Good Morning

**Disclaimer: This blog definitely does NOT give any medical or financial advice.

 

Woke up feeling good on this Sunday morning on the East Coast…not the heaviness I sometimes feel from depression over Mom’s condition. It’s a new morning; yesterday was a good day for Mom and I told her that, she needs reminders.

Today my husband and I are married 32 years, but because yesterday was a good day and I was in a good place, emotionally, we celebrated our anniversary at a local Italian restaurant last night. It was so very delicious. We had baked clams and we each had a shrimp dish; mine with risotto and pancetta and my husband’s with linguini and spinach. I ordered their calve’s liver veneziana to go and will give mom a small portion of that today for her dinner.  Many years ago I had the real thing in Venice…so many years ago.

Tomorrow mom and I will visit the new gastro dr and let him go over her ulcerative colitis history (I’ve typed it up for him) and let’s just listen to what he has to say. I reassured mom we’re just getting a 2nd opinion…he may agree with her current gastro dr…he may not…all decisions are up to us. I’m not looking for anyone to do any invasive testing!!!!  

Yesterday I bought mom a very sweet and delicious cheese danish which she requested. She ate some of it and will probably consume the rest today. I made sure she had an egg for protein at breakfast time.  I know that if I remain calm, it helps mom remain calm.  It’s a new morning and I’m hoping for another good day!

Having No Answers

**Disclaimer: This blog does not give any medical or financial advice.

 

I have no answers when it comes to really knowing exactly what to do for mom. I’m just doing the best I can. Am I doing right by her?  That’s a question that sometimes weighs heavily on my heart and on my mind. I woke up a bit depressed this morning and working it off through this posting and then I’ll exercise.

I’ve read and researched Ulcerative Colitis (UC) and I’ve been trying to plan meals according to the research. Her gastro dr. says she can eat anything. Other drs say follow a low residue (low fiber) diet. We have been doing the low residue diet and adding things back in.

She’s been on the new med 2 weeks, really no difference. Her gastro dr says it takes 2-4 weeks to kick in. Mom has never been a thin woman, but she has really lost weight, about 16lbs since end of April. She is 90 and a half years old. It’s been hard trying to get her outside, but that really has a lot to do with needing the bathroom nearby, quite understandable.

Anyone out there have experience with UC?  Any suggestions?  I’m not switching gastro drs….Mom likes him, he has a good reputation and so far, I don’t dislike him.

August 7th, we’ll let her cardio/internist know everything when we see him for her scheduled appt. I so hope the bloodwork that we’ll do on Tuesday has her numbers within normal range.

Yesterday when I walked through the park for the 2nd time, one of the park workers asked me how my mom was doing. I told him and he applauded me for making sure mom lives at home. That’s her desire, that’s my desire.

Hoping for a better day today and that I shake off this depression. Going to exercise now, that should help. Not listing a menu, cause I have no answers.

Keeping a Positive Attitude

**Disclaimer: This blog does not give any medical or financial advice.

 

When I can get mom to go outside, then that is a better day. It’s harder and harder to get her outside and having ulcerative colitis really hinders her desire to want to go out and that is quite comprehensible. This morning I tried, but she was exhausted from the condition.

Just talked with her on the phone now and I can always tell when she’s distracted (the TV was on) and her comprehension was a little off, not a lot, just a little. Many times, my daughter and I tell her to mute the TV when we call; sometimes she does that and other times, not. I didn’t remind her to do that now cause I wasn’t saying anything terribly important.

I am focusing on the good. Mom continues to live in her own home and get around on her own 2 feet…Hallelujah!  I walked in the park after Mom’s this morning and I also visited my little coffee shop in town and sat outside a few minutes chillaxin’ with a cappuccino.

Today’s Menu:

B: 1/2 Mini Bagel with Melted Swiss Cheese     A few slices of Peeled Cooked Apple  Decaf

L:  Finish salmon from yesterday  A Little Store bought Potato Salad   Decaf

D: 1/2 Cornish Hen     Salad   Finish Cooked Apples from Breakfast

 

Acknowledge Your Greatness as a Caregiver!!!!!

**Disclaimer: This blog does not give any medical or financial advice.

 Each stage of one’s life has its successes and rewards and it’s crucial to self-acknowledge one’s achievements, shout it from the rooftops if you want. It feels good!!!! For example…here I am a little after 10am already home from Mom’s. I was there at 7am and between 7am and 9:30am, this is what I accomplished:
-Cleaned Mom’s Home B4 she got out of bed and so did her bedroom last
-Changed her bedding
-Helped her shower
-Did usual examination of mom from head to toe…you’ll never know what you may find!
-Did usual daily massage of feet and legs
-Set out clothes for the day
-Sat and talked about what we are grateful for this morning
-Prepared breakfast
-Washed, dried laundry
-In between, I did usual things like check to see there’s a new roll of paper towels in kitchen…that there are enough rolls of toilet paper and paper towels in the bathroom, that she has enough Poland Spring bottles of water opened on her kitchen table, that enough napkins are in her napkin holder…There are so many little details to maintaining Mom’s comfort.
-Went shopping for my hubby and my meal for tonight and it will be mom’s dinner tomorrow night
-Stopped quickly at my dr.’s office to talk to secretary
This is why I wouldn’t bother having someone clean mom’s home or take care care of her: No one, absolutely NO one would see all of the details that need to be addressed. It’s all in the details on living a comfortable and safe life. I am so very happy I can do this for Mom and believe me, NO one is more grateful and appreciative than my Mom!!!! She continues to be a wonder…her intelligence, her kindness, her generosity, her love have never known any bounds.

Today’s Menu:

B: Cheddar Cheese Toast   1/3 Sliced Banana  Decaf

L:  Egg Salad Plate   Decaf

D: Thin slices of Roast Turkey Breast I had in the freezer   Leftover carrots/potatoes

Recapping Every Morning or Every Visit

**Disclaimer: This blog does not give any medical or financial advice.

 

I’ve always been a very early morning person and that continues into my life as a Caregiver for my Mom. Since the Ulcerative Colitis episode began in April, she has been up earlier than normal, so we have quite a few hours every morning together. If I get there before she rises (after having been up quite a few times to visit the bathroom), I get the coffee on, the floors swept and wiped down, the house inspected, bathroom cleaned…all before she gets up for the day. As she showers, takes meds, eats breakfast, I get a few other chores done, but constantly check on her.

I find it’s very helpful to remind mom a few times in the morning as to what her meals will be (and it is written down right on her table) and what we are thankful and/or grateful for that morning. I’m always at the top of mom’s list. I am trying hard to get her to focus on the good things. Mom has never been a complainer and she still isn’t even though she would have good reason to be.

Yesterday I broke down and let Mom have a very small wrapped package of frozen Chinese food that I had saved for her from one of my meals. She loved it!  Due to the carbs, high sodium and high glucose level in Chinese food, I really do try to keep her away from that. I realize tasty food is helpful for mom’s spirits so I also ordered a small pan pizza yesterday and wrapped each of the 4 slices individually and put into her freezer for future use, i.e.: one slice could be a lunch. There are a few things in the freezer we still have to use up; with that in mind, I also purchased a store-bought rotisseries chicken yesterday, wrapped pieces individually and also put in freezer for the future after we use up the chicken that I made and froze.  The store bought is much tastier.  Tonight my husband will make some baby lamb chops and 2 small boneless rib steaks in the cast iron skillet that I will individually wrap and put in mom’s freezer tomorrow. This way I’ll have enough cooked food for a while. Of course, when hubby and I have fish one night, we always make enough that mom will have that fish the very next night for dinner.

Thank goodness, I installed phones in Mom’s home that BLOCK unwanted calls. She just called me know and said that she must’ve received about TEN blocked calls already this morning!!!  I told her to not think about them, they’re computerized and just call randomly. Blocked calls ring only once and the Caller ID says “Blocked Caller.” One of the best investments I ever made!  I have the same phones.

It’s only 10:41 Sunday Morning as I post this…I was finished at Mom’s this morning within 2 hours. She’s now elevating her legs and watching “Meet the Press,” then she’ll read a little while, relax, etc. I am lucky Mom doesn’t get bored with being home, very lucky indeed! We are on the phone many, many times during the day and my daughter calls her Grams several times a day as well.

Today’s Menu:

B: 1 Banana    1/4 cup Special K  1% Lactaid Milk   Decaf

L:  Freshly Roasted Turkey Sandwich on 1 Slice White Bread    Iceberg Lettuce   Mustard    Decaf

D: Roast Chicken     Greenbeans

Monday’s Menu:

B: 1/2 Mini Bagel    A little Cream Cheese    1 Scrambled Egg White   A few slices Cooked Apple    Decaf

L:  Tuna Plate

D: 2 Baby Lamb Chops     Roasted Potato   Greenbeans

I’ll Take This Morning

**Disclaimer:  This blog does not give any medical or financial advice.

 

Haven’t a clue yet as to if the new med is helping mom or not, but the morning started off well. She’s not stressed out about anyone visiting and therefore can really relax and do her thing, which includes frequent visits to the bathroom. 

Last night on the phone, mom told me she ate everything I left for dinner, which surprised me, I thought some of the meatloaf slice would be left over for today’s lunch. I’m glad it wasn’t.

It’s another sticky day outside, so I know that mom is comfortable in her home that has fans and air conditioners that she has no problems putting on.

She finished all of the library books and is reading something from her bookshelf. I went to the library after Mom’s this morning and found 2 paperbacks she may enjoy. I also have books on order with the library that should be coming in for mom today or tomorrow. She likes small-sized mysteries…not too wordy with description or narratives, more dialogue. I am her Personal Librarian and do the footwork.

My husband just brought home some fresh Salmon Trout that he’ll make tonight  and I’ll be able to bring a piece over to Mom’s tomorrow morning for her dinner tomorrow night. We all love Salmon Trout, it’s a wild fish.

I’ll Take Today because, thus far, it’s very calm!

Today’s Menu:
B: One 2″ Blueberry Pancake (courtesy of my husband)   2 Scrambled Egg Whites  1 Peeled/Sliced Cooke Apple with Cinnamon    Decaf Coffee

L:  Swiss Cheese Slices over Chopped Salad with Ground Pepper and Lemon Juice

D: 1/2 Roasted Cornish Hen    Cooked Carrots and Cooked Asparagus

Low carbs in the 3 meals because Mom may have a snack…maybe a cookie…maybe a thin piece of cake from her freezer…whatever.

Focus on the Good Things

**Disclaimer: This blog does not give medical or financial advice.

 

My new line every morning when I go to Mom’s is : “Focus on all of the good things, the positive things going on” and then I’ll recap later on and say, “What was positive or good about today?”

Struggling with this Ulcerative Colitis (UC) has really worn her down and has only added to the depression that she struggles with from time to time. Yesterday we saw her gastro dr. and he switched meds and she started the new med yesterday. It will take 2-4 weeks to kick in. The new med has the same ingredient as the former med but the delivery system to the body is different. We’ll see if it helps. The dr gave us samples, which are in foil wraps and too difficult to mom to take out of the wraps. I took them home and I went to my pharmacy and they gave me a container with an ez-off cap and a blank label. My husband removed the pills from the foil wraps, put them in the container and now it will be easy for mom to access. I also redid the daily medication chart to delete old med and add new med.

I’m hoping to get mom out to walk thru the supermarket today.

Yesterday’s Menu included:

B: 1/2 Croissant,  1/2 Sliced Banana  Cream Cheese, Decaf

L: Cheddar Cheese Plate (Cheddar Cheese  Lettuce  Seedless Cuke)   Decaf

D: 1/2 Roast Cornish Hen   Cooked Carrots

Today’s Menu will include:

B: 1/2 Sliced Banana  Cereal  Decaf  2% Lactaid Milk

L: Tuna/Egg White Salad Plate (Shredded Lettuce   Seedless Cuke)  Decaf

D: 1 Slice Meatloaf  Spaghetti  Greenbeans