What a ride!  Mary Ann was ready to get up at 7:15am today.  This time I did not ask her to stay in bed until the alarm was due to go off at 7:45am.  She had been sleeping for 36hours straight.  I decided I did not want to risk her falling asleep again for a number of hours.

I got her dressed right away; then washed her hair. She took pills and ate a good breakfast.  She let me feed her.  She did not seem to be hallucinating at all.  She was very lucid.  There was a some fainting, so after checking her blood pressure, I gave her a half tablet of Midodrine to help keep her blood pressure up.

Volunteer Elaine came to stay with Mary Ann this morning while I had my usual Sunday morning quiet time at the lake.  Elaine engaged her in conversation.  At some point while I was gone, she began reading to her, which Elaine was doing when I returned.  Mary Ann was leaning forward some, but Elaine just moved her back up regularly.  As a result, Mary Ann was awake all morning.

Mary Ann picked scrambled eggs and bacon from the options I gave her for lunch.  She ate every speck of it on her own.  By the time she was done with the small amount of Baskin & Robbins ice cream that was left from a few days ago, Volunteer Jan arrived.

This is the first of the monthly Beginning Birders’ field trips I have been able to make.  While I did not get a detailed report from Jan about how things went, Mary Ann was awake when I left and awake when I returned.  As far as I know they had some good quality time.

Jan brought food to heat for supper.  Since Mary Ann had been up all day, we decided to stay home rather than go to the Evening Service.  That way I was able to prepare what Jan had brought.  Again tonight, Mary Ann let me feed her supper.  She ate a full serving and followed it with one of two scoops of Baskin & Robbins ice cream that I had gotten for her two days ago.

You can do the math.  She ate three full meals today.  She also had part of an apple as a snack when Jan was here, and a snack of some coffee cake with Elaine just after I left for the lake.  Her body must be in shock from all the food!

If a person only had today as a reference point for Mary Ann’s health, they might wonder what all the fuss is about.  My gut has been yanked from one extreme to the other in a matter of hours.  I guess that is nothing new.  I felt good today also, knowing she was doing well.

There is a certain level at which there is frustration that today seems to make yesterday’s grieving a meaningless waste of time.   I remain convinced that feeling the feelings when they come is better than burying them, in case things might change.  In our situation, they will change.  The grieving I did yesterday still counts.  I know where this is going.  I probably know too much having read emails written by folks in the throes of the worst this dementia has to offer.  I know too much from forty years of ministering to people going through terrible times of pain and loss.

Yesterday provided some preparation that needed to be done.  There will be more that needs to be done as we move to new and still more difficult stages of the disease process.  Having gone through the reality therapy yesterday, having grieved more the anticipated losses, today is all the sweeter.  She got to have today.  I got to have today.

This morning’s time at the lake offered great entertainment in all the displays by the birds.  I read a very meaningful devotional piece in the Spirituality Journal called Weavings.  The sky was crystal clear and the air crisp.  All of it combined to lift my spirits.

There were American Bald Eagles to watch again.  I saw a drama unfold, as a juvenile Eagle spotted a Canada Goose with a broken wing, walking across a road less than a hundred feet from me.  The drama happened about 150 feet away.  The Canada Goose managed to ward off the Eagle as he tried to make lunch of the goose.  While the goose did not have the weapons the eagle had (talons and powerful beak) the goose was bigger and heavier.  Later I watched from fairly close range two Red-Tailed hawks fighting over a kill.

Then there were the White Pelicans.  They are huge and have a magnificent wing span.  Their wingspan can exceed nine feet, much larger than an eagle.  One Pelican circled around and around until it was almost overhead.  They are blindingly white (especially in this morning’s sun) with contrasting black on part of their wings.  It was quite a sight. There were a variety of waterfowl coming an going.  It was quite a treat.

This afternoon, the time with the birders at a different lake was another treat.  I learned more about identifying a few birds and enjoyed talking with other folks with like interests.  We spotted an eagle, some Mergansers, Redheads, Ring-necks and Golden Eye water birds – along with the ubiquitous Canada Geese, American Coots, Mallards and Ring-Billed gulls.

After such a good day, I must add that I just went in to check on Mary Ann.  The hallucinations have started again.  She agreed to manage a treasury of come sort and was afraid she had messed it up.  So much of the time there is nothing I can think of that even remotely connects with the hallucination or dream.  Then she fainted two or three times as we tried to get to and from the commode.  I will take her blood pressure in the morning to see if some Midodrine seems warranted.

I think I am going to get whiplash!

Tomorrow is the appointment with the Neurologist.  The report will be in tomorrow night’s post.  I am anxious to see how the appointment goes.

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