This week has been especially rough with mom. She suddenly has bounds of energy and her happy feet have gotten even happier. She used to only try to go out walking in the mornings (walking to the store, her sister's house, etc) but this week it has been an all day ordeal. And even after she's gone out once already in the day, she is anxious to get out again in the afternoon (once a day used to be her limit). I have my theory as to why. I'll share that in my next post.
On Monday, I became very nervous when I arrived at mom's house and found her putting on her bra; that is the sure sign that she is ready to get out of the house. She informed me that she was waiting until 11:00 and then she would go get her exercise. I don't have a problem keeping up with her, but I had a busy three-year-old to drag along with me and I wasn't sure I could wrangle both of them. I made a couple of phone calls (for back up) with no luck and then plopped down on the couch, trying to figure out my game plan. It was my lucky day. Just before 11, dad pulled up to the house; apparently he was done working early. I breathed a sigh of relief and warned my dad that mom was planning her escape. I wasn't sure where she planned on going, as she had no money that I knew of, but she had mentioned the name "Marty" in her mumblings to me earlier. Marty is a family friend from church, who lives in the next neighborhood up. I was pretty certain that mom wouldn't be able to remember which house was hers.
Well...to make a really long story short, mom tried leaving the house several times that day. Dad hid her purse and coat to prevent her from leaving, and though she was pretty angry about it and frantically searching for her belongings, she ultimately decided she didn't need those things where she was going. She stood in the living room, looking out the window, the wheels in her head obviously turning. In a flash, mom darted out the front door and was sprinting up the street. My dad hopped in his truck and drove alongside her as she tried to navigate her way to Marty's house. At some point, she made some wrong turns and when dad knew that she wasn't going to give up, he steered her in the right direction. Upon arrival at Marty's house, mom marched right in the door without even so much as a knock. Fortunately, nobody was home (either that or they were hiding in the back room, lol) but dad was not amused that she was walking into someone's house uninvited. Can you imagine if he hadn't been with her to show her the right house??
Once dad returned home with mom, she ate her lunch and took a nap. When she got up from her nap, she was at it again. She sat at her computer games for a couple of minutes here and there but was distracted with ideas of more grand adventures outside the house. My dad blocked the front door several times, but as soon as his back was turned, she was out the door again. This time we hopped in my van and drove together. As I pulled over to the curbside a few feet in front of mom, dad quickly moved around the car (while I opened the back sliding door and set the child locks) and pulled her into the van. She struggled and was half-upset, half-giggly that dad was abducting her and seat-belting her down. She attempted to open the door but she was no match for my child locks. It's a good thing the neighbors know us or we may have been facing kidnapping charges ;)
My dad and I had an errand to run together after that last incident, and my sister came to the house to "mommysit". In the two hours that we were gone, Christina spent most of that time guarding the front door and thwarting mom's efforts of getting away.
That was the start of the week...and just about every day since. I'm really not too sure what transpired today, since I left out of town for a wedding. But for the past 3 days we've been chasing down mom. On Tuesday, we had a new caregiver at the house who didn't notice mom escape through the garage door. I got a call from the manager at the grocery store informing me that mom was up there, alone, ripping open boxes of Sleep Aid medicine. Apparently she found a stash of my dads change and it was just enough to buy her a bottle of pills. Later that afternoon, I went to check on her after I picked up my kids from school (we had nobody else to cover the afternoon) and I found the front door slightly ajar and the house empty. Thankfully, the Avon lady/mom's friend found her and brought her back home (she was trying to track her down for more eyeliner). Yesterday she took an escape to nowhere while that same friend (Avon lady) sat at the house with her. They ended up taking a walk around the block.
So, after an exhausting week, we have been working diligently on refiguring her caregiving situation. It seemed to be working to only have a caregiver scheduled in the morning but she obviously needs supervision 24/7 now. We have some great ladies from church who have been coming over and helping out, along with some family members, but we still have a lot of time unaccounted for. We are in the process of hiring some other caregivers to fill in the gaps and should have that all straightened out by next week. In the meantime, my dad has his hands full!!