21 June 2011

Vascular Dementia

The lack of oxygen to the brain is a serious problem.  Whatever the reason for the lack of oxygen, the result is not good.  In our case, a softball sized tumor in the lung is pretty much blocking the efficient flow of oxygen, and has been for an unknown period of time.

Dementia, however, is kind of the same whether it's vascular, Alzheimer's, or any one of the other dementias, especially the age related kind.

Weese, if you are reading, I thought about you last night.

I was over at the parents house, they had just finished a light supper of blintzes.  We were talking about how my martial art school looked better after a recent coat of paint.  At that point my mom said, "Well, I remember when you told me that the rabbits were really loud at night."

Umm.... ok.

I said, "We don't have too many rabbits over there, but if they keep you awake, let me know."

What is it about rabbits?  Weese, didn't your mom have a rabbit thing?


8thdayplanner said...

Yep, I continue to sit with you, sharing that tea, and our sadness.

Prayers ascending.


weese said...

yeah i'm here....
yup yup.
let's see - she said one day while looking around the room "now what are we going to do about all these rabbits".
this incident escalated and she did eventualy become very aggitated until i finally hired someone with a truck to come get them. that worked well. we had them taken to a rabbit farm. it only took about an hour or so.

We found the best thing was to simply let the conversation flow naturally.
If furniture was flying around the front yard I might remark..."my, how often that seems to happen in October"
or when she confessed to killing a small horse, we comforted her by telling her sometimes you just have to get rid of those little ones (while rubbing haldol gel into her wrists of course).
It can be hard to watch...but don't let it be too hard. just be there for her, be in that crazy moment with her, and talk to her like any other day. mostly try to keep her calm and let her know everything - no matter how freaky - is normal.
my thoughts are with you.
i will think good bunny thoughts.

weese said...

oh and, I never heard of this type of dementia. Interesting really.
No one had any real good explantion for my mom's. and since her prognosis was weeks - there were no tests. Just guesses.

the only daughter said...

That is a very interesting commonality, the rabbits. Hmmm..

Weese gives good tips. I don't know what my mom's future holds, but I'm preparing for a similar kind of journey, given family history and am reading (and followed Weese's mom's journey) with great interest and absorption.

Keeping and and sending good thoughts still and always for you all.

eb said...

I'm not sure what's worse, knowing or not knowing. My mom died suddenly - talked to her on a Tuesday, got the call three days later. No long goodbyes but also didn't have to watch her slowly 'leave'. So yes, good thoughts for the long journey ahead. When things go according to the laws of nature (as we think they should), outliving our parents is inevitable.

Did your mom smoke? Mine did, she didn't have lung cancer but I know it contributed to her early death at age 60. Have you seen the pictures they're putting on cigarettes now? It's kind of freaky, I'm not sure it will get people to stop smoking, but it sure might persuade anyone to not start.

eb said...

Also... are you familiar with the blog '37 Days' by Patti Digh. If not, I highly recommend it. She has become a good friend of ours (even flew down to Houston for my 50th birthday party). But she writes so eloquently about life and death and all the things in between.


Grumpy Granny said...

As my father was dying, he talked about a "Greenskeeper". He never played golf, but my grandfather (his dad) was avid. I wondered if he was actually seeing his father? Despite all the sadness and the aching, the disconnection process is also fascinating. Simply accepting that they do see what they say they see is comforting.

Thinking of you,