A Visit With Al


al's birthday partyToday I went to see Al. He was hard to wake up for lunch. It took several times calling him then finally an eye opened. He never even knew I had been sitting there for sometime. We had lunch together and then they weighed him.

He has lost another six pounds. The nurse said this wasn’t bad at all. I tend to disagree with her. How many weeks is he going to continue to lose a few or more pounds a week before they do anything. Or is there anything to do about it.

He only cried once during lunch which I thought was real good. He cried while he told me some new staff was working. They were in his room and the experienced staff were telling him some things so that Al would continue to get good care.

Al said,”They were talking about my past. Everyone wanted to know all the bad stuff about me. They even told them that I wet in my pants.” I explained that they were just informing the new girls of important things about him so he wouldn’t have to stay in wet pants very long.

He didn’t like it so I asked the girls if they could discuss things about him out in the hall where he can’t hear them. Al has always been so sensitive about himself. He isn’t proud that he wets himself or spills food or any other thing that he didn’t used to do.

I wish there was some type of brace to hold Al’s chin or head up. Today I swear his chin was an inch from his plate. He still struggled to get food in his mouth. He ate his whole meal in this position. It makes my neck hurt just seeing his drooped. I guess this is part of the Parkinson’s Disease.

He went out on an outing after lunch so I hope he had a good time. I talked to the waiver people today and the guy told me he was hoping to have all of Al’s data entered by Friday afternoon. I am to call back and check on Friday, late. He also said that once the State received it they legally have 45 days to sign it but it could be back in a week’s time. So I just reminded him that we had been working on this since the beginning of March, so this is why Al is so upset. The guy asked me why I don’t put him on antidepressants. I said, why, he is only sad because he isn’t home yet. Silence, and then call me back Friday. I will for sure, he can bank on it.

27 thoughts on “A Visit With Al

  1. This is really heartbreaking and touching. Al is really lucky to have you in his life. My grandfather had Parkinson’s disease and passed away when I was in my early teens. I wish I could of been there for him more.

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  2. Lovely to see a photo of Al enjoying himself. I wouldn’t worry too much about Al losing weight, as he looks fine in this photo. It’s not as though he looks skinny and under-nourished.

    It’s very hard for one to be the perfect weight when life is mainly sedentary.

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  3. I am glad you are such an advocate for him. It is sad what we do to our handicapped, elderly and misfortunate members of society. I am Ombudsman for York County PA and would recommend that to anybody to get involved. Just volunteering doesn’t give you the “authority” to change things for the “inmates”. As Ombudsman one gets trained by the Dep of Aging and is not employed, so they can’t fire you. You can visit the places you are assigned to any time and make a difference for the people, because the care places are aware that the report we give has weight. Some conditions how people have to live are horrible and all modern medicine can do is sedate people. Do they not realize our elderly people have feelings, a heritage and a back ground? Those people send their children to college at a great sacrifice, just so that their children are so busy in their carriers to love their parents. Little do those “career buffs” realize how soon THEY will be in their parents shoes.
    In my opinion there is ALWAYS a better alternative than a nursing home, even for Parkinson and Dementia patients.

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  4. it is a bad habit in the medical community to talk about patients as though they can’t hear you. it isn’t intentional but hurtful and deminishing just the same. i just hope things go as well as you hope when he gets home. do you have help lined up? i seem to remember that being a problem before. i am sure you both must be very excited and frustrated at the big move and having to wait.

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    • this time when he comes home it is through a waiver program. in the budget the state has prepared includes up to 50 hours of help here at home, so this should be taken care of. There are two companies lined up to be here. Al is so sensitive about himself. The girls weren’t saying anything so bad it is just they were talking about things that bother Al, such as the wet pants

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      • i am so relieved to hear you are going to get more help! maybe it makes this all worth it in the end.

        al is so lucky to have you watching over him and i hope you will have some peace of mind soon.

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      • the help that is guaranteed will make things easier in so many ways. I hope this all works out because all I want is Al to be comfortable

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