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Stepping Out Of My Comfort Zone | Alzheimer’s Story

Alzheimer’s Story

This is about my Mom….starting her Alzheimer’s story.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I hope you spent time with your loved ones….and ate a little turkey and dressing. Today I’m stepping out of my comfort zone and sharing things I normally don’t.

You guys are my friends. I get to spend several days a week with you and I enjoy reading and answering your comments. Today I want to share things close to my heart. I just need to.

Last Thursday my mom was admitted to the hospital because she had a large blood clot in her left leg. She also has Alzheimer’s. Anyone that is the least bit familiar with Alzheimer’s knows that the disease is unpredictable.

We first noticed the symptoms, or what we considered to be the beginnings of Alzheimer’s, seven or eight years ago. It has progressed slowly and it is not something we could ever talk about with our mom. She always said “everyone has trouble remembering things when they get older”. Now we talk about it and she doesn’t comprehend what we are talking about…..I wish she did.

She was released from the hospital on Tuesday before Thanksgiving. We were glad to get her home because being in the hospital and out of her comfort zone put her Alzheimer’s in overdrive. She’s doing better now that she’s at home.

When mom was released from the hospital her doctor called Hospice Angels and requested an evaluation. They came to my parents home and met with the my family on Wednesday morning. Hospice will be coming to the house 3 days a week to help with mom’s medical issues, which will also give my dad a little time to himself.

I went to Arkansas on Friday and returned last night. That’s one reason you haven’t seen my regular posts this week…..priorities.

I’m thankful for so many things today…..my mom and dad, who will celebrate their 61st anniversary next week….my brother and sister who live in Arkansas and can check on my parents daily….Hospice Angels…..my husband who repaired a few things and did yard work for my dad just because he wanted to…..my awesome children and my even more awesome grandchildren…and my friends.

the Owen family at it's best, Alzheimer's Story

I don’t have any good photos of mom on my computer. I found this one of the Owen family at it’s best…from a couple of years ago…my mom is on the couch in the middle.

To continue reading my Mom’s story start here…..Alzheimer’s Story Part II | Stepping Out Of My Comfort Zone (March, 2015)

Have a great weekend, Kathy

Author: Kathy Owen
Kathy Owen is the founder of the home decor blog Petticoat Junktion where she shares tutorials on painting furniture and upcycling thrifty finds into unique home décor. Her DIY projects have been featured on the Home Depot Blog, Plaid Crafts, Behr Designer Series, and in numerous magazines. Kathy’s newest website is HappyHomeDIY.com

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  1. Praying for you, your Mom and Dad and entire family. Such a difficult disease and so heartbreaking. Love and prayers coming your way my friend!

  2. I’m glad you have your priorities straight. Nothing is more important than family. Many prayers going your way especially for your mom. hang on to those precious memories.
    Many Blessings
    Mary Barber

  3. Kathy,

    I’m so sorry for you & your family. My Mama had Alzheimer’s & I know first hand the struggle. My brother also had it.

    It is a very cruel disease. I’ll pray for your family.

    God Bless,

  4. So sorry to hear about your mother, I can understand what you are going thru. I was living a few states over when my mother was diagnosed with Alzheimers. Luckily I had a lot of family there to help out. She has been gone 5 yrs. Prayers for your family.

  5. Sorry to hear about your Mom-It is a very hard disease-My mother also had it. My prayers to you and your family.

  6. Kathy,
    I am so sorry to read about your mom. It’s an awful disease and I know it must make your heart ache to watch your mom go through it. My prayers are with you and your family.

  7. Wow, Kathy, you’ve had a stressful year. Life is supposed to get easier, once we raise our kids. Thankfully your hubby is better and now you’re dealing with your Mom. Alzheimer’s a dreadful disease. So good that your Dad has the Angels from Hospice to help her & him. The nurses are full of wisdom so be sure to ask them questions. They truly want to make everyone’s life easier. I watched my FIL care for my MIL for 2 years as she battled cancer and it aged him. He needed help from hospice and when we suggested it, he thought we were “throwing in the towel”. When he finally agreed, she past away 3 days later. Take all the time you need to care for your family. We will be here when you have time or if you need us!! Lots of hugs and prayers headed your way!!

  8. Dear Kathy, seeing our parents unable to function as they once had is one of hardest things we might have to do in our lives. Knowing they don’t know who we are or where they are, unable to know the people around them, their care givers. Glad she was able to get out of hospital for Thanksgiving, a mixed blessing? God help your Dad, he had the really hard job. So glad you have family in Arkansas to help your Dad and Hospice is involved now. He’ll get some respite from hardest job he’s ever had. Hope his health is good.
    The day after my Mom passed away my daughter and I both tried to call my brother in Tucson, he wouldn’t take our calls, yet he was sure around to ask what money he got or possessions of hers. San Diego is only 7 hrs. away from Tucson, not like he couldn’t make it. He complained about decisions I made to bury our Mother, how the money was spent. Much more than that as time went on. Since my Mom had moved to San Diego she had made me executor of her will. Pretty hard decisions to make. All this progressed from time she got sick, hospital, nursing home then her death over a 2 1/2 yr. period. I was living in MT and she was in San Diego. When nursing home thought she was going to die our daughter called us via my husbands company to send us message. I got on a Greyhound bus (no money for plane, used all we had to get bus ticket), in
    Boise, ID for San Diego. The minute I got off bus daughter asked how long I’d be staying at her house, having me there was a big imposition. 3 days later she dumped me at friends job with my stuff so I waited for friend to get off work, take me to east county where I’d be closer to situation and could get the burial arrangements taken care of, she loaned me money to stay at motel. My friend took me to mortuary.
    Two days later daughter wanted to know if I’d bought cheapest coffin I could to keep money for myself. My Mother had an annuity she had given to me in will so I could do what she wanted to be buried, which included having her sent to Tucson to be buried by my Dad. Almost all that money went to burying her, paying off rest of her bills, my phone bills at home taking care of other details about her trailer. I went into a terrible long depression.
    When I left motel after taking care of arrangements I took a bus to Spokane to meet up with hubs in his truck. His dispatcher helped so much coordinating my getting there so hubs could pick me up and go back to Mt.
    I am so glad you have caring family behind you and to help you. Makes such a difference.
    When my Mom was put into a nursing home she was very angry at me, I just happened to be in San Diego when the worst part started. She thought I had put her in nursing home. When I was there (actually to see my oldest son’s first born, we got a run to S.D. so we could see baby) and it worked out to help with my Mom. She was already in dementia. She told people at hospital I had taken all her money and a few other unpleasant things. I was taken into a room and cross examined like a criminal. I ended up staying in her trailer for couple weeks as they didn’t know at time if she’d be staying in nursing home, going home or ? I had her neighbors knocking on doors, screaming at me what was I doing in her house. I cleaned up her trailer from her being very sick, it was really bad.
    The lady that managed the senior park told me my Mother had told anybody that would listen I was mean to her, took her things and her money. Was very hard even tho I knew she didn’t understand what she was doing. She’d told my kids the same things so had them on my case also.
    Our parents having dementia or Alzheimers is very hard situation no matter how much help we get. The emotional stuff is hardest. It must have been so hard for you to leave her and your family. I’m glad your hubs is doing well enuf so he could do what needed to be done and leave your mind at rest about what was going on at home.
    You are a strong lady, you need to be to able handle all this, doesn’t always mean we can handle it does it? It is hard when you’re far away from situation. You have many people that care about you, makes you pretty special lady. Take care ok? Forgive me for such a long “comment”. No matter how hard somebody elses’ story is, your own is still the one you have to deal with.

  9. So sorry. It’s very hard to deal with and I have had some of those dementia problems with my mother; Thankfully she is gone some 20 years now, but I can remember telling her over and over that Vitamin C is not the mineral Calcium. Her Dr. had wanted her to take calcium which she wouldn’t do. He had seen that she had severe osteoporosis; finally her spine collapsed after she had had a broken hip and a hip replacement. I am the only surviving child, so I had to do the best I could and mom was so difficult. She had two egg cartons taped together to hold the pills she took everyday. I think she threw some away so I wouldn’t find out that she didn’t take them. Chin up! Kathy you have some family to help you. My husband also had four-way bypass and 5 years later a heart attack. That was 14 years ago. God is good, so learn to depend on Him. Sending my love!

  10. Kathy I am so sorry about your mom. It is so extra difficult when these things happen at the holiday season. I am so glad you opened your heart and shared. This is one of the many reasons I am so thankful for blogging. I agree that Hospice workers are angels. I am so glad your dad is getting a little break. It can be the hardest thing to care for your spouse who is suffering with Alzheimer’s.
    I hope your mom is feeling better from the blood clot. Life is so tenuous, you are so wise to pause and take stock of what you do have to be grateful for. I hope the next few days are peaceful for you and your family. Much love, -K

  11. Kathy, it is difficult enough when you see a parent going through what your mom is going through, but it is even harder when they are so far away. My dad lived in Springdale, Arkansas he had Hospice, and I had just had surgery and couldn’t travel so I wasn’t with him when he passed away and it still hurts when I think about it. My prayers are with you and your family, God Bless You All.

  12. Kathy, I can’t even pretend to know what you are going thru by I can and will offer support for you and your family be remembering you in my prayers. All my best,


  13. I feel I know you through your blog. You are right about “priorities”, family always comes first. Sending prayers for your family as you deal with this disease and for your mother who is blessed to have a giving caring family.

  14. We are going thru a similar experience with my mother in law. Diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and on Hospice. Sending prayers for your whole family.

  15. oh my dear, i am so sorry… i knew something was wrong, thank you for sharing i know that isn’t easy for you you must feel exhausted… take the time you need to rest up and try to keep in mind the good times i will be here looking for you every day do reposts or no posts until you are able to get back in the saddle xx

  16. Kathy, I understand what you and your family are going through. My Mom also has alzheimers. In March Mom was admitted to the locked dementia ward at the retirement village she had been living at for three years. The difficult decision has to be made for her personal safety as she started to wander and get lost. It’s hard…it’s very hard to watch a parent who raised a family slowly drift away. Mom’s in the final stages of the disease (restless, angry, fearful, inarticulate) not the person we once knew. Kudos to your Dad for managing her care at home – it can’t be easy. My Dad passed in 2005 and it was within two years of his passing that the symptoms starting presenting themselves. I am sending you hugs and my thoughts are with you and your family.

  17. family first…..you have had a year….scare with husband plus your mother…prayers for your family

  18. So sorry about your Mom. Have walked in your shoes. It’s great that your Mom has support for her issues and giving you a bit of peace of mind.
    Blessings to you and your family.