Less happy elder news...mixed and crossed signals, and on being an orphan
I am over two days of respiratory flu, but now I have bronchitis. I had called in Monday to Elder Services, and triage told me that they could deliver tylenol and that was covered, but Mucinex was not, so they could have the pharmacy deliver it, but I would have to private pay, and I said fine.
They never called back. They also said my visiting nurse would come and check me over, but he wasn't in on Monday. He never came. He was in the building yesterday, but apparently didn't get the memo. When I get very sick, my other issues send me into hibernation mostly. I just sleep, and when I'm awake, my pain levels are unmanaged, I'm useless. I can't intervene or do logisitics on my own behalf, I don't deal with things logically. Not much executive function. It's like really really bad depression, basically, but bounded. Not fun. I just ride it out.
Some graceful part of me knows it's just the illness decompensating my internal pain management and making everything fall apart, plus whatever illness is going on anyway. Misery. But apart from that tiny spark of grace I'm a pretty literally helpless, hopeless mess.
Well, today, I'm not actively sick, but I still have bronchitis. I spent two days of awful. I missed half my meds on schedule, and half my meals ENTIRELY, because of sleeping through them, and no one came to check my vitals or anything. This wasn't what I really expected out of living in a visiting nurse assisted living facility with PACE extra services...
First time I got sick, they had a nurse here on a Saturday (not my assigned nurse) to check me out. This time it was kind of a fail... Time for a post mortem, happily not literally, maybe we can do better next time.
And because I'm so articulate outside of my compromises, they'll say, "Well, why didn't you just call us?" sigh... People do not understand brain damage in a person with an otherwise agile intelligence. Even medical people who deal with stroke survivors daily.
I don't understand it. I just have to live with it.
Already I've had one student nurse accuse me of "refusing medication" because I fell asleep and didn't take my meds because I was having a horrible migraine, and my reaction to pain, often, is what they call "uncontrollable daytime sleepiness. She had come to give me my morning meds and I'd sort of croaked from bed, by reflex, "yes, I'll be up in a minute..."
When she came back at noon and I hadn't moved, her reaction wasn't that she should have brought them to my bedside, but that I had wilfully lied to her, and she turned on the lights and scolded me loudly, despite my soft protests to please turn off the lights and lower her volume, that I was having a migraine, and my attempts to explain the situation.
That I was not refusing medication. That I reacted to pain by sleeping, it was part of my illness, and could she please lower her volume, that to me it sounded like yelling -- and saying loudly that she was NOT YELLING did not help. Just...please? Turn off the light and lower your volume? Do you know what a migraine is? This was not getting my meds taken faster or more efficiently, and was delaying her to the next resident. I understood her point. Can we move on?
And yes, I complained to the head nurse on Monday on that one. She was a contract nurse covering for my regular one on Saturday who will be back this weekend, thank God. My little Chaachee, I think of her, my little Desi nurse who scolds me softly sometimes, and who loves my prayer flags and my Ganesha and such and my rice cooker and my spices, lol, but yes is my little auntie about my meds and so on. I appreciate her so much more now!
It can be love to ride someone on their habits, and I know that. I need it. I have lost so much. My yoga needs to be delivered and accepted, but also anticipated. And I don't know how to teach people to anticipate it.
It's a puzzle.
I maybe need nurses as fallback. But what I really need is family. This is what I used to do for my mother. Nursing delivers against but does not anticipate needs. That comes with love.
So I have been very homesick lately, but not for any home I left, but for the home no one gave me. There is no one in my life who anticipated and delivered that kind of care to me competently, as I historically did for others -- for my lovers/husbands/housemates/family (of choice), my son, my mother, even my clients to some extent.
I am an orphan. And that is why I am in this place.
Joseph can help a bit with the money, and he is a good kid, and I love him to death, but on a family basis, as caregiver issues go, I am an orphan, and as a person who cared for people a lot of my life, that just makes me sad.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_RIy21U5J8