88303258Yesterday afternoon, as I was listening in the distance as my father talked on the phone, I heard him tell my mother that I was fired from my nursing postion. “They didn’t like her; she was too bossy”, he said.
You might be thinking “well, that’s what you get for listening in on someone else’s conversation”. In most cases, that would be true, but due to my father’s dementia it is necessary to oversee (overhear?) his telephone conversations. If you are caring for a loved one with dementia, you already know this, but if you are not, let me just say that in the past, my father has called 911 to report that the NASA astronauts were in trouble, called a car dealership and had a used truck DELIVERED, called a man who was selling a radial arm saw numerous times in one day. So, yes, I must listen to my father’s phone calls.
Let me just say that after hearing what my father said, I was tearful for the rest of the day. I KNOW that he has dementia and I KNOW that he confabulates. But it still hurts.
Questions arise: what, in the deepest recesses of his brain, would cause him to say that; did my mother believe him; does my father just have an over-all bad opinion about me?
At our house each evening, we play at least an hour of Cribbage, often two hours. My father looks forward to this part of the day, and it keeps his brain working, so I try to make sure it is included every day. Last night I had to sit at the table and pretend that everything was lovely when inside, I just wanted to hide out and cry.
Maria Shriver’s episode “Grampa, Do You Know Who I am?” in the HBO Alzheimer’s series (see the whole series on my resource page here) showed a grandmother telling her grandaughter “GO HOME!!” while tears ran down the astonished child’s face. Thankfully her older sister was there to comfort her and remind her that it wasn’t her Grandma talking, it was the disease.
In my next newsletter, we are going to delve deeper into “how not to be hurt by hurtful words”. So if you’ve not signed up for it, you might want to do so.
If you have any specific questions that you’d like answered, please leave them as a comment and I’ll do my best to answer.

PS  If you’re wondering…………I still a job.


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