Thursday, June 30, 2011

You can't always get what you want..

When one door closes, another one opens. The actual quote by Alexander Graham Bell goes like this.
"When one door closes another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us."
I often go with this version..."When one door closes, sometimes you have to bang ,bang , bang the next one open with a sledgehammer or find a window."  This is more of a "
sledgehammer but found a window story." 

When Mom first had a stroke, her anxiety was terrible. She had panic attacks. Who wouldn't panic? You suddenly do not have any control over half of your body and you can barely talk! 

Her anxiety is still an issue 3 years after the stroke.  She has to suffer this problem on a daily basis. She becomes anxious every time something like lunch is 5 minutes late. She becomes anxious if the med-aid hasn't brought her meds, even if the med-aid is only bringing her crushed up calcium mixed in pudding. She becomes anxious if her bed isn't made just right, if her bed isn't exactly a certain amount of inches away from the wall so her night light doesn't work properly. She becomes anxious if her sweater is being washed and hasn't come back from the laundry on time. She becomes anxious if she is not placed exactly in the middle of the bed. Want more examples? Naah, that's enough.

We went through an incredibly anxious spell recently where Mom could not be distracted from this anxiety. She couldn't really have a conversation, she was always miserable and worried. It breaks my heart to see her this way !

Deciding that giving her more meds was no longer a solution, I said to the nurses "I'm sick of doing that! Giving me some meds might be a solution, I don't know."  In fact, Mom was also starting to say things that were not really like her at all and that was upsetting as well. Every once in a while, she would actually say something mean! That is just not like my mother! Not ever before like my mother! I ask about alternatives treatments. I was informed about a psychiatrist that works specifically with stroke victims and anxiety. That's great! Let's try something different!

I was excited to hear what the psychiatrist had to say! The pschiatrist evaluated Mom and diagnosed her. He said she is starting to get dementia and when a stroke victim gets dementia, they often become more anxious. He prescribed a different type of depression medication and a patch that is time released and will slow down the dementia. So the psychiatrist was a good idea not because he could listen to her problems, and help her with his psychiatry as I was hoping. If he didn't find this, her dementia would have been diagnosed later and came upon her faster.  When it comes to my Mom, we have always been able to say, "At least she still has her mind."  We want to continue being able to say that as long as possible even if it's an anxious mind. 

So let's just go with that... and be happy about it.

As Mick Jagger of The Rolling Stones so eloquently put it, "You can't always get what you want, But if you try sometimes well you just might find,You get what you need."


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