It is 3 a.m. I am the primary caregiver of my husband. He is diagnosed with frontal temporal dementia. He lives at home and I am assisted by a program called CAPS which I qualified for thru DSS here in N.C. This program pays me for a certain number of hours a week to be my husbands caregiver. They provide a home health nurse, etc. But that is not why I am posting.
Today has been one of the days when caretaking has been real. By this I mean I have a big mess I am cleaning up in the bathroom. My husband is incontinent but often makes it to use an urinal which I empty into the toilet. He tries to make it to the toilet for bowel movements but his walking is not good and getting his shorts and depends down AND hitting the target usually ends up in a mess which is made worse by loose bowels. Forgive graphic detail please. I think being real helps me and others. So I am in the midst of that job when I hear my husband calling my name faintly. He had rolled off his bed and was on the floor in an awkward position and out of it because of his night medication and generally disoriented mind. I could not get him up because he could not help me so I put a pillow down, covered him with a blanket, remade his bed and waited until he had more strength. He is now sound asleep in bed with the rails up on both sides. He does not like those side rails but I told him it was that or he couldn’t stay home. Not being mean just safe for him and for me. We can both get hurt in lifting situations.
When he needs to get up from sitting I use a gait belt and I often help him get to his bed. At night I often feel as if I have been lifting at the gym.
So, headed back to the bathroom to finish that job. The home health nurse said it is important for me to wash my hands thoroughly after anything to do with bathroom stuff. Those type germs are very dangerous. She scared me into doing what she suggested. lol
Keeping it real here at our home means patience, grace, acceptance, prayer, taking time for me and sharing with others. Caregiving is not for sissies and I learn something new all the time. In case you think I have it together…both myself and my husband see a psychologist, we are both on antidepressants and we butt heads quite often. I have cabin fever and he often doesn’t know if it is day or night. YIKES!