...unless you count Sunday when I will head back to Mississippi for at least a week, maybe more. No, things are not that much better here, in fact, they are worse. I had just about the worst day of my life--or if not the worst, it ranks right on up there with the other one--yesterday. Without going into detail, just be aware that narcotic pain medication in an 88-year-old man who is already frail and with decreased cognitive functioning, the hallucinations are a bear.
Good news is Dad has been able to move his leg without screaming in pain, and is even doing some exercises, bending it, lifting it, and can shift himself in the bed now to reposition, without assistance. Small miracles for which to be grateful. When someone is working with him like in therapy, he is more lucid, and does pretty well.
The other good news is that our caregiver is back for this next week, and we have lined up enough temporary help that I can go home this week. I will have to return in another week or maybe two, but can be prepared for travel this time, and we don't want to waste my leave time when we have the help. And there is that issue of I do have a job to do and when I am not there doing it, someone else has to fill in for me. Ever since I got to Mississippi in 2003, however, there has not been a semester that I have not covered for someone, including teaching anywhere from a few weeks to half a semester when something happened. I kind of feel like I have earned it through my contributions, even if I did not have leave to which I am entitled. We are good to help each other--guess it is the nature of our profession.
My job for today is to dig a dry well and trench it out so we can do a gravel fill. Yes, ecology methods were active "in the country" before they became so popular with environmentalists. But, like all things country, nothing lasts forever. And, like I said before, we each have our talents. Mine lie in this arena when I am here. While I have been an effective social worker, and have worked with many patients in facilities who are far more impaired than Dad right now, those skills are not generally workable in a family--particularly one in which the patient knows you are his daughter even in his hallucinations, and thus, just wants you to do what he asked you to do, which is totally impossible when you cannot see the lever or cable or brake he wants you to pull, push, or whatever. Pretty frustrating for both of us.
The rain is beginning, so it looks like I have a reprieve from digging a dry well--but that is only going to make the need for it that much greater. I might just have to put on Dad's rain gear and go dig it anyway.