing memory can be very hard for some – I know it is for Mom. I’m trying to be understanding.

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