Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sunday with Kaye

I haven't reported on Kaye in a bit. I feel a little heavy hearted for some reason this evening. Nothing major going on. On one hand, I see little things that make me feel hopeful. Today, she wanted me to help her practice writing her name. Actually, she prints it. That surprises me, as I imagine she's written her name in cursive for about fifty years. It seems that would be the pattern that surfaces in her mind, but no, it's one stroke at a time, like Bean does. She will do it one time, mostly correctly, but doesn't say the right letters, then tries again and can't quite get it. She is able to recognize when it's not right. I gave her an A+, and hung her effort on the refrigerator.
You know they kept telling us that in brain injuries what you see the first three months is about the most progress a person is likely to make. Well, she hardly made any progress the first three months. She had no appetite, or perhaps even an understanding of what food was. Then forever we would get her to eat a half cup of yogurt or soup on a good day. Now, it's like it's gone completely the other way and she wants to eat a lot.
She also wants to drink a lot. The staff at the dialysis clinic fusses at Pete everytime and tells him to limit her liquids. She has to take this big pile of pills four times a day. How in the world is he supposed to get them down her? When he tries to get around letting her have something, it just hurts her feelings.
So, we have a new thing-the writing. But, she didn't get up until 9:30 today and laid back down before noon for almost two hours, then wanted to go back to bed at 4.

Other concerns are her sodium levels dropping too low in dialysis, and her blacking out-three times in the last two weeks. Lastly, she has not been showing much progress in therapy, for about three weeks. Pete says. He has long been valiant in holding to the hope that she would make a better recovery than she is making. You know, if it works like it did with Daddy, little progress means they stop the therapy. Yeah, I get it from an insurance stand point. They want those dollars spent where you see results. What they don't get is even if she can never get up and walk, she feels so much better about herself when she even takes a few steps. All the work she does builds her strength and she will do it for them much more willingly than for us.
It is of course heartbreaking for Pete to think that this as far as she will go. Heartbreaking for us all because she knows what she can't do and hates it.
Today they were trying to make a grocery list. She wanted something put the list and we ran through every other thing on a grocer shelf and couldn't get it. I try to placate her and just say, "Oh, don't worry, if something comes up and we need it, we'll run get it." But Pete will not give it up. In some strange way she's wired now, she says, "diamin" for any word she doesn't know. She said, "It's like what you are doing." I was cooking. "Sue had it, David wants it." We finally called David down and continued until at last we arrived on my last nerve at "chili"-thanks be.
She gets so frustrated, who can blame her. Then, that leads to her calling Pete some unpleasant things.
Pete is sick this week with a cold and now cough, an antibiotic making him sick at his stomach.
So, I feel such sadness for them. Sad that there is really no one to take care of his needs when he's sick. I mean when my sisters and I are there, we cook and catch up laundry, but then we have to leave. I don't know, I just don't know.


  1. She kicked those first three months in the hiney! praying therapy goes better and the people signing things see what they need to see.