Monday, 22 March 2010

What did you say? I told you so.

As might be obvious, Dr P is a man of strong will, somewhat disinclined to accept suggestions (helpful OR otherwise). In the last year or so, as he has become more dependent on me, I have become rather more assertive and insistent. Needs must. What a pity it has taken so long. In fact, it does seem that my being more assertive has made life together more pleasant. He likes feisty people. (So why did he pick me?)

Yesterday he had an appointment with an audiologist, and we have come away feeling rather better about the world, and what is left to us of it. The audiologist managed to get him to insert the other hearing aid, which Dr P had insisted would not go into his ear. Somehow or other it went straight in. He gave him a hearing test, and adjusted the hearing aid to give him overall better hearing. Dr P has lost about 50 per cent of his hearing. By the end of the consultation, both the audiologist and I were able to speak to Dr P in normal to soft voices, and he could hear us! All that has to happen now is to keep the hearing aids - both of them - in his ears, and let his brain adjust to having sound in both ears. We are going back in a month, so there is an incentive to Keep At It. Furthermore, he does not need to buy a new super-duper hearing aid yet. This is indeed balm to the thrifty soul.

I should have got him there sooner, of course, but could not face the battle. This time Dr P accepted it all quite meekly and mildly. Of course, having been a doctor himself, he knew perfectly well that the audiologist was right. This morning he put in both hearing aids without having to be reminded to do so. I am still speaking loudly to him, and he winces. He is playing bridge today and it will be interesting to discover what the experience was like.

I have been advised to note various things about Dr P's ageing process, and the deterioration in his memory, so there is an accurate record. There have been quite a few changes in the last 6 months. It is now necessary to help him be better organised, and to devise ways of overcoming the problems of the memory loss, and difficulty in concentrating. Where did he put his visa statement? Is there enough money in the account to pay for it? This year he had a a lot of trouble doing his tax return, even with an extension of time for it. As well as forgetfulness, he is becoming somewhat confused about his finances, so an eye must be kept on that.

Yesterday we did a bit of tidying of his desk. This has always been a total no-go, verboten, keep out, MYOB, don't even think about touching anything sort of area. I tidied so much we filled a waste-paper bin, and was able to wash the surface of the desk. Of course, I am not as organised and methodical as I might be. I'd blame the ageing process if it were not for the fact that my deficiencies go back a long time, and I am in fact much better than I used to be - shamed into it by Dr P's superior practices. All the same there is now a much greater need to become more systematic and organised, and to watch very carefully. I need to remember to buy a notebook in which to record observations. Another excuse to go to OfficeWorks.

Stationery shops are wonderful and enticing places, full of products no home should be without. Little sticky notes, notebooks, highlighter pens, tags to stick on the music scores, memory sticks, magazine boxes, and the like. It is possible to while away significant chunks of time in such shop, and to spend far more than planned. Afterwards, of course, comes the hard work of sorting and filing. Those lovely coloured plastic folders are such a help. Once the decision is made as to which colour to use for each category, and to be able to remember the decision and stick to it, that is.

We have had a week of visitors, with SD3 staying a couple of nights. She is now in her house on the south coast with her partner, and various other family members will gather there. The WSD is to arrive on 3 April, and the rest of her family will catch up with her later. I am struggling not to feel sick about that visit. My second daughter will also be around at the same time, for her photographic work and for me to mind the children. She and my granddaughter were here overnight on Saturday. Poor little Jessica had a virus, and a high temperature, so she fluctuated between lassitude and high jinks. As they do. We had a very pleasant time together, the illness notwithstanding. Lots of cuddles, and chats. Lots of love.


Relatively Retiring said...

Oh the joy of stationery shops. I cannot resist a bit of paper!

That's an achievement - if the hearing aids go in and stay in. Even more so if they are switched on!

I do feel for you in all this. Your life evokes so many echoes of my own.

Anonymous said...

I've found myself making several jaunts to Officeworks lately for any old excuse. So very soothing.

molly said...

Office supply stores are like toy shops---all those lovely things to play with! Notebooks and pens of all descriptions, and paper in every colour....hmmm! Almost as good as fabric shops.

What progress---to finally get him to put the hearing aid in the other ear!

Pam said...

Yes, yes, I love stationery too!

meg said...

Yes, stationery shops are wonderful places. I love to have plenty of lovely notebooks.. using them is another matter altogether.
I also love Bunnings. So many useful tools for various projects and tips for making life easier. Now that I am no longer the handyman, I get a little less joy here.
Thankful for the hearing aids. It is so tiring having to raise one's voice all the time. Now I find Gom often sneaks on aid out, or turns them off, and I am reduced to shouting again.