My mother is in her 90's and has fallen 3 times in the past 6 months; each time requiring a hospital stay. Each time, the doctors have recommended a rehab facility but mom absolutely refuses to go into one -- so, we have in home nursing and therapy 3 times a week, and someone come in each morning to make sure she gets up, bathed, fed, medicated, and gets her situated for the day. I come by after work to fix her dinner and sit with her until she is safely in bed.
Early on, mom would only agree to having the nurse's aid come in Mon-Sat, and every other Sunday because she wanted to have one day without any outsiders in the house. It turned out that on the off Sundays, she would end up calling me to get her out of bed, so we agreed the aid would come in 7 days a week. Last night I confirmed the aid was coming and I called this morning to make sure she was actually here. Mom said aid was probably at a neighbor's and she would be fine.
I called her around 4 to see what she did today and what she wanted for supper. It was then that I learned the aid had not come and mom had been unable to get out of bed the entire day. When I got to her house, I found her still in bed, laying in urine soaked pajamas! I asked her why she hadn't called me earlier and she said she figured she would be able to get up on her own eventually. When I questioned her about the incontinence, she said that she hadn't actually wet the bed, but that every time she moved, a little came out. (A lot came out apparently, because her mattress pad was soaked as well.)
I got her up out of bed and into the bathroom and she apparently had a lot of urine left inside. She finally finished using the bathroom and bathed herself, and I helped her dry off and get dressed. She's sitting up in the den now and still seems very sleepy and either not willing or not able to carry on a conversation. She's just reading the paper and dozing off. When I ask her if she was sleeping, she insists she was just resting her eyes.
I'm feeling very guilty for not following up to make SURE the aid was here, and also guilty that my mother was laying in her own urine soaked bedding for the entire day. I'm also frustrated that she didn't think it was necessary to call me, or one of her friends in the neighborhood who know her condition.
She steadfastly refuses to give anyone power of attorney and steadfastly refuses to go into assisted living. She's always been fiercely independent and I know she feels a lot of anger and resentment about needing a little help to get up and get through the day.
Having her declared incompetent would destroy her, but I'm not convinced she is capable of making logical decisions about her health and well being. n She's lucid enough to know the basics... day of the week, time of day, what meds she needs to take when, etc.... but when I ask her about her day.... what she did, who she talked to, what she saw on television or read in the paper, she gets annoyed with me.
Her aid, the nurse, and the physical therapist all think she is so witty and wonderful -- but she treats me and her close friends with increasing hostility and accuses us of being bossy.
I really don't know what to do now. Has anyone else experienced a similar progression?