Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Thursday Thirteen ed 14

Thirteen Things about Alzheimers Residents

Thank you to Casa Sosegad for the header!

I work in an Alzheimers Dementia Care Unit and I adore the residents I work with. Especially when they come up with witty comments, interesting comebacks, and compliments. If you have a relative with Alzheimers this list might not be for you, as it is sad to see your loved one go downhill, but for the caregivers and nurses these comments make us smile. We only know the person after they have Alzheimers so we can love them where they are at, without the feeling of loss.

Witty Comments:

1…. "I don't need a bath" (odor indicates otherwise)

2. "I haven't had anything to eat all day" (after exiting the dining room and eating a full meal)

3. "We haven't met have we" (I have talked to this one everyday for 2 years about the news, weather etc)

4. "Can I come in?" (means can I come sit by you and keep you company)

5. "Its nice to lose your mind cause each day brings new things" (said to office staff one morning)

Resident: "I want a pumpkin" Staff: "look in your bag" Resident: "Wow how did that get in there?" (at the pumpkin patch after picking pumpkins)


7.. "Am I supposed to be impressed?" (after my husband sang to them to decrease the sundowners) (sundowners happens usually in the evening when the sun is going down and the residents get more restless and more confused)

8. "If I wanted you to speak I would have thrown you a bone" (after asking a resident where she was hurting)

9. "I have a right to get up and walk and I have a right to fall" (from a former nurse and she is right. It's in the Residents Bill of Rights)

Compliments: (I received a lot of compliments as a nurse in hospital and home settings but never as many as I do now. Heres a small sampling)

10. "Thank you pretty girl" (everyday after I ask how a certain lady is doing)

11. "Did you give that shot already? I didn't even feel a thing" (after almost every injection I give)

12. She is
THE NURSE (Said from one resident to another as if I am the Queen of England)

BEST EVER comment:

13. My all time favorite "I thank God everyday that I do not have Alzheimers" (Spoken by an Alzheimers resident to her table mates who also have Alzheimers)

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Wylie Kinson said...

Great list - and kudos to you for choosing a profession where you can make such a wonderful difference in people's lives!

My TT is about what I'd do if I ruled the world - and I specifically call for nurses to make more money than pro baseball players! And your list is the reason why!!

Janie Hickok Siess, Esq. said...

OMG, I can't tell you how much I admire you. My mother had Alzheimer's and spent the last 2+ years completely helpless. She didn't know who we were and could not carry on a conversation. She also ate only pureed food which sent my sister off the cliff (she just couldn't look at it or even think about feeding her . . .she had a visceral reaction). Every time we went to visit, we'd drive away saying, "Oh, thank God for those people taking care of her" because we could not have done it.

Funny story: One time while she was still somewhat lucid and ambulatory, she pointed to the picture of her with my father on their 50th anniv. and said, "That's the guy I was dating." My sister and I said, "Yes, we know. He was our father." She turned to my sister and said, "No! He was not! We didn't have any children!"

All we could do was laugh. Otherwise we would have cried.

I have a couple of posts about her and saying good-bye on my blog. Drop by!

Rashenbo said...

That would be such a difficult job for me. I just don't think I could do it. You really brought a smile to my lips with this lip though. Hehehe, you make them all sound so wonderful.

Cheers and have a lovely Thursday.

Rose said...

I would not be able to do it. Kudos to you. I enjoyed the list.

stacitee said...

I like the last comment best. I bet if I had alzheimers I'd be saying that too... "Every day I thank God I don't have alzheimers!"

Qtpies7 said...

Thats a great list! I love #13! My grandpa had Alz. I was sad, but sometimes it was funny the things he would come up with.

Janie Hickok Siess, Esq. said...

Pam, by all means if you want to share my post, feel free to do so. I hope it is helpful to someone. I just wrote what I felt at the time. My feelings haven't changed. That wave of grief never came. And I've resigned myself to the fact that it never will. I just take comfort in the fact that my mother is still here . . . in this house that she built and cared for all those years. In the roses she planted that are still by the front step. She's not gone; she's just away.

Blessings to you as you go about your daily work with your patients. You are doing something so important . . . I hope that your employer, your patients and their families appreciate you.

Crystal said...

I enjoyed your list. I admire you... what a tough job!

Robyn Mills said...

It is easy to see why you do what you do. Great TT

It's Me, Maven... said...

I loved the irony of #13.

Good list!

You and folks like you who obviously enjoy your work are blessings to your residents and their families.

Moxie said...

Oh man, that gave me a good laugh. When Grandma L was going through Alzheimer's, my grandpa would keep out photos of family and friends to help her remember. If someone had died, he would point to their picture and say, "He's dead now." When I went to see her, she showed me a picture of my great-uncle and said, "He's dead, you know." Even now I say that about someone who is long gone, just as a shout-out to Grandma.