Sleep

Wednesday morning, December 28th:

Sleep would be good right about now. Sleep would have been good 2 1/2 hours ago.  I really like to sleep but right now just can’t manage to sleep. 

I have a good reason, my Mother was buried on Tuesday.  Knowing that is the reason doesn’t make it any easier. I fall asleep at 9:30 to 10 pm (never in years has my bedtime been so early). By 2 am I start to awake.  Then my mind clicks on and I am done.  I turn, I toss, I try everything I can think of and yet no sleep.   Then during the day, I am exhausted.  Lots of things to deal with and I can’t think clearly because I am sleepy.  Then the cycle will repeat itself.  It’s not helping that I have a bad cold and a cough. 

The ironic thing is that all the months I spent at my Mother’s home taking care of her I didn’t think I slept much.  She would sleep most of the day and never go to the bathroom more than 2 or 3 times during the whole day.  Then her bedtime would be when the sun went down but no later than 5:30 pm.  She would sleep soundly until sometimes around 10 pm and then start getting up to go to the bathroom at least one time each hour.  It didn’t matter if we gave her the lasix in the morning or afternoon, the same thing happened every night.  No one could figure out why.  My husband figured a lot of it was habit because she always got up 3 or 4 times to go to the bathroom even before she got sick.  I think that was part of it but the other part was with her 2 minute memory, she would wake up and not realize she had just went to the bathroom.  She didn’t remember that she had just laid down from the prior time (that happened often, every 15 minutes she would get up and go).

So every night the same thing happened.  Her up and down would start before I went to bed.  She would meet me in the hall and say “you haven’t been in bed yet” – and I would reply nope it’s only 9 pm or 10 pm or whenever.  I would usually head to bed around 11:30 or midnight.  Then fall asleep just to hear her walker hit the floor, then she would say something to the poor dog just trying to rest by her bed, head to the bathroom, turn on the light, go, get water, turn off the light and head back to bed.  We always did not get up because she could handle it by herself.  But we would just stay in bed and listen for all the steps she would always do.  If something was out of the normal, then we would get up.  I never thought I got good sleep but obviously I was wrong. 

I used to listen and dread the sound of the walker and her getting up over and over again.  But as her condition got worse and worse, and she could no longer get up without help, I would have welcomed the sound of the walker and her talking. 

Then towards the end, some nights she only got up a time or so and one night she did not get up at all.  Signs of problems with her kidneys, not good at all. 

Now she’s gone and I thought it would be easy to sleep now, but it’s 6 am and I have been up for hours.  Somehow or other, I need to move past this and try to find my new normal life.  For so long my world has centered around my Mother and her care that I feel lost.  Now that the funeral is over, maybe I can begin to move past it all and find my life.  It’s kind of sad that for all the months I lived with her all I wanted to do was not have to do it and now I just want to be back in my old childhood bed hearing her walker hit the floor and that annoying talking start.

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About TheClothesAreInTheStove

I am a wife, mother, grandmother, and daughter. My husband has retired and I work part-time at an outside job and until 12/23/11 worked full-time as my Mother's caregiver. I started this blog as a way to cope with my Mother's illness, dementia and death. I have always had to urge to write down every significant event in my life. Over the years I have jotted down notes on calendars, in journals, on little sheets of paper and now this blog. I am so afraid that if I don't write it down I will forget and it will be lost forever. My Mother's decline is so important and so painful but it happened and it can't be forgotten. Hopefully it will help someone else deal a little bit better - it helps to know that what you are feeling is ok and that what you feel is not unique. Others have different experiences but this is my experience.
This entry was posted in caregiver, Confusion, Death, Dementia, Grief, Hospice, Illness and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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