...How much longer is this going to last? Don't get me wrong. I must love my Dad on some level (although growing up with his Narcissistic ways wasn't a bed of roses and my definition of "love" has never been accurate), but sometimes I just want to REST.
Of my dad's multiple children (that didn't die from drugs, alcohol or suicide) from multiple wives, I am the ONLY one who really has anything to do with him. Being the youngest girl I got stuck with caring for him (legally blind) and the women he has beaten since I was six years old.
I tried my hardest to "escape" by going to college and moving away, but our nauseating codependent relationship has continued on WAY past the expiration date. Thankfully, I have found a 12 step codependent program that has been a tremendous help, but sometimes...
The latest drama is his ongoing obsession with HIS BOWELS!!! For the past couple of weeks the battle between his dementia and his bowels are more than I can take. Because I'm not at the AL, I'm not sure if he's constipated or if he's got diarrhea. He says his bottom hurts but again, I can't pin down if it's because he's already "gone" and can't remember and keeps trying to go and forcing it or ... who knows?
Does dementia produce an urge to go?
After hearing about it (and not being able to get an appointment with the VA for two weeks--which I have to take a day off work and drive AN HOUR both ways to take him to) for a week, I finally gave him a suppository. Since then, he wants one EVERY DAY!!!
The man hardly eats, and even when he does, fiber is not on the list. He refuses any supplements that could possibly help him and he's still convinced that I'm the only one who can fly in and save the day. The AL staff constantly has to remind him that they are NOT doctors nor can they give him any medicines outside of the 22 pills that he takes daily.
It's SO frustrating!! Sometimes I can't help but wonder how much longer he (and selfishly... I) have to continue to suffer.
22 pills PLUS oxygen 24/7? Daddy can barely see (been legally blind since I was born) He can't hear well but refuses a hearing aid. He can't breathe because he smoked like a chimney for years (yet he apologizes for "being sick"... he brought that on on himself), He can't walk very far without being out of breath due to his COPD, his blood pressure is high, his anxiety level (and mine) is through the roof, and he has dementia, and now he can't SH*T!!! He is MISERABLE (and so am I).
So, modern medicine... is it FAIR to keep someone in a semi-healthy state with pills just to make more money ($5,000 a month for AL alone... let's not talk about the supplies, etc.)?? I often wonder if nature would have already taken its course if Dad wasn't on all the meds.
He's in pain a lot, he's afraid, he's confused... Then I feel guilty for getting agitated with him or even sometimes wishing that his battle would end.
I dunno... I guess I'm just overwhelmed