Monday, January 25, 2010

The Dan Diaries - Jan. 25, 2010

The Dan Diaries are a special place for me to write about Dan and what's happening in his life. I don't expect many people to read it but I want to record how he is progressing in regards to his Parkinson's and Alzhiemer's. I've thought that maybe someday I'll want to look back over it and see what really happened to us, and not to just survive this illness but to grow from it. Perhaps some of the children will want to read it from time to time, but there is no need to if they'd really rather not know.
I've thought about sending out emails like I did a year ago. But if some of the family would rather not watch it happen; would rather not know, then it is their right to remember him as they do.
But, I am finding times that are very gentle in it all and I just want to remember them, too.

This is just the beginning of the journey. I'll write as I can and as I want.

Tonight I shaved Dan. It was a new experience, both difficult and tender. He was kind and patient but you could tell now and then it hurt him. Afterwards, he took a quick shower (most showers now are quick), put on clean pajamas and went to bed. I tucked him in. He likes his new sheets (850 Egyptian linen). He got them for Christmas and they really are nice. I washed his comforter the other night and it turned out a lot nicer than I expected. It looks pretty good now.
I came home from the pharmacy last Saturday night at 7:30 and decided it was time to clean up his bedroom and his bathroom again. It took quite a while but it was so nice to walk out knowing his room was clean again. I don't get to do that as often as I wish, but when I do, we're both glad.
Dan's been having a lot of trouble walking. He shakes pretty bad and can't always find the strength to stand up. Most times he needs some support in order to get up from a chair. I have to keep reminding him to "don't sit down until you can feel the chair). He tries to sit down way too soon and sometimes ends up on the floor.
He's had some trouble with his speech lately and he can't remember what he wants to say by the time he gets the mouth working. It's been very frustrating for both of us because he wants to tell me and I want to listen but it just doesn't work well.
He's also been forgetting to take his meds. Tessha's been gone to Penny's to help her with the girls while she recuperates from her surgery so during the day, Dan's been on his own. I try to call when it's time to take his meds. but most of the time he doesn't answer the phone-even after repeated phone calls. So, I have to wait till I get home to know if he's taken them or not. Most of the time he hasn't.
However, the other night while I was at the pharmacy he took 3 boxes instead of the 1box that he was supposed to take at bed time. I'm going to have to work out another way to make it happen. I usually try to take his "bedtime" meds down to him when I get home. That way I can make sure he's covered up and warm, too.
He has a hard time moving his body around in the bed and sometimes he gets his head way too high up in the bed. He'd rather just "bend" over than try to move down, so I try to help him get adjusted before I leave him. Some night when I can't sleep, I go down and crawl in beside him and he holds me until I fall asleep. I like those times.
I have to hope that as winter leaves, Dan will return a bit more to us. Winter is always harder on him than summer. Maybe???


  1. He's an amazing man and we love him. Thanks for taking such good care of him. We love you too :)

  2. Thanks Jenni! I appreciate your support.

  3. Thanks for keeping us updated. I often wondered how things were going for Dad this winter. Dad thanks for your great example. Mom I love your idea to journal things. May the Lord bless you with wisdom and insight as you move forward with your new blog.

  4. Thank you Luke! I hope it helps people know how Dad is doing. I'm enjoying it and I appreciate the comments.