New Tuesday routine

Well, I think I will be stopping at Mom’s every Tuesday morning until she moves to the nursing home. That is shower day, and I have decided I need to pick out an outfit for her to be changed into after her shower. Last week, I gave her a new outfit on Monday, she was showered Tuesday morning, and the same clothes were put back on her. I don’t get that, but I don’t know all the rules, either. With my new role as dresser, I need to stop by more frequently to make sure she is at least a little bit freshened. Otherwise, I’m sure she’d wear the same clothes, socks, bra and disposable underwear included, for an indefinite period of time.

I arrived at about 8:30 a.m. People were just coming out of breakfast. Mom wasn’t in the dining room. One of her friends said hi to me and also asked me if I was in the wrong place. I thought that was interesting – does she know something Mom doesn’t know about the upcoming move??? Or does the friend have cognitive problems, too? I think that is it, actually. I went to Mom’s apartment and she was dozing on the bed, fully clothed, including the red fleece jacket I took off of her last week. I asked her if she had breakfast, but she didn’t remember. I later learned, when I was leaving, that she had been at breakfast, which begins at 8. So she had eaten, returned to her room, fallen asleep and forgotten she had had breakfast within a half-hour.

I changed the cat food – another thing that means more visits to Mom’s. Which is OK. I also need to take him to the vet, I am sure. Something I am clearly avoiding. He just doesn’t seem himself. I combed him. I told Mom I was picking out an outfit for her. She wasn’t very talkative – was probably drowsy. She did talk about pooping a little bit. Said it was “time to get some poop.” She returned to the toilet a little later, saying she was finding more poop, but she only peed. I am wondering if she is beginning to be confused about those sensations and what they mean. Poor Mom.

Despite this, she seemed reasonably content. I told her I couldn’t stay long, that I had to go to work. “Oh, you’re leaving already?” she said. That was like a little stab to my heart. But also a fair thing to say, as since the outings with my sister, I haven’t spent much prolonged time with her. “I’m really grateful for all of your help,” she also said. I told her she doesn’t have to thank me. But I also thanked her for thanking me.

Later today, I chatted on Facebook with a friend living in South Africa. She moved onto my street when we were about 10 or 12 and we became fast friends. We didn’t attend the same schools and eventually we drifted and lost track of each other as adults. At any rate, we have rediscovered each other. We were talking about animals and I mentioned the cat and we eventually got onto the subject of my mother. She said she could not imagine my mom with this disease. And that it was so sad. And that is so true. And I imagine her memories of my mom are fuzzy, or minimal, as Mom wasn’t particularly social with my friends as far as I can remember. And I spent much more time at this friend’s house than she did at mine, by far. I hope my friends who knew Mom have decent memories of her. She wasn’t around a lot. She was kind of quiet. But she wasn’t mean or anything. She could be funny. She liked to laugh.

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