Carnivore Dreams – Hallucinations

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Wow. What a night already. Last night I was up all night, all of it, not a wink, with Dad taking his venitilator mask off, pulling the little humidifier on the floor. Today he was hallucinating some, so they called in a different steroid. Seemed to help breathing and some of the dream-like hallucinations. I thought. But now he talks perfectly normally almost, but unhooked part of his catheter and when we tried to stop him from pulling on his briefs like that, hard to explain how it hooks to his leg, he yelled at us, and we yelled back because we were afraid he’d pull the whole thing out. Then he screamed at me a while and told me to never talk to him like that again. He looked perfectly lucid. While I was perfectly livid.

Mind you, this man has never given me a heartfelt thank you, some flip ONCE, ‘have I told you I appreciate this” in this joking voice. I said jokingly, “no,” and got “well I do.” While these days I even have to wipe his fanny–arguably the LEAST of the sacrifices.

So I told HIM he better never talk to US like that again–we were just trying to help him and had been for a long time — and slammed the door. Of course, I checked on him, turned off the movie he was watching in Spanish with no sub titles. When I realized he really WAS out of it. Still. But in a different way than usual. Which is why I didn’t get it at first. He was more lucid, and mean, like he used to get if he drank martinis.

He asked what nurses were coming. And when. Told him and said my brother was coming. He wanted to know if my bother quit his job. Tried to explain his contract as consultant was winding down and he was looking forward to retirement. Dad didn’t know where his house was in Florida. Thought it was time we headed back to the house (where we already are). All things he certainly knew but felt we were keeping from him AND keeping him from being ambulatory. I’m keeping him prisoner in this bed, you see.

Got him to sleep in the mask.

Hour later, takes his mask off again and wants to know the story about why my son John (or his girlfriend Christie or my brother Rick–he knew it was one of them) embezzled the money from Jimmy Johns a place Johnny hasn’t worked in years and his girlfriend Christie is a manager–they adore her) and my brother certainly never has worked there!, and it goes without saying none of them are in the slam , oh and he said he had one of the thousand dollars (he keeps two thousand in an envelope) in his pants pocket (he was only wearing briefs) and I told him I’d moved all of it since so many people we didn’t know were coming and going. Moved it into my room. He seemed not to remember yelling at me and me at him. Which worked out because he wasn’t getting an apology. Yet he definitely thinks I’m keeping him a prisoner in his room. Though he isn’t sure it IS his room.

He was prescribed a more potent steroid and am sure that is causing the hallucinations and behavior when Parkinson’s already predisposes you to hallucinations, but it DOES seem to be helping his lungs. Not sure about five more days of this though….

How terrifying to think all your relatives are either about to head to the slam or are sabataging and gaslighting you, keeping you prisoner. But I am pretty sure this is related to the steroid — same one Donald Trump took with Covid. It does seem to have helped Dad’s chest, but now he’s completely out of it–completely.

My father in law once had hallucinations when he was dehydrated from a bad arthritis attack and always believed I wanted to put him away in a home. ME. Who just wanted him to have a lift chair and a cordless phone. Nobody could ever convince him I didn’t say or arrange any such thing. My husband’s step mother told me you could never convince him otherwise.

I patted Dad’s arm and told him to try and trust me. I’m sure another night with no sleep for me –a dirty house and my brother due for a visit. Plus at least one nurse showing up, the house that disaster from Christmas.

It was a nice few days mostly, though, with my grandson and kids –and Dad was really pretty good and made it out to his chair for the day. I guess he doesn’t remember that.

But you KNOW how this is going to turn out, don’t you? There is NOT A SNOWBALL’S CHANCE IN HELL, it isn’t going to turn out exactly like this: I will have given up two years or three or maybe four of my life and a good chunk of retirement, and the last memories my dad will have of me are those of my being Nurse Ratchet. Ruining his life. There is NO WAY this can turn out otherwise. Of course. Even though he had a couple good years at home and not in a joint– and that I’ve stood between he and certain disaster too many times to count –that is not what he’ll remember or be aware of.

NO WAY.

NADA.

6 thoughts on “Carnivore Dreams – Hallucinations

  1. I. Am. So. Sorry.

    And I think you’re right about all of it: the steroid, your dad, the time, and the thanks you’ll get.

    This is our lot in life. Pray (or hope) that someone who loves you as much as you love your dad takes care of you in your dotage. I don’t know whom, but someone. ❤️

    I’m in a similar boat (not the same, mind you, but enough to REALLY feel for you). You’re not alone.

      1. You’re welcome. Please don’t ever feel compelled to reply to me; I comment impulsively (I was sometimes THAT person in class who acted like the teacher was talking directly to me). It’s how I process information, and it’s my way of letting you know you’re not shouting into the void. 🌼

        Happy New Year to you and my fellow readers…even though I don’t have high hopes for the coming year.

  2. Not “like” because of the situation, because it’s terrible. But I “like” your determination to keep going. More admire it really. Your experience is your own, of course, though I can relate. My mother had cancer, and I changed the course of my life for a few years so I could be with her in the hospital and at home. Yes, these are hard times that go without great gratitude (if at all).

  3. Thanks for your note! I’m sitting here in Dad’s bedroom. He’s still out of it, maybe steroid, maybe not. Hospice coming tomorrow and an N- palliative doctor. Slight fever so they are not sure it isn’t Covid. I doubt it. Somehow. Though I’m sure they’ll call it that. He’s been home a good ten days. Of course health people come in and out. He was already sick before my kids came who had been quarantined and tested.

    It’s hard to say anytime over the last two years that he ever really appreciated me being here. Never really showed any concern for me, though the Parkinson’s may have changed him some. But I guess it’s about me and not him. The Tin Man was wrong. The Wizard told him a heart was not judged by how much you love, but how much you are loved by others. Nope, that’s not true. It’s about how much you invest in anything that makes it worth a damn. And I just always loved my dad.

    Hospice is coming tomorrow. I’m trying to avoid sending him off anywhere where he’ll be all alone with strangers and we can’t even be sure of his care. It’s like we’ve all woken up in some other world. Your note really helped me. Funny. You feel so alone. I imagine it was tough for you, too. Thanks for writing it. Really. Really

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