Monday, October 24, 2011

Grouchy Old People

Mom is 93 years old and is dying. You only have to look at her to know this. And she's grouchy. From the constant aches and pains of a decrepit body, I suppose. Grouchiness breeds impatience, too. I have to work at being patient with her now because constantly getting snapped at over nothing grates the nerves to bleeding raw. We're both praying that God calls her home and soon. It hurts seeing her all curled up in her hospital bed moaning from pain, but there's nothing to be done for someone who is resistant to help.

Old people pee on themselves a lot. Even with the adult diapers, it still stinks. Stinks up a whole room like unreal. Mom peed herself in the night and wouldn't get up to be cleaned. Told me she didn't care if she was laying in her own pee and that it stank.

Oh, crap. Here we go again.

Had to open a can of firm patience blended with a little tough love.

I had to threaten to call the fire department to finally make her get up. Gave her fifteen minutes to make up her mind and if she wasn't trying to get up, I'd have to call the cops on her as well. She called my bluff and I raised the stake by telling Mom what I was going to say to the 9-1-1 operator.

"9-1-1. What's your emergency?"

"Hello. My name is Charlotte. I have a 93 year old mother that refuses to get out of bed. She's soaked in her own urine and smells terrible. I am concerned she will get a skin disease from soaking in her own urine. Please send help. I don't know what to do get her out of bed. She smells terrible and this can't be good for her to soak in her own urine for hours. I've been trying to make her get up and she refuses, too. Says she doesn't care if she is soaking in her own pee and stinking up the entire room."

After that, I would have to give my address because this is clearly a call of concern for a person at risk of causing themselves bodily harm. I would have done it, too. No doubt about that.

Mom got right up and is now eating breakfast all cleaned up and in fresh diapers. Grouchy. In pain. Can't do nothing except forget herself in Turner Class Movies or the Weather Channel. Old people are hard headed, but even they have fears you can manipulate to get them to take better care of themselves.

When the day comes and Mom won't get up and out of bed because she is drenched in her own urine no matter what trick I pull out of my hat, well, that's the day I'll call her doctor and home health nurse and see about having Mom put into a nursing home. As long as Mom capitulates a little bit, I can take care of her. If she won't stay clean or refuses to eat, it's hello nursing home. My skill set level in caring for old and grouchy people just went as high as it can go and now she needs professional help.

I asked Mom last week about letting my older sister care for her for a while, but she refused. Said she doesn't trust my older sister. Well, looks like I'm here for the long run then.

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