The key to coping with a demented parent is to make life as easy as possible……. for YOU. By doing this, you’ll make their life easier, and maybe avoid those occasional moments of humiliation in say Target or the Catholic Church — of course, they don’t seem to be too bothered by such moments, at least my demented mom doesn’t — in fact, she usually laughs (Symptoms: laughing inappropriately? Check)……. Of course, if this is new for you, trust me….. after a while, you won’t be bothered by most behaviors either.
OK, so here’s what I’ve gots to share — FYI, I’m much more savvy now that I live in PHX and spend more time with my mom — that it is incredibly important (I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH) to have a bag of supplies. For instance today, we were in church and all was going fairly well — a few tissue moments — but during the Our Father she had a coughing fit. Well, you know my mom spits and spit she did, but I was ready and caught it in my handy paper towel…. I am also very good at anticipating and, ultimately, catching spit-up. So here’s what you must always carry in your bag or glove compartment:
1. Antibacterial hand wipes or baby wipes (I’ve cleaned floors with them)
2. hand sanitizer like Purrell
3. Dry napkins or tissue
4. pen and paper (she remembers random things and forgets random things…)
I am actually going to start carrying mini snacks too or a juice box… my attempt to distract her when she’s obsessing over something like our priest or if she has to take a pill….
NOTE: Avoid gum. My mom swallows the stuff.
Any other tips? PLEASE SHARE!!