Thursday, July 01, 2004

8 new job, butterflys, brain glue

07-01-04 Mayatime: 3 Chicchan 8 Tzec (Burner day)

The good news is, I have a job. The bad news is, it’s telemarketing. It’s not calling homes, though, it’s calling businesses to sell advertising, and it’s at a very small newspaper so I have hopes of moving into a writer/editor position someday. I need the money desperately. It’s part time, so I can still work on my novel (and this blog) and if I need to, take care of my dad. I went over my parents’ house to tell them the good news and my dad wasn’t home. My mom wasn’t sure where he was (he’s never been great at leaving notes) and it was past time for his brain pill. We started getting worried around 5 p.m. but then he came home. We talked about the butterflies in the garden. He can wrap his mouth around those Latin butterfly names but he can’t remember Red Lobster is where we ate on Sunday.

I tried to encourage him to take photos of the garden and the butterflies with the nice 35mm camera I got them a few years ago, but he didn’t seem into it. I read a book yesterday called “New Hope for People with Alzheimer’s and their Caregivers” (it’s part of a medical series). It is pretty good. It talked about alternative therapies as well as conventional ones, including diet and herbs and supplements of all kinds. I would recommend it as a beginner’s book (which I certainly am).

I told my mom how, according to the New Hope book, that I now have double the chance of getting Alzheimer’s because Daddy has it. She didn’t believe me. She said I should have a kid so it could take care of me when I'm old. What a terrible reason to have a child. No, I should join the Hemlock Society, that’s what I should do. That’s got to be even worse than having a kid hoping to beat the 25% odds and get a matching kidney. The New Hope book talked about some tests that apparently my father should have gotten and didn’t. I want him to have those tests (cognitive) as a benchmark, as a way to test if the medicine is helping. It’s giving him headaches along the side of his head, which I told my mom to treat with her new Reiki. My mom said it seems like he’s going downhill fast and she doesn’t believe the medicine is working. I have another theory.

I believe that #1 my mother and I were blind/in denial and now our eyes are open and #2 my dad was hiding his condition, either deliberately or on purpose and #3 now that he KNOWS he has something wrong with him, he’s not trying anymore. He’s given up. We have to beat #3. My mom says he acts like he’s a teenager, not an adult (coloring his sneakers because he couldn’t get the color he wanted, for instance). I pointed out that I told him to color his sneakers. I want to get him coloring books, which I think I mentioned, but the New Hope book said AD people find them offensive. Hmm. I happen to like to color and I’m not embarrassed to say so.

He seemed pretty much okay to me (as okay as he gets) over supper. He fixated on the butterflies, which isn’t unusual for him, but he knew their names and could describe them to me. He got confused and thought I worked at a restaurant, not at the newspaper. He asked me what my name was when I worked at 99 House. I had mentioned 99 House only because I dropped something off for some one I know who works there. We told him several times that I work at a newspaper. Perhaps it will stick, perhaps not. It’s not really important, is it? The New Hope book said basically that the glue which sticks new thoughts into the mind stops functioning. I just don’t want him going into 99 and looking for me. I am looking into a medic alert bracelet for him. The Alzheimer’s site talks about a wandering person registry, it’s $40. I think it would be $40 well spent. (665)

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