Thursday, October 22, 2009

Calm after Crisis

I really don't want to be writing this. Every time I think about it, I feel a little funny and want to put it off, but really, there's nothing that dramatic going on....just me not wanting to think about this past week, that's all....

My mom....she is responding to the antibiotics and is starting to make sense. Last night she stayed in her apartment without DH or me staying with her, so that was good. It's not so good, though, that she's still having anxiety issues and is still thinking that she is covered with poop, or hair or whatever, when she very clearly isn't. She has an appointment with the Dr. on Nov. 7, so we'll see if maybe he can increase some of her anti-anxiety meds so that she isn't so worried.


Still in the psych hospital. I'm still angry with her, but I'm starting to calm down. This is the longest I've ever stayed angry with her. Tomorrow, though, we have a family counseling session at the hospital, so maybe we can work on some things there. Like I need another appointment to go to. (Yep, I'm resentful, too)....anyhow, we're doing that and I'll let you all know how it goes.

I read all your comments about this stuff and I wanted to just respond a little--I am starting to recognize that the hospitalization itself will be a good enough consequence for DD. She is missing out on her visit(s) with bio mom, which is what her tantrum was designed to avoid. Plus, she is missing my nephew's 3rd birthday party on Saturday. She loves my two nephews, and her favorite thing is to go over to their house and play with all their toys with them. So the fact that she is missing that because she did something stupid and can't leave the hospital, that's a natural consequence, too. So I'm feeling much less inclined to come up with any other consequences. Thanks everyone, you were right.

I guess what I need to say is that what it all boils down to is love. And maybe that's something that God wants me to learn. Loving someone isn't just taking the good times and handing the problem(s) off to someone else when it's not so fun any more....and that's the case with my mom, with DD, and, with DH, too. For me, there isn't any question of whether my mom goes into a nursing home, or DD goes into a group home or whatever.

The genuine truth of the matter is, that probably someday my mom will HAVE to go to a more skilled residence. But until that becomes the only option, I will do everything that is within my power to help her avoid that. She's been in her apartment for nearly four years now. No question about it, it's home to her. And her cat, which she'd have to give up if she moved. The staff at the assisted living feel confident that they can meet her needs (with a little help from the family), so I will do whatever I can to make sure that she has the best possible quality and quantity of life.

And probably DD will end up living in a residential group home after she finishes school. It's becoming more and more apparent that unless she gets some huge benefits from this hospitalization, she will not be able to live on her own without significant supports. But right now, I'm her mom, and my job is to keep her safe, teach her skills that will benefit her, and love her. Even when it's harder than I ever imagined. I can't tell you the number of people at work and elsewhere who told me this past week to "get rid of her, she'll be nothing but trouble" etc. Would they say that if she was my bio child? Based on some of the people who've said these kinds of things (relatives), I just don't think so. Because although I don't have bio children, I suspect that my love for her is pretty similar to that.

A lot of bad things happened when DH got sick. And I admit, I still kind of hold a grudge regarding some of those things. But I love him and have stuck it out this far. It's the same principle.

And isn't it sad that every family member that I love so much has a significant mental health issue? That's why I named this blog what I did, by the way....with DD, DH, my mom, and the people I work with at the group home(s), sometimes I wonder what a "normal" person is really like.....

I love my family. And I'm in it for the long haul. But I might complain a lot.


perphila said...

What is normal?

I'm glad your mom was able to stay out of the hospital. It was a tough call to make. I hope she doesn't have any major set backs from this. You are doing an amazing job.

DD's stay at the hospital may hopefully be a good thing. It has given you a chance to step back and center yourself. DH too. I know he was very stressed as well. That certainly isn't going to help his situation either. It never crossed my mind for you to send DD away. Her stay though is a good break for all of you and she is in a safe environment where you don't have to worry. You can think about things for her long term. I know you have people and supports in place for her where you can have these conversations. She is still young. Maybe this situation can be a turning point in some ways for her.

Your love for your family always shine through no matter if you feel hurt or sad or complain a little. You wouldn't be human if you didn't have these feelings.

Miz Kizzle said...

I don't think enrolling a child in a group home means that you're "getting rid of" her and more than sending a child off to college means that you're getting rid of them. In both cases these is contact, sometimes frequent contact depending on distance and the young adult's desire for independence.
As for your mother's living arrangement, you've written that on occasion she has left her apartment and been unable to remember how to get back. On at least one occasion she was unable to find the bathroom in her apartment. That made me wonder if she is safe where she's living now.
I don't think that placing an elderly relative in a nursing home is the same as "getting rid of them." It is often the best solution for working families who need to find a place where a loved one with Alzheimer's can be well cared for without the fear of wandering away or lying injured without anyone realizing they need help.
I hope things get better for you, your mother and your DD.