Sunday, 26 December 2010

A hastened decline?

My father hasn't eaten since Tuesday night. He was nil by mouth and until he was settled, but now he's struggling to swallow. Because of the holidays he hasn't been seen by the necessary specialist staff.

It seems he's had a massive seizure instead of a stroke, which is in many ways, great news. Easier to recover from and to treat. However, i'm terrified that he will end up another case of someone who declines rapidly because of hospital stays and not because of the reason he ended up there. The general wards have no idea how to care for someone like him. They didn't realise he could eat on his own, or walk or was alert.

Two good nurses spent a long time with me today talking it all through, but they're worried. Worried he's not managing to swallow water. At worst he could end up being tube fed. If that happens he will never make back to the unit where he's comfortable and well looked after.

I am so scared that he won't get back to his 'normal'.

It breaks my heart to see him in a place where they're trying their best but don't have the skills or the knowledge to do what he needs. He can't fight for himself. We must do that for him.

Days like today are lonely. I've done my running around after my family, got through what needed to be said and done and now I'm just sitting here typing, crying.

There's an invite to the pub, but can I face a group of near strangers with only a couple of familiar faces? I know I don't want to be here on my own wallowing. I just want some comfort, somewhere for my words and tears to go. Someone to listen, to be looked after. Instead, I just have to carry on, pull myself together and try and brave the world.
I want for Dad to be treated with respect and care, and not to be a victim of a system not geared t deal with dementia that is stealing him little by little.


  1. You have a Rambling Beard Award waiting for you over on my blog. Do pop by to collect it :)

  2. I found your blog through Kim Ayres blog ( this morning and I've been reading through your posts since…

    Your writing resonates with me, having seen both my mother's parents go through (and pass on from) slow declines, both mental and physical, over the last 3 years or so. Your posts read to me as a journal of what SHE must have been going through…some of the things she couldn't articulate.

    I do hope your father does find the respect and care he needs and deserves…

  3. Stuart - Hello and thank you. None of it is easy or straightforward but what in life is? Weirdly there's still a lot of joy in it all too....

    Kim - Thank you!

  4. Hey, I found you at Kim's.
    Might I say, you are refreshingly honest.

    I hope your father's health improves, and that things ease up on you.

    Congrats on your Rambling Beard Award. :)

  5. Thank you. I appreciate you stopping by. If we can't be honest in this world of anonymity i'm not sure where else i'd be sending these thoughts.....My father's on the way up,thank goodness, V