Friday, October 19, 2007

Bump in the Road

Well, Mother Nature interfered....or intervened, depending on your point of view, with my Alzheimer Lady dilemma of "To Drive or Not to Drive...Will Anyone Ride With Her?".

Wednesday night I called this woman's granddaughter to discuss the fact I'd been told, in no uncertain terms, by one of the daughters that her Mama would never drive us to bowling again and it was my job to explain it to Mama. I knew such a conversation with the Granddaughter might actually result in that long overdue family chat. Unfortunately, Granddaughter was at the hospital...with her grandmother. And yet in spite of that, the Granddaughter's husband went out of his way to reassure ME. He asked questions about what I'd observed and laughingly agreed that I'd found the family members still in denial. But what totally caught me off guard was the fact he thanked me for caring enough to point out something was wrong when I could've just looked the other way.

Not my style. But it was nice of him to notice.

They believe at this point the woman's had a light stroke. She had another of her daughters [you know, the one I wasn't ever suppose to call..sigh] call me from the hospital with an update. Then the woman got on the phone with me herself, sounding rather chipper, considering. She actually apologized for not being able to drive to Bowling on Friday. Inwardly, I squirmed. I replied she shouldn't worry about it and instead concentrate on scoring well on her remaining "tests". She giggled. I asked if it was okay to call a couple of her friends in the group with her room number. She seemed relieved.

Relief is a funny emotion. When I told about her hospitalization, all of the bowlers expressed concern. And yet in the eyes of some, I saw relief. Self preservation is a mighty powerful motivator, but it can still turn the guilt screws when your choice is based on protecting yourself due to the declining health of another.

I hope this opens the family's eyes...and the doctor's. I think it's about time they talked about her driving. I'd certainly rather have her believe it is the doctor's choice she turn in her keys than believe her friends had turned their backs on her because they no longer felt safe to ride along. I have faith in the Granddaughter to continue to do the right thing.

But hey, Guardian Angel! Sir, if I were you, I'd take some vitamins. Considering how tough my week's been, I'm pretty sure you're worn out from just hanging around and holding me up.

1 comment:

Bonnie said...

Yep, as I said I went through the same thing with my in-laws when their dad developed alzheimers. But it was the driving that scared me the most and my now ex-husband and I ended up having to take him to live with us and the first thing we did was take his keys away!