My "Moony" Monday  

ButteryDelight 58F
1961 posts
6/5/2006 12:18 pm

Last Read:
6/10/2006 5:10 pm

My "Moony" Monday

For those of you that don't know, I am a home health care nurse or a CNA. I work for an agency that helps the elderly to live in their homes longer instead of going to nursing homes. I work every day from 8: 00 till noon and on the weekends I have a beeper and am on call if one of my clients need me. I have been doing this since I retired from teaching elementary school. I had been teaching ten years and just felt like I needed a change of careers. So, I went to the local community college and attended an 8 week course and was certified at the course's end
Every day at work is different. My job is challenging and sometimes frustrating as well but always it is rewarding.

Mondays have never been my favorite day of the week. I am a firm believer in Murphy’s Laws, which are as follows:

MURPHY'S LAWS

1.Nothing is as easy as it looks.
2.Everything takes longer than you think.
3.Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.
4.If there is a possibility of several things going wrong, the one that will cause the most damage will be the one to go wrong. And if there is a worse time for something to go wrong, it will happen then.
5.If anything simply cannot go wrong, it will anyway.
6.If you perceive that there are four possible ways in which a procedure can go wrong, and circumvent these, then a fifth way, unprepared for, will promptly develop.
7.Left to themselves, things tend to go from bad to worse.
8.If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.
9.Nature always sides with the hidden flaw.
10.Mother nature is a bitch.
11.It is impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious.
12.Whenever you set out to do something, something else must be done first.
13.Every solution breeds new problems.

This Monday Murphy's law #4 was very much in evidence. For me when something goes wrong, it always seems to happen on a Monday. With that in mind, let me tell you about my Monday so far.

I arrive to work for Mrs._________, an elderly woman of 85 years with advanced Alzheimer’s. Mrs. ________ is one of my most challenging clients. Some days, what I call her "good days" she is in a calm state of mind and in full possession of her mental facilities. She will ask me questions about my daughter and my son. She is sweet and very agreeable to a bath, hair wash and to taking her medicines. On those days she often begs me not to go home. Other days she is an agreeable state of mind but almost child-like. She calls me by her daughter's name, or her granddaughter’s name and forgets where she is and what she is doing. On her "bad" days she is in a very aggressive state of mind. She cusses worse then a drunken sailor, pardon the example but it fits, throws food and other things at me and will not cooperate with anything I ask her to do. I have been taking care of Mrs. ________ for four years and have definitely noticed that her "bad days" seem to be escalating to where she is having more and more of those. Some "bad days" I am forced to leave the house. I drive off, usually in tears. Then I wait a few hours and come back to try again. So, far just once have I come back to find her still in an aggressive state.

Today I drove up to her house, turned of my car and just sat in the driveway for a while. I could hear Mrs. _______ screaming from inside the house. I was filled with dread and sadness because I knew this was going to be a "bad day" But, I had made a commitment, a promise that to me was very binding. I made myself get out of the car and go up to the door with her house keys in hand. I opened the door and yelled, "Good morning Mrs. _______ It is I". This was my standard greeting. My voice silenced her screams and I walked into the living room to find her totally naked, sitting in her recliner. Pretending not to notice her state of undress, I calmly said I had brought her breakfast with me. She screamed to hurry up and bring it in here and what a dolt I was for not bringing it. I sighed and turning around I went back into the kitchen and uncovered the breakfast I had cooked for her at my house. I could not cook at Mrs.________ home because her daughter had the gas turned off because Mrs. _____ kept leaving it on with out the pilot light lit.

Well, I won't bore you with every single detail but the rest of the morning rapidly went down hill from then on. Mrs.____________ said the bacon was not cooked enough and preceded to throw it at me. I ducked and continued about my duties, ignoring her yelling and incoherence. I washed the dirty dishes and did two loads of her laundry. But, I could not convince her to let me bathe her and wash her hair. Since I was the only one who did that for her, she smelled pretty bad. I tired but nothing I did pleased her, including turning on the air-conditioning so the house would be cool.

Finally, I had to leave and go back home. Before leaving I went to the next-door neighbor and asked her to keep an eye on Mrs. _____ On my way home I used my cell phone to call Mrs. ______ daughter. I warned her that her mother was in a very agitated state of mind. The daughter said that she would check on her on her way home from work this evening.

At home I ate a salad while I worried about Mrs. ____ I got a call about an hour after I left from the neighbor. She called to tell me that Mrs. ____ was out in the front yard totally nude. I groaned oh no and ran out side to jump in my car and drive back to Mrs. ______ house. On the way back, I called the daughter again and told her what happened. The daughter said she was on her way.

When I arrived, Mrs. ______ was standing in the front yard wrapped in a bed sheet. The neighbor was in the front yard along with a wildly gesturing Domino's pizza deliveryman. I parked and hurried over. It seems that Mrs. ______ mooned the Dominos pizza deliveryman while the next-door neighbor had gone to get a sheet to cover her. As I listened to the complaints of the pizza man, a police car drove up. It seems that the pizza deliveryman called the police on Mrs. ________. When the policeman came over to find out what was going on, the pizza deliveryman told his side first. Then, I tried to calmly explain that Mrs. _______ was just a harmless if slightly senile old woman. We talked about her Alzheimer’s and how this was one of her "bad days" About that time the daughter drove up. She added her voice to the neighbors, and mine all three of us trying to convince the policeman not to arrest Mrs. ________. While we were talking to the policeman Mrs. ________ stood off to the side muttering the whole time. "I don't know what the big ass deal is,” she said resentfully. "He has an ass..I have an ass" "I have a pussy he has..well he doesn't have one of those".

All of a sudden the whole ridiculous situation struck me as hysterically funny. I had to bite my tongue to keep the laughter at bay as Mrs. ______ continued to mutter about asses and what an ass et they were and nothing to be ashamed of".

Finally the policeman agreed not to press charges unless this happened again. Between the neighbor, the daughter, and myself we convinced Mrs. _____ to go back into the house. We paid the pizza man $50.00 for his pain, shock and suffering from being mooned and he drove away.

Mrs. _______ ate some soup and when I left the house again she was sleeping comfortably. I know she will remember nothing of this tomorrow. As for myself, I will never forget my "Moony" Monday



akron42   
2375 posts
6/5/2006 1:37 pm

I can feel for you! I did elderly care for a year before I had to stop for health reasons. You get so attached to the clients! Now I'm dealing with my own mother who has forgotten just about everybody but me. She's still pretty sweet tempered most of the time, but one day she claimed she hadn't slept all night. My father, her main caretaker, said "You DID sleep, you kept calling out for me during the night!" Her reply was "You're wrong and I can prove it. I don't even know your name!" We try to see the humor in her, but I miss my mom.


fancy_for_you 39F
3014 posts
6/5/2006 3:57 pm

Lol...I can see this all happening. I worked for a Nursing home for 3 almost 4 years. When I got my CNA certification I was working in the Alzheimer's Unit. Some of the things the people did were down right hilarious but of course you try hard not to laugh because that would be unprofessional, but once you are in private you laugh like crazy. I used to be able to handle working with folks with alzheimer's until I got called home from vacation one year because my family couldn't figure out what was wrong with Granny. She was found sitting in the kitchen floor playing with her pajama top saying she had to fix it. Then a couple days after I got home I caught her trying to crawl under the table to bake Grandpa some cookies(Grandpa has been gone for 11 years at this time). It was a very hard thing to go through...and through it all she always knew who I was. When we put her into the home and a year and a half later my Granny passed away. Because of this my heart now goes out to the families who deal with alzheimer's, it's a terrible disease.

Sorry for taking over your blog Buttery. And glad you at least got a laugh outta yoru day.

ZFuzzy

~~Fuzzy~~


ButteryDelight 58F

6/5/2006 4:34 pm

    Quoting akron42:
    I can feel for you! I did elderly care for a year before I had to stop for health reasons. You get so attached to the clients! Now I'm dealing with my own mother who has forgotten just about everybody but me. She's still pretty sweet tempered most of the time, but one day she claimed she hadn't slept all night. My father, her main caretaker, said "You DID sleep, you kept calling out for me during the night!" Her reply was "You're wrong and I can prove it. I don't even know your name!" We try to see the humor in her, but I miss my mom.
Akron42, Yes, I do get attached to my clients I had three die earlier this year all with in a month or two of each other. I mourn them as I would and do my own mother's death, so I am taking a break before getting any more. Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a comment.


ButteryDelight 58F

6/5/2006 4:41 pm

    Quoting fancy_for_you:
    Lol...I can see this all happening. I worked for a Nursing home for 3 almost 4 years. When I got my CNA certification I was working in the Alzheimer's Unit. Some of the things the people did were down right hilarious but of course you try hard not to laugh because that would be unprofessional, but once you are in private you laugh like crazy. I used to be able to handle working with folks with alzheimer's until I got called home from vacation one year because my family couldn't figure out what was wrong with Granny. She was found sitting in the kitchen floor playing with her pajama top saying she had to fix it. Then a couple days after I got home I caught her trying to crawl under the table to bake Grandpa some cookies(Grandpa has been gone for 11 years at this time). It was a very hard thing to go through...and through it all she always knew who I was. When we put her into the home and a year and a half later my Granny passed away. Because of this my heart now goes out to the families who deal with alzheimer's, it's a terrible disease.

    Sorry for taking over your blog Buttery. And glad you at least got a laugh outta yoru day.

    ZFuzzy
Yes, alzheimers is a terrible disease. Fuzzy, feel free to talk or rather write as long as you want to on your comments.


MamChelle 48F  
1443 posts
6/5/2006 10:29 pm

BD,
i was a cna in wv. for a five years doing exactly what you do.(plus my mother owned a personal care home where we had 9 patients) i worked for the community action medicade waiver program, in parkersburg WV. i had a client that had altzheimers, and suffered mostly from sundowners. Being that i lived only 2 streets over from her, the neighbor, and daughter, would often call me to go check on her on her bad days....i know it is stressfull and i admit i burned out caring for the clients....but that heartfelt personal touch of a care nurse goes beyond the actual job time... the last evening i was called, i found the lady at the bottom of her steps....it was like loosing one of my own grandparents.i always looked at this job with the want to do my very best because i know without a doubt that that person staring back will someday be my ownself... So i salute you and have to say the more i learn about you....the more i respect and admire you.


ButteryDelight 58F

6/6/2006 5:34 am

    Quoting MamChelle:
    BD,
    i was a cna in wv. for a five years doing exactly what you do.(plus my mother owned a personal care home where we had 9 patients) i worked for the community action medicade waiver program, in parkersburg WV. i had a client that had altzheimers, and suffered mostly from sundowners. Being that i lived only 2 streets over from her, the neighbor, and daughter, would often call me to go check on her on her bad days....i know it is stressfull and i admit i burned out caring for the clients....but that heartfelt personal touch of a care nurse goes beyond the actual job time... the last evening i was called, i found the lady at the bottom of her steps....it was like loosing one of my own grandparents.i always looked at this job with the want to do my very best because i know without a doubt that that person staring back will someday be my ownself... So i salute you and have to say the more i learn about you....the more i respect and admire you.
Chelle, It is a difficult job but I find it very rewarding. I also find I have to take "breaks" every so often when they die. Otherwise I too may have burn out. Right, now I am in one of those periods of my life where I don't have many clients. I will build back up to one a day as soon as I emotionally can handle it. Yesterday was difficult because even though it was amusing, I also felt guilt because I left her when she was so agitated. Thank you for you comments. I appreciate it.

Buttery Delight


ButteryDelight 58F

6/6/2006 5:37 am

    Quoting __JVT__:
    Buttery,
    I have a lot of respect for people who are able to work in health care and the things they have to see and go through in the course of their jobs. I know there is no way I could do what you are doing.
    We had a lady who came in everyday to take care of my grandmother until she wasn't able to live on her own anymore (at the age of 95) and the people at the nursing home who took care of her were great. I know my grandmother didn't always make their jobs pleasant (and neither did my mom who rode the nurses a little too hard at times...in my opinion ).
    She spent 97 yrs on this planet and I was lucky to have grown up next door to her.
JVT, It sounds like you loved your grandmother very much. I'm glad you enjoyed her for so many years.

Thank you for visiting and commenting.

Buttery Delight


ohcurious14 59M
1683 posts
6/6/2006 6:27 am

Anyone in the Nursing field I give nothing but praise to as they have to be so compassionate, to so many, yet not get attached to their patients, which you can't but help get that way. This guy admires you.


ButteryDelight 58F

6/6/2006 11:27 am

    Quoting ohcurious14:
    Anyone in the Nursing field I give nothing but praise to as they have to be so compassionate, to so many, yet not get attached to their patients, which you can't but help get that way. This guy admires you.
Ohcurious, Sir, I do get very attached to my patients and mourn them when they die as I would a family members death. I have been told by CNAs that work in the hospital, this attachment does not happen because you do not have the time to spend with them like you do when you are going to their home every day. I have wondered if perhaps I should switch to working in the hospitals because it is so difficult for me when they die.

Thank you for reading my blog and for commenting.

Buttery Delight


ohcurious14 59M
1683 posts
6/6/2006 12:17 pm

    Quoting ButteryDelight:
    Ohcurious, Sir, I do get very attached to my patients and mourn them when they die as I would a family members death. I have been told by CNAs that work in the hospital, this attachment does not happen because you do not have the time to spend with them like you do when you are going to their home every day. I have wondered if perhaps I should switch to working in the hospitals because it is so difficult for me when they die.

    Thank you for reading my blog and for commenting.

    Buttery Delight
Buttery, I do realize it is common knowledge that one is not supposed to get attached, but in all seriousness, how can you not? I saw first hand when my father was in Hospice care just how much compassion the Nursing Field has.
I certainly do enjoy reading your blog.


tillerbabe 55F

6/6/2006 12:34 pm

Yes...I apologize, this is a "copy and paste"..but I have so many people to thank. And, I'm so very tired.
...it is still very genuine nonetheless, I'm just sneaking through to say thank you, Thank You for your kind words in my blog and your well wishes for my Bri.


ButteryDelight 58F

6/6/2006 1:50 pm

    Quoting ohcurious14:
    Buttery, I do realize it is common knowledge that one is not supposed to get attached, but in all seriousness, how can you not? I saw first hand when my father was in Hospice care just how much compassion the Nursing Field has.
    I certainly do enjoy reading your blog.
Thank you, Ohcurious, Sir. I enjoy reading your blog as well..


wickedeasy 66F  
25458 posts
6/6/2006 1:51 pm

oh lordy - it reminded me of my exmother in law - foudn her taking a poop in the neighbor's yard one day - stark naked with a bag full of onion rings that she was decorating with - and she was a stone cold bitch at the best of times - when i tried to corral her, she kept throwing onion rings at me - god i laughed until i cried

i know it can be heart rending - but sometimes it is so much better to laugh than cry

hugs

WE

my dad also had alzheimers but he just turned into a sweetypie -

You cannot conceive the many without the one.


ButteryDelight 58F

6/7/2006 7:43 am

    Quoting wickedeasy:
    oh lordy - it reminded me of my exmother in law - foudn her taking a poop in the neighbor's yard one day - stark naked with a bag full of onion rings that she was decorating with - and she was a stone cold bitch at the best of times - when i tried to corral her, she kept throwing onion rings at me - god i laughed until i cried

    i know it can be heart rending - but sometimes it is so much better to laugh than cry

    hugs

    WE

    my dad also had alzheimers but he just turned into a sweetypie -
lol, Easy. That's too funny. The lady in this story has left me those kind of "presents" too. And YES! It is much better to laugh then it is to cry


ButteryDelight 58F

6/7/2006 7:58 am

    Quoting tillerbabe:
    Yes...I apologize, this is a "copy and paste"..but I have so many people to thank. And, I'm so very tired.
    ...it is still very genuine nonetheless, I'm just sneaking through to say thank you, Thank You for your kind words in my blog and your well wishes for my Bri.
You are welcome, tillerbabe. Lets us knwo how thigns are going.

Buttery Delight


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