Changing Hats


Last week and this upcoming week made me realize how many hats I wear at a given time.  Seems as if this particular period of time brings them all together over a 2 week period.

hatsedwardian

Last Monday was as a new radio host, then a chiropractic client and a blogger.  Tuesday   and Wednesday I was a Promotional Marketing distributor at my Marketing Association Showcase.  Thursday I had a day to myself and  spent time on my business as a Promotional Marketing Advisor and finally a cleaner outer for my Mom’s things.  She was a hooker for over 40 years and now that she is in an adult family home, I found someone on Craig’s List interested in her supplies.  I was listing rug patterns and went through the books she has – this is going to be more of an undertaking than I realized.  Still not sure where some of her things are.

Friday I was a caretaker and daughter, visiting my Mom on a weekly visit.  I am also a longtime friend with Char who came with me on the visit.  After that we went to play and spend time catching up.  Also a wife and semi-nurse to a husband with a bad cold.  Monday I will be a radio show host and chiropractic client again, Wednesday I will be a member, Promotional Marketing Advisor and Kickass Warrior at my networking breakfast group.  Thursday I will be an RA patient for a rheumatologist visit and infusion.

This doesn’t mean I am the only one with many hats, I’ll bet everyone feels that way at one time or another. Sometimes it seems the hats need to be worn all at once or very close to each other; other times it  seems only one or two hats are worn.  In a way it makes me realize I am not just one thing, I am versatile and able to many things – some I never expected to be my role.  They have certainly been an education and have taken me out of my comfort zone.

It can be an emotional roller coaster at times.  Doing my radio show gave me flutterings inside, but I know excitement and fear feeling very much alike – I decided they were happy butterflies and they will probably be with tomorrow morning when I do the show.  Also a feeling of unreality – was I actually at the microphone of a radio station?  I checked the 1150kknw.com and there on the right on the home page was a list of shows.  mine was in there as well and when I clicked the link – there I was!  How amazing is that?

Visiting with Mom can be very difficult – Friday  she was mumbling and sleepy, though she did eat the chocolate and one of the cookies.  Char thought she seemed a bit perkier by the time we left.  Judy said they had eliminated one of her meds and there will be a difference once it is completely out of her system.  As we were leaving, Angela from Providence was arriving to vista Mom.  She is a speech therapist and she had been asked to go vista Mom and assess howe she is doing.  Apparently she was told Mom was having trouble with hot and cold food and choking at times.  I didn’t stay for 2 reasons, one I didn’t want to and second because she is different when I am around.  Angela needed to see her as she usually is.

I had no idea she was coming, so it was a real surprise.  Later she called me to let me know her assessment. Since Mom has some trouble swallowing food – part of the dementia and will get more pronounced as time goes on – and doesn’t drink enough water to keep hydrated, Angela recommended pureed food and the  thick water.  I learned about thicker water in rehab – some people have trouble with liquid water and this is more of a slight gel type.  People seem to have an easier time swallowing it.  She also suggested Judy put a little sweet flavoring to help her drink it – Mom does love sweets.

Just as I feel I ave gotten on an even keel with Mom’s condition, something comes along to rock the boat and make me uncomfortable.  In my mind I know she will get worse, but when it actually happens, it’s like a slap in the face and real.   To think and see my strong, independent Mom not able to take care of herself is a sucker punch to my stomach.  I’m not sure how to handle it, I don’t have any experience fall back on.  It’s very hard to put into words, maybe because I am not sure what I am feeling.  I was so glad Char was there, she went through something similar with her mom.  She understands and I don’t have to explain it to her.  I am so glad we had an outing planned afterwards; if I had been alone, I would have gone back home and brooded about it as well as having a very uncomfortable husband.  Thank you Char for being there for me.

When I was at the Showcase both days, I was in a familiar world; I understood what people were saying and  I was part of it.  I was completely immersed in it – the rest of the world shut out.  I saw people I haven’t seen for a while as well as meeting people I only knew by email or phone.  Also interesting to see the new trends in promo products – so many tech for phones, iPads and computers.  I also saw something that gave me an idea about promoting my show – we’ll see what happens.

I’m putting on my radio show hat today to prepare for tomorrow, I ad libbed last week and it made me nervous.  I also have my wife/editor hat – we got Eddie’s newsletter out and also he is feeling so much better.

It will be interesting to see what this week brings.

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2 Responses to “Changing Hats”

  1. Charlotte Trayer Says:

    I’m glad I was there, too, Liz, and you are welcome. The last time I visited (a few months ago, I think) she seemed to recognize me right off; this visit, she didn’t. That’s okay–it’s part of the progression. She certainly accepted my arm around her shoulder, rubbing her back, and the hug when we left, so perhaps I was starting to look familiar to her again.

    One of the hardest parts about dealing with dementia is understanding that “normal” is no longer in the vocabulary, and that you must take each day as it comes. Also, arguing or trying to reason with a person with dementia is somewhat akin to trying to teach a fish to ride a bicycle–it just won’t work! I remember how some things seemed to make perfect sense to my mom, and not to any of the rest of us!! You just have to accept it, and move on, and be thankful for each day you are given with her, because there will inevitably come when she won’t be there at all any more.

    • Lee Kaplanian Says:

      I’m so glad you were there with me. I know in my head this is going on, that at some point she will be be gone. I realize there is still part of me that is having trouble knowing that I know. You truly know how it feels because you went through it with your Mom. It helps so much not have to explain and put those feelings into words, especially when I don’t have the words for myself. I don’t feel so alone at those times.

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