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914Driver
914Driver MegaDork
12/2/17 9:37 a.m.

Sorry for your loss Fasted.  If there is a 4H near him, stop by and look around.  Make contact and then bring Dad next time.  After a very near death accident, my friend teaches kids how to tie fishing flies and lures.  Rewarding for all involved.

Pets are rather personal.

Dan

fasted58
fasted58 MegaDork
12/3/17 12:39 a.m.

We had lunch at the old diner on Friday, he hadn't been in since Mom's passing. He was back w/ his peeps again, nice folks there. We're going back for the Tuesday Special. Still kinda antsy tho, he showed up way early to pick me up plus he spread a bag of mulch I didn't notice till later. Also informed me I need coffee creamer so he can drink coffee here. We used to drink coffee and watch the Hitler Channel or college football on Saturdays before Mom needed constant care. 

He said again how he hated the nursing home but later that night he said he had a nice card from the nursing home crew. I wouldn't be surprised if he hadn't bought candy for them by now, we'll be over before Christmas I bet.  He's going to see his sister in the care home tomorrow so maybe the nursing home hate is over. I knew that place really bothered him.

He went to church last night too. I'll have to see if there are any senior groups or activities there. Good folks there too. He ordered a memorial plaque in Mom's name.

There'll be football, hockey and that oldie TV channel he likes to occupy the evening. He's not a real hobby kinda guy tho but I'll check out Hobby Lobby just in case. No computers or tablets, he doesn't even like the Bluetooth phone on the car I synced but I'll leave it on for now. Real old school.

I think he's doin' pretty good right now w/ family, friends and getting out, and doing so at his own pace. It's progress. December should be pretty busy w/ Christmas and family, play it by ear from there. I'll try to work in any ideas suggested here but like I know my Dad it usually has to be his idea but maybe we can finaggle around that. It's a good start.

I'll pick up coffee creamer tomorrow.

Thank you all for the suggestions and the condolences. Much appreciated.

 

 

Hungary Bill
Hungary Bill UberDork
12/4/17 10:21 a.m.

That post made my day.  smiley

 

Glad to hear he's up and about

759NRNG
759NRNG Dork
12/5/17 8:37 p.m.
fasted58 said:

We had lunch at the old diner on Friday, he hadn't been in since Mom's passing. He was back w/ his peeps again, nice folks there. We're going back for the Tuesday Special. Still kinda antsy tho, he showed up way early to pick me up plus he spread a bag of mulch I didn't notice till later. Also informed me I need coffee creamer so he can drink coffee here. We used to drink coffee and watch the Hitler Channel or college football on Saturdays before Mom needed constant care. 

He said again how he hated the nursing home but later that night he said he had a nice card from the nursing home crew. I wouldn't be surprised if he hadn't bought candy for them by now, we'll be over before Christmas I bet.  He's going to see his sister in the care home tomorrow so maybe the nursing home hate is over. I knew that place really bothered him.

He went to church last night too. I'll have to see if there are any senior groups or activities there. Good folks there too. He ordered a memorial plaque in Mom's name.

There'll be football, hockey and that oldie TV channel he likes to occupy the evening. He's not a real hobby kinda guy tho but I'll check out Hobby Lobby just in case. No computers or tablets, he doesn't even like the Bluetooth phone on the car I synced but I'll leave it on for now. Real old school.

I think he's doin' pretty good right now w/ family, friends and getting out, and doing so at his own pace. It's progress. December should be pretty busy w/ Christmas and family, play it by ear from there. I'll try to work in any ideas suggested here but like I know my Dad it usually has to be his idea but maybe we can finaggle around that. It's a good start.

I'll pick up coffee creamer tomorrow.

Thank you all for the suggestions and the condolences. Much appreciated.

 

 

Great to hear fasted85

fasted58
fasted58 MegaDork
2/1/18 5:03 p.m.

Thought I'd update.

It's been over two months since Mom's passing. Dad finished up all the dealing w/ funeral, insurance, amending policies etc. and has settled in a routine... and it drives me nuts.

He'll be out almost every day of the week. The bank, diner, stores, recycling, church, cemetery, gas and stops at my place for coffee all the time. I figured out his little scheme, any excuse to get out of the house. I could combine ten of his trips into one or two. But, as he said a hundred times already he just can't sit at home every day. My sister thinks it's not a bad thing and cited a study which said seniors who get out to socialize are happier and live longer. Fact. 

Still bothers me though. Rain, snow or deep freeze he's out jaunting around. Hell, them's the days I wanna stay in. He wins though, I concede. We'll have dinner out once a week or so. When I should be bringing him dinner he brings me food. Geez, the guy makes me look bad.

No luck on a hobby yet although I've tried, he's just not interested, not even movies. Spring/ summer is another story as he'll have yard or handyman work to keep busy. He mentioned today he's gonna walk the treadmill. I could only hope to be in that good of shape at his age, I doubt it though after my shenanigans and bad habits.

Socializing, I get it now. Whatever makes him happy and right now that is his 'routine'. I'm sure he'll let me know otherwise.

He wins, we'll do it his way. 

sleepyhead
sleepyhead HalfDork
2/1/18 5:28 p.m.
fasted58 said:

Socializing, I get it now. Whatever makes him happy and right now that is his 'routine'. I'm sure he'll let me know otherwise.

He wins, we'll do it his way. 

I understand your frustration.  You wanted to be helpful, and it seems to be falling on deaf ears.

Then again, I'm glad to hear he's chugging along on his own.  Self-determination is important too... I think that's an important part of the 'getting out' and 'being social' thing.

It's too bad the area isn't more walkable, so he doesn't have to walk on the treadmill.  If he's hitting coffee, and diners... maybe he should make a habit of walking a mall to stop by the coffee shop on one end, and the... i dunno, sandwich shop (?) on the other?  That's one of the things I miss about Frankfurt... walking down, grabbing the S-bahn, hopping off, walking down to get a brat, or coffee, or just people watch.  Really good exercise, and it gets you out... unfortunately that concept is gone in the US.

Just a thought.

RX Reven'
RX Reven' SuperDork
2/1/18 5:47 p.m.

Hi fasted58,

My mom died last August and my dad recently joined a community center group for grieving people.

He talks about it a lot so I think it’s pretty important to him and from the first meeting he’s had Cougar after Cougar pouncing on him – growl.

Ovid_and_Flem
Ovid_and_Flem Dork
2/1/18 7:20 p.m.

Call the hospice social worker. UNDER LAW THEY ARE REQUIRED TO PROVIDE FOLLOW UP RESOURCES FOR FAMILY MEMBERS FOR 13 MONTHS AFTER DEATH.  They will be able to give you suggestion and offer some help.  Hospice ResourceS are there for YOU AS WELL.  Counseling, visits etc.

 

 

Ovid_and_Flem
Ovid_and_Flem Dork
2/1/18 7:22 p.m.
RX Reven' said:

Hi fasted58,

My mom died last August and my dad recently joined a community center group for grieving people.

He talks about it a lot so I think it’s pretty important to him and from the first meeting he’s had Cougar after Cougar pouncing on him – growl.

WAIT....Cougars are older women!laughhow old is your dad?

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy UltimaDork
2/1/18 7:57 p.m.

I used to go to a local gas station mechanic and three to four old guys  hung around half the morning drinking coffee and chatting.  Now I know why.  

Floating Doc
Floating Doc Reader
2/1/18 8:53 p.m.

I'm so glad your dad is getting a routine and staying active. Thanks for keeping us updated. I missed this discussion last fall, so please accept my sympathy for the loss of your mom. 

Marjorie Suddard
Marjorie Suddard General Manager
2/1/18 9:14 p.m.

Thanks for the update—your dad has been on my mind ever since your original posts last month. Mine had a similar experience—primary caregiver for my mom, who was ill for years before she passed—but at 20 years younger.  I thought he’d bounce back after she passed... even be relieved of a burden, much as I knew he (and all of us) missed her. 

Turns out that “burden” had become his entire purpose in life, and his vital cord was snipped when he was relieved of it. He died 2 weeks short of the first anniversary of her death. 

So glad to see your dad is finding reasons to occupy his days. What he’s doing may seem trivial, but  it’s a way to participate in life. That’s key. Once the weather improves, might want to check into any community garden or garden club scenes for him. But it sounds like he’s poking around already on his own. That’s good to hear.

Margie

fasted58
fasted58 MegaDork
2/1/18 10:59 p.m.

We think the grieving process is coming along fine but as we have brought up the hospice social worker he nixed that. We believe he's burned out for now on the nursing home, hospice and funeral formalities. Play that by ear for now though. He was primary caregiver going back five years, then after Mom's stroke he only missed one day in three years at the nursing home due to weather. Like Margie said, had become the entire purpose in life. I see him returning to his pre-caregiver/ old routine now, like where he left right off before Mom's health started turning. They weren't homebodies back then, they ran around like teenagers in that Buick. 

There's plenty of people at his hangouts to socialize with and that appears to agree w/ him. I don't see him seeking female companionship tho, they were married 61 years. Projects will come along when the weather breaks for sure. Just last week during a warm spell he wanted to start clearing brush out back of my place (my brush killing w/ salt thread). I'm not so motivated but stuff like that keeps him going. I'll try to work in a hobby yet. Do dinner more often. Maybe take an afternoon trip just to get outta town. 

When he left here tonight he said 'let me know if you need anything.' Okay Dad.

 

STM317
STM317 Dork
2/2/18 7:31 a.m.

I think your dad sounds awesome. Makes me miss mine.

spitfirebill
spitfirebill MegaDork
2/2/18 7:51 a.m.

Sounds to me like your dad would be the perfect member for a 20xx Challenge team. 

Ovid_and_Flem
Ovid_and_Flem Dork
2/2/18 8:35 a.m.

In reply to fasted58 :

Good to hear your dad is assimilating back into his social network and has contacts outside immediate family.  That's a good sign and good that he wants to be active.

Sometimes being around family can be a constant reminder of ya'll's collective loss/grief. It's good for him to have contacts outside of that circle.

My suggestion of using hospice resources was not necessarily to force him to continue frequent ongoing direct contact for him.  Hospice, if they're good,  can be a resource for you to bounce your concerns or observation about your dads grieving process and his adjustment.

That being said, how are YOU doing?  Don't neglect taking care of yourself.

FULL DISCLOSURE:  I'm a big proponent of hospice...my SO owned a hospice and now is executive director CSD of another so I'm a big advocate for the assistance they can provide.

Kramer
Kramer Dork
2/2/18 7:32 p.m.

My grandfather died in 2010, after about 65 years of marriage.  My grandmother, age 90 now, has had a boyfriend for the past few years.  Not a serious boyfriend, but definitely a partner.  We could be more surprised, or happier for her.  Nobody saw it coming.  Good for her.  Don't count it out. 

fasted58
fasted58 MegaDork
4/4/21 9:34 p.m.

A lot to update since 2018. This is the latest tho.

Dad fell Wednesday night 3/31/21. Got a call from his cell at 9:30 pm, really odd that late in the day. All he said was that he fell and come pick him up. I asked if he was hurt, where he is, but no reply, he was obviously struggling. 

I sped out the five miles to his house. House was dark, grocery bags on the porch and front door open. Heard him call to me when I went in, turned the LR light on. He was laying on his right side between a LR chair and a bookcase, the gap was 12" or less. He was wedged in, how he got to his cell phone I dunno. 

First thought was call 911 EMS for a lift assist. He wanted out right now so I moved the chair away, assessed him for pain before I would even move him. Got him laid flat on his back then sat him up on the floor on his insistence. Called 911 EMS, I didn't want to move him any further. I reluctantly lifted him up, spun the chair around and got him in the chair at his insistence. 

EMS showed up in 15-20 minutes, they evaluated him and recommended he be checked out at the ER, it's his call. Had pain in his right hip and thigh, abrasion on side of head. He didn't want to go. I vetoed that and they loaded him up. The two young EMT gals were fantastic. 

CT scan of his head and neck were okay, hip was broken, he's being admitted now. Surgery scheduled for Friday. He's in good hands now.

Tried to figure out WTF happened here. I asked why he's out so late. He claims he was home in daylight and by 7:30. Holy berkeley, he must have been out for quite a while. Time stamp on grocery receipt was 5:58, I figure he had to get home between 6:30 and 7 pm. He may have tripped on a throw rug at the door or another at the LR chair, or he said he may have just lost his balance. He was wedged in a hole between the chair and heavy bookcase, his fall moved both of them. He would never have crawled out of there on his own. Good thing he had his cell in his shirt pocket as he wouldn't have made it to the landline phone.

Thursdays surgery went well. Subcapsular break below the hip ball. Got a rod inserted from the ball to near the knee, secured with several screws. He'll set off metal detectors now. He was supposed to be on his feet and walking Friday but he didn't want to. He was lightly on his feet on Saturday. No therapists on duty Sunday.

This was the turning point we knew that would eventually happen. It's day to day now as far as rehab and release, just gotta wait. Don't know if he'll be able to return to his home yet. This changes everything. 

This was kind of a rant. He doesn't need to be out every day, he has free reign on that though. He could easily combine trips and go out once or twice a week but he's a people person and dislikes being home since Mom passed away. I could pick up necessities and do banking etc. for him but he's an old school, independent and obstinate guy. 

Tip: My county has a 'lift assist' by county EMS. They will medically assess and lift a fallen patient... at no charge. It's BLS (basic life support) vs ALS (advanced life support) so ALS has priority over BLS. Worth finding out if your area has this available, JIC, ya know. We first used lift assist several years ago after Mom fell and hit her head. No questioning the EMT's, she was transported to the local hospital then immediately to a regional hospital. She had a brain bleed requiring neuro specialists and a lengthy recovery. 

Also, I insisted Dad keep his cell phone with him everywhere. Just last week I found he was up and down the basement steps 4-5 times in a night. I would have never known if he was incapacitated there after a fall. 

Dad will be 98 in four months, he'll keep his routine going until he can't. This might be it, dunno yet

stuart in mn
stuart in mn MegaDork
4/5/21 8:19 a.m.

Sorry to hear what happened, but I'm impressed he's still so active at age 98.  I hope he recovers quickly.

Floating Doc (Forum Supporter)
Floating Doc (Forum Supporter) UberDork
4/5/21 9:38 a.m.

Wow. I hope he heals well, and quickly.

He's going to keep doing what he's doing as long as he can. You can try to protect him, but ultimately all you can do is love him while you still have him.

 

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
4/5/21 9:39 a.m.

In reply to fasted58 :

The only thing that will work is get him involved in some social activity. 
     Guys his age, since he likely won't be anxious to "date". Maybe VFW or church groups.  

Marjorie Suddard
Marjorie Suddard General Manager
4/5/21 9:53 a.m.

Okay, whew. Saw this thread pop back up and was afraid you had even worse news about your dad.

Glad he had followed your advice and kept his cell phone on him, and also that he has remained so active. I wish him a smooth recovery, as well as patience for all of you because it will be a slow one. Keep us posted.

Margie

fasted58
fasted58 MegaDork
4/10/21 12:44 a.m.

Dad had surgery Thursday 4/1, I didn't get to see him per visiting hours. My sister came in from 5 hrs. outta state Friday and saw him. Hospital Covie regs are only one visitor per day, if you leave the building you cannot reenter. He didn't walk like he was supposed to on Friday, Saturday or Sunday. Geezoi.

There were no beds in the hospital inpatient rehab unit, he would need to be transferred to a care home rehab facility and the hospital wanted to move him out. He hates that care home as that was where my Mom was for her last three years after her stroke, can't blame him there, I didn't like it either. In the eleventh hour on Tuesday before moving him to the care home a room opened up at the hospital inpatient rehab unit. Minor win here.

My sister saw him get settled in then returned to her home in Va. Dad was tired so he only rested that first rehab day. Wednesday, I saw him for the first time since the fall. He only walked 5 feet for therapy, geesh. Sleepy and grumpy, wouldn't eat and complaining all the time.

Typical rehab time is 10-14 days until release. He may be able to return home with 24/7 supervision of one to two weeks duration if he completes rehab. Us three kids may be able to cover that.

Thursday 4/8 he walked 10 feet and 12 feet in separate stints. I came in at two and left at six. He was out the entire time. I had to wonder if he could actually do this.

Friday morning I get a call from the therapist. Dad walked 50 feet, and then 60 feet, and then 65 feet, all in separate stints. Are you sure this is my dad? Yep. I came in later to see him, he was having dinner and scarfing it up. He was alert as ever and talking as well as he did before the fall, like normal Dad. He even gave me orders to clean his mower, sharpen the blade and get gas. Wow. 

Not getting overly confident with this progress yet, but that right there was a major win.

Mr_Asa
Mr_Asa UberDork
4/10/21 1:30 a.m.

Sounds kind of like my aunt, she was given the all clear on cancer about a month back and just this week had a mini-stroke.  Was kinda bleh and moody for the first day, day and a half.  Now three days later she's pestering them for an answer on when she can go home.  Drug a chair to the opening of her hospital room door and sat and watched the comings and goings and talked to people till a nurse made her get back in bed and took the chair from the room.

Mom says she told God "ok, I'm done being sick.  You want me to stay in the hospital, You better give me a sign."  Then started to use all of her willpower to get done with her tests and physical therapy and get home.

Same woman that got half a lung out in her first fight with cancer and when the doc came in to talk to her she sat up in bed to talk to him despite the staples holding her side together.  Doc was horrified and made her lay back down.

 

Recovery is slower as you get older, but once they get started on that track,  watch out!

11GTCS
11GTCS HalfDork
4/10/21 8:22 a.m.

I’m glad to hear he’s doing better.  It’s not unexpected for it to take a few days for the effects of general anesthesia to wear off in older patients, we’ve seen this a couple of times in our family.   Eating well and being focused on his regular routines is a great sign, he sounds like he’s on his way home.  

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