Thursday, April 1, 2010

Parental Woes

Right now there is a whole cluster of medical procedures scheduled for my parents. Tomorrow morning at 8:45, my mom has a CAT scan scheduled at Hoag. And I have only just realized that the mysterious notation for next Weds. at 9 AM refers to my father, who has an appointment with his urologist at UCI. But there is no point taking him there since, according to the appointment slip, he was supposed to have an ultrasound 2 weeks before the appointment and a cystoscopy (whatever that is) after that. I don't know where the order for the bloodwork he needs for the urologist or the ultrasound order might be... lost somewhere in the chaotic mess on my dining room table.
Today I took mom to get a mammogram, but she couldn't manage it. She is shaking too much and is too unsteady on her feet. The mammographer couldn't do it and says to tell the doctor to call off all future attempts to scan her this way. I think I'll tell the doctor at Hoag I want to call off future CAT scans too. It is so hard for her just to get in and out of the car. She walks as if her legs are tied together or her ankles are bound, and I am afraid she will fall and injure herself or get her hand shut in the car door again.
Meanwhile, my dad is going to pieces. He is really bored because the Center is closed until next Tuesday. In the interim, he has taken out his handsaw and begun trying to saw down the enormous gnarled wisteria vine growing against the garden wall. He claims it is dead. It isn't, but that isn't why I don't want him to do it. He has cut huge gouges in his hands and arms, and screams at everyone who tells him to stop. I have no time, absolutely none at all, to take him anywhere and entertain him. I have papers coming in next week, and have to prepare a whole new unit of lessons for the next paper.
I haven't been to yoga since Monday, and I feel like crap. I have to remind myself that all this will pass.


Lou said...

So much suffering. I hope you get a few days of rest and peace so you can regain your strength.

Robbi said...

Thank you Lou. I intend to go to yoga class Saturday afternoon in Laguna, which will be nourishing for me, and on Sunday morning too! Denise is going to have class at Mission Viejo!

Robin said...

So much parental craziness! I am sorry for both of your parents, that their quality of life is slipping away. It sounds like your dad is getting to be almost dangerous (cutting himself/ cutting vines?!) and will really have to be watched. Having had no experience with patients slipping into this distorted state, I can only pray with you that the caretakers DO have the experience and the wisdom to deal with the problems in a sane (and safe) fashion when they come up. I'm so sorry you're going through this, Robbi!

Robbi said...

Thanks Robin. The thing with my dad is that this is not something we can chalk up to old age. He has been insane much of his adult life, and everyone was afraid of him, including me. Then, when we forced him to get medicated, he was okay for a while, but with bipolar people, they have these manic periods. It is part of the illness.