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Alis girls

Feeling fraught!

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Havent posted for a while. My elderly uncle was admitted to hosp 2 weeks ago with blood in urine. Hes been under the weather for months and hadnt been to the GP for 15yrs!!! My aunt finally got GP to see him and he was found to be very anaemic. Several bags of blood and 2 ops later still waiting for outcome of biopsy of a tumour in his bladder. I saw him last weekend (hes in East Midlands I'm in London) and hes a shell of his former self. Gone is the irritating man who loved banter and was very opinionated but had a good heart and would help anyone. Theres a confused old man who is scared stiff. I tried to get some info from the nurses but didnt get far :wall: Elderly aunt ( his wife and another opinionated old dear) was down with a version of novo virus this week and couldnt visit. I spoke to her yesterday and she sounded awful really low. I rang her today and offered to drive up again this weekend but she said no shes fine and my dad is coming down this weekend to us but lives a few miles from her so was happy to go up and check them all out. :shock:

I have told her in no uncertain terms not to accept my uncle out until shes got help organised and until uncle can do stairs (if hes able to) as shes got her own health issues. I know how fast the NHS turfs old folk out of hospital as I work in a Gp;s surgery and we pick up the pieces.

 

I am angry with uncle for not seeing his GP when this first started - he wasnt right last Christmas and i think he may have early onset Alz. I think she knows this but wont admit to me. They have no children and she feels very much alone and she was close to my mum who died 20 years ago. She wanted to find a bungalow with a warden but uncle wasnt keen. Bless her shes struggling and I am trying to offer as much support as poss. OH has been great - listened to me tossing and turning and giving a hug when I had a little cry this week. Difficult to get time off work as no hols left. Sorry for long post - I know a lot of you are in a "sandwich" situation where you have kids and old folk to support. Thanks for listening Ali xx

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Gosh, I do feel for you, its such a worry. All I can say is take one step at a time to stop everything getting on top of you, and it all seeming overwhelming. I guess this means getting the physical problem sorted out first, ie kowing the outcome of the biopsy so you can all plan accordingly. You are close family, so I cannot see why there should be a problem in allowing you to know this, although my personal experience is that you have to be tough, persistent and don't take 'no' for an answer in order to get through to some people. You have done the right thing about the discharging, your aunt is obviously not able at the moment to support her husband, and the question is could she do it anyway without help (eg physical stuff like lifting, is this required?); if not, then some sort of package of social care needs to be worked out. I also know how difficult this is, but you just have to keep the end goal in sight, and don't let yourself be deterred. I'd also say let the rest of your family help as much as possible, its good your Dad will be there (is your uncle his brother?) there is no point in being heroic about this, you will burn out and there is sense in the old adage about sharing trouble. Which brings me to the last point - that's what we are here for, so don't worry about that :D Sending you hugs and fortitude.

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Thanks Daphne - my mum was aunts sister. I am an only child no one to share load not that it seems to make a difference in some famillies OH's included. They are in their 80's - my dad has mild vascular dementia and is fine one minute and then throws a "funny" (hes due one!) esp if attention isnt on him. So far so good. Anyway aunt will call tonight with latest news. I am not next of kin so they wont tell me anything but I did tell the sister concerns re the confusion which might have been the anaesthetic but who knows.

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Lots of hugs to you. That's the trouble with older folks. It's frustrating but it's the way they are sometimes. My grandfather wouldn't get help for my nan when she had a really bad session of gastro enteritis. She was so badly dehydrated by the time he decided to ring mum and by the time mum dashed down there she found nan in bed with her lips like blackberries. She had the ambulance to hospital and was in there well over a week. Same thing when she had her last heart attack - he didn't call anyone until he decided to wander to the neighbours. Of course it was too little too late.

With my mum, she rang me at 2.30am to ask if she should call an ambulance for my dad. I went round and found him on the floor by the bed whimpering in pain. I rang the emergency service and they said how long had he been like it. She told me and I said WHAT!!! And then told them - since lunchtime the day before and they said WHAT!!!! So the ambulance came really fast. But it was too late, a couple of days later he'd gone with blood poisoning (from internal scar tissue creating a blockage in his system and the toxins had set to work). Can't help it - I still blame her even though I am on an OK basis of sorts with her. Would it have made a difference if she wasn't in denial? Probably not, but you wouldn't leave an animal in that condition. Then this is the same person that dished out medicine with sugar to me - Friars Balsam. I have since found that it is for external use only but that's what she gave me every time I was ill. I hated the smell and the taste was worse - but she was in her 30's then!

So it's difficult to understand what goes on in their heads sometimes but I do think they keep calm and carry on!

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Spoke to my aunt last night - a Doctor from Stoke hosp is coming to see uncle about the aneurysm on a vein (forgot to mention) he would have to go there to have it sorted - she cant travel there. She sounded brighter - no news yet on biopsy - I did wonder if they are not telling her things in case she cant cope. The thing is she has got a fair bit of support and I think she fears the worse. Had a wobble today - went to garden centre with OH and dad and decided to look round Christmas stuff (In October! really!) had to walk out as felt tearful. I just things would move a bit. My aunt was going to look at warden controlled bungalows today. I think shes thinking longterm which is good. Thanks for good wishes. x

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Thought I would update. My uncle is now terminally ill - his cancer cannot be cured - the nurse who was caring for him yesterday asked to speak to me - they thought I was his daughter. She had sussed I was a nurse. The cancer is in the pelvis and as fast as they pump blood in to him by infusion it comes out in his urine. To add to that he has an aortic aneurysm which if he were to arrest and they tried CPR would rupture and kill him. The doctor chose to tell my aunt all this on her 80th birthday (he felt awful when he found out) and she is one of those people who keeps her feelings inside. they felt she hadnt taken it on board. She had as I found out later. Nurse and Doctors prefer tears than silence. I said I would speak to her and did driving her to dads after the hospital. She had taken every bit on board. We talked and I told her the Macmillan nurse would be on board soon to speak to her. I think she will push for hospice care. Theres a nice one in Glenfield - Loros. I then told my dad this morning and that was worse as he filters info and then says no one tells him anything. :roll: My aunt wants no one else to know - not sure why. Told dad to tell them hes anaemic and has an aneurysm.

To add to all that my cousins husband dropped dead last week - she dies 3 yrs ago. What a nice way to go. No suffering.

And on top of that my YS was attacked by another child on friday - he fought back - the head of yr is involved. I had promised to go to East Mids before that happened and OH stayed home with him. He will take him to school tomorrow. I am worried as this child who attacked him walks past our house. I am somewhat on edge and ready to throttle him if he lays a finger again on my son.

The talking while driving I found easier as I had to keep my wits about me and knew she was not having to make eye contact probably helped her too. I reached over and squeezed her hand. Sorry to have such a sad post -thanks for reading. xxx

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Thanks had to offload. Otherwise I will cry - I cried last night in bed and again whilst back home and trying to read paper. Every tried reading MOS thro tears. Not to be recommended.

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Oh Alisgirls what an awful time you're having. I find driving through tears the worst thing!

 

Try to take some time out for yourself and remember that things won't be like this forever x

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I'm so sorry to hear what a rough time you're having.

It's so hard trying to support people when a family member is terminally ill. When my my Mum was dying, I found it very difficult to keep my own emotions in check whilst looking after everyone else. You need to let it all out now and then and take comfort that you're obviously doing your very best for everyone concerned.

 

I'm sorry to hear about your Son too and I hope that he will be supported and protected by his school. I'm sure it feels like an extra worry you could do without at the moment and you must feel very torn.

 

Take good care of yourself.

Sending lots of love xx

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Oh dear you are having a tough time, really feel for you. You are obviously doing loads for lots of people so don't be hard on yourself, no wonder you need to off load and cry, better to let it out. Sending lots if virtual hugs xx

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Thinking of you and hoping that things resolve for you very soon (I havn't been in the situation that you are in with your uncle but do fully appreciate your feelings regarding YS - I'd want to throttle any little so and so who laid a finger on either of mine; that maternal instinct is so strong.) Keep posting to get it out of your system!

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Thanks everyone - feeling less emotional this am - have to be as off to work so in professional mode. Thanks for good wishes and sorry for being so OTT emotionally. My priority is my son - have emailed head of year asking for action especially as since found out this boy might have been holding a compass in his hand (not the north-south type) and son had scratch on face. If they dont handle it well I am asking police for advice as this was assault IMO. Ali xx

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Well long overdue up date.

Son and his fight partner spent a day in solitary (cell like affair ) for fighting. Son hated it and I said thats what prison is like so learn a lesson. Having said that if anyone hits him I tell him to hit back.

I spoke to aunt today as she and uncle normally come to me for Christmas Day. Asked her if she wanted us to go to hers and OH and I would cook. She wasnt keen on that idea probably thought we would make a mess. Shes going to hospital and will have her lunch there. It occured to me after she would be alone on Boxing day but I suspect she will do the same and go to hospital. She asked us (me OH and 2 sons) to go to her on the sunday after Boxing day. I am not happy re attempting to cook lunch at dads as the cooker is old and I only have his word that it works. We will drive up and spend day there and see uncle and then come back in evening. My dad who's been bending my ear about Christmas and what were we doing blah blah will be content he can plan his time. I was a bit terse with him as I wasnt willing to make decision till I had spoken to her. This is assuming my uncle is still with us.

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Sorry further update - got call from Aunt to say hes being transferred to Stoke to as consultant wants to look at aneurysm to see if something can be done . He still passing blood and very anaemic. I was not happy transferring a 80 something old man at some ungodly hour on a cold winters night. Spoke to the nurse who I spoke to before and asked her why so rushed. Hes not nil by mouth - weekend coming up and my aunt wouldnt be able to drive there everyday. The nurses too had raised issues about moving him - why the rush? One nurse was in tears as she felt it was unkind to move him so late. It appears they had spoken to him and hes keen to be given this lifeline. He fully understood the reasons. I hope they will operate this weekend but not holding my breath. Gave my aunt the extra info. She bless her doesnt ask questions.

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Hope they can do something for him Ali. I really feel for you, it's even harder when you're some distance away.

Look after yourself and offload anything non-essential if you can. Who cares if Christmas dinner isn't quite as fancy as usual or if the decorations don't all get put up - it'll still all happen.

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My thoughts are with you. These are tough times for your poor uncle and aunt, and for you. He sounds so frail and sick and I guess no amount of reassurance is really going to help calm the nerves, but just do/don't do whatever feels right to you. Its important at times like this to be true to yourself. I do hope it works out well for you all.

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I hope they can make him a little more comfortable. Feel sorry for all of you. Lots of hugs as you must be all worried.

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