Friday 28 February 2014

My memory

Should be subtitled "Or what's left of it"

Is it cos I'm stressed? (to be sung to the tune of Moose T)

Is it because I'm getting old?

Is it because I've got way too much work on?

Is it a sign of my own personal doom?

Today I was lecturing at a local university, part of my lecture was on memory loss and mild cognitive impairment in neurological disorders.

I drove all the way home and found I'd left my laptop there.

Do you think I could take my mum's appointment at the memory clinic? Save it going to waste.

Wednesday 26 February 2014

My Mother's Memory

Life is not terribly easy for The Beautiful Parents at the moment. My mum has been having memory problems for at least 18 months but has vehemently denied it, she is quite happy in denial land, we have tried all kinds to get her to see her GP but have failed. My dad isn't able to persuade her and doesn't like to upset her, so we have a fair bit of hiding under the duvet about it. As she has been very physically well, she had managed to dodge her doctor for the last 2 years.

Recently she has been feeling nauseous and been off her food. She wouldn't go and see the GP about this as she is scared to, in case they see how bad her memory is. Eventually she was throwing up old blood and my dad phoned an ambulance, she had a perforated duodenal ulcer. The "indigestion" she'd been having clearly was more serious. So she's had some major surgery and has been thrust back into the bosom of the NHS. Normally she's not be best pleased about this but as she's so ill, her arseyness (which is legendary) was abated, she was very compliant and docile.

I went up to stay on the day she got out of hospital and was properly shocked at how poor her short term memory is. I really wasn't fully aware of how much my dad is doing and how little she can now do. She has given up any kind of housework or cooking, she is not really doing anything to contribute to the running of the house, my dad is doing everything. She was still driving but has had 2 bad experiences when a road was closed and she couldn't find her way home, she was missing for over 4 hours and my sister had to drive around to find her. I knew nothing of this.

So I have a mother who clearly has dementia and refuses to acknowledge it, I have a dad who can't walk the length of the hall without being out of breath due to his COPD and asbestosis. My mum can't even make a cup of tea now, my dad doesn't drive so can't do the shopping, my sister will help but lives 40 minutes away and also has 2 school age girls and a 15 month old baby.

So, now we are 2 weeks post surgery, today she went to the GP and had a memory test done. She could not remember any of the answers, not a single one.

My mother is now refusing to be referred to the memory clinic and to ever see another doctor as long as she lives because there is absolutely nothing wrong. She is perfectly happy.

It's the rest of us that are not.