Thursday, February 28, 2019

Help Promote, Send a Picture or a Video.

Get creative!

Read in the sea, 
by a tree, 
with me, 
sitting on a giant pea... 

Read it with your dog, 
on a log, 
knee deep in bog, 
next to a frog...

Read it in a chair, 
on the stairs, 
at the fair...

Snap a picture or video yourself reading your favorite part of Alzheimer's Trippin' with George



I am excited about a promotion idea and I HOPE that you will get excited too.  I think it will be fun!

I will talk about that first and then, after that,  I will give you a peek into what is happening now.

Video Trailer


I have learned that books have to have trailers now days. Just like a movie.

 I bought one for cheap.   It is actually pretty good, considering.  I will share it in the next post, it isn't quite done yet.

But I got an idea of just a video showing people reading Alzheimer's Trippin' with George.  Maybe I will add it to the professional video I have or make one on its own... who knows.

BUT I would like to get pictures and videos of YOU or your pets or strangers
reading the book. Please send your pictures and videos to Susan_trikes at yahoo.   Put "Video Trailer" in the subject line so I know it is ok to click on the attachment.


 If you are brave, post the video or picture on you facebook page and tag me (Susan Straley) so I will see the video or picture and can get it.
  This should be FUN!!!   Maybe I will have a VIDEO REVEAL PARTY and invite everyone who submits a picture or video.

Spread the word! 

Share your book around with those that don't have a copy but are willing to pose or become a film star in the trailer.  Share the link to this blog around.  Remember to hit the "JOIN" tab above if you didn't get an email about this blog you are not on the list!  You get on the list by joining.

DEADLINE! DEADLINE! 
Gotta have an end date, don't we?
Submit your stuff by midnight March 19, 2019.

Now you may be thinking...

What NON-Book stuff is happening, Sue?

I have made a decision!  Pretty epic for me, Miss Indecisive.

I don't want to live anywhere else.  I love it here.

My sister or someone told me after George passed to not make any big decisions but instead, create folders of ideas of what I might do.  Then for the first year just gather information about each option and put it in its respective folder.

I created three folders.

STAY HERE
MOVE (to where the job pay is better and a college town for continued learning)
BUY A CAMPER (live South in the winter, North in the summer, finding part-time seasonal jobs)

But there are two deterrents to moving.
1) FRIENDS
2) This is an affordable place to live right now.


Today I went on our usual Thursday bike ride.  And Debra had invited a bunch of us gals to turn off and do a girls only picnic ride.  It was a lot of fun.


Another couple friends (Dementia Divas) had their husbands pass.  I went to a funeral, and then I invited the new widows and my fellow "Dementia Diva Graduates" or ... what do I call us now, "Wacky Widows"? over for dinner and it was a great time of sharing and celebrating in our accomplishments as we move forward in our lives.





I still hang out with my friends, Debra and Glen.  They are dealing with health issues and I am working on book stuff, so we don't hang out as much.  PLUS so many of our friends from up north are here, so our social calendars get pretty full with dinners, and music, and rides and such. 

Frankie and Dennis and Debra and Glen and I went to a concert downtown a few weeks ago.  Frankie and I did some wild dancing.  I guess it got too wild, Frankie hurt her knee and couldn't bike much while it healed.

Back to the Books



I am looking forward to getting pictures and video... there I go again... thinking about the books project.


I am sorry, I feel driven.  Don't know why or what I am trying to accomplish.  There is no end goal, I am just driven to keep moving in this direction.  I fear getting obnoxious. 

Maybe the entrepreneur spirit in George got transferred to me.

Coming Events


I have been invited to be interviewed on Gary Solomon's Laidback Bike Report... a YouTube show all about recumbent bikes and riding them.  So tune in on March 17th.  I will share the link in a future post.

March 23, 10 a.m., Cattle Dog Coffee Roasters, Tompkins St., Inverness book launch celebration.
 
I will have a table as part of the local authors program at the libraries in Citrus County, FL

April 8 1:30-4:30 at the Crystal River Library
April 9 1:30-4:30 at the Inverness Library



After the first book's kindle launch I will be taking Ice Cream to Memory Lane to celebrate with those folks.  That was our dementia support group that helped George and I so much in our last year. 



Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Riding Writing Flying

Yesterday I went and rode the Van Fleet Trail.  It is one of my favorite trails.  Some people find it boring, so very straight and not a single hill.  But it goes through the Green Swamp.  So we get to see wildlife.

Yesterday I saw a wild turkey and three very LARGE otter.  I rode with a trike group that was visiting our area.  There were two velo-mobiles riding with us.


I AM FEELING CELEBRITY

I got a poem from Kathie Heimsoth, my neighbor and fellow author.  She framed it for me.


Last week Heather that takes pictures for the trail newsletter was out with her camera.  Then I got my picture on the Withlacoochee Trail facebook page!  I love the picture.


GOOD FEEDBACK

And I have to share this news.  So excited to get good feedback on my book.  The book club in my neighborhood chose my book for their April book to read and discuss.  I gave them two copies to pass around.  One of the guys wrote me an email today and said, "I am reading your book and I can't put it down."

What a lovely thing to say.

I feel driven.  Even though I published this book just to publish it, now I am so anxious and excited to get it into the hands of people who will enjoy it and/or benefit from it that I can't relax.  Even when I was on the Van Fleet I wanted to turn around and come home and work on promotion, perfection.

When I uploaded the kindle version I found the pictures got real small.  So now, I have to go through picture by picture on my computer and then go through the kindle uploading process again.  Lots of work.

MY CELL PHONE

In the meantime my cell phone went dead.  I think I bought it in August!  Already I have had it in for repair once and now again it does (fell out of my pocket and it rained).  So I ordered a new one.   I did not know that I HAVE TO BE HOME to get the delivery.  The shipper, Tracfone, won't let me sign ahead of time, or sign on line, or even go to the Fed Ex place and pick it up.  ARG!

In the meantime I have not text, no cell phone, no way of picking up my messages.  I feel my reputation is at stake.  Not able to respond in a timely manner.  I lost one airport transportation gig because I didn't have a cell phone.

TODAY

I am going to the library.  They are video-taping local authors for a kind of "meet the author" video project they are doing.  If they put it online I will share it with you, or not... depending on how much I mess up.

SALES PITCH

The Kindle version of the first book is only $2.99 until March 21st.  Then it launches and the price goes up to $9.99.  So if you want to get the kindle or gift the kindle version, do it now.  Just click and scroll down until you see the covers and pick a cover.  Same book, two covers.   Once you get to Amazon, pick the kindle version.

SHARE
If you know anyone you think might want to follow the blog to learn when I publish the 2nd book, just share this with them or urge them to click the "join" tab above.  Thanks for being with me as I continue this journey.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Neighbors, Friends, Simultaneous Published Authors!

What fun it was this fall when my biking friend and neighbor returned to Florida to announce that she had just published her first book.  ME TOO! I said.  Well, almost.  It officially releases March 21, 2019. 






Alzheimer's Trippin' with George - book 1 in the series - is now available to order and receive in paperback.

THE KINDLE

The kindle is  ready for pre-release orders.  Then it is sent to people's devices on March 21st.  On that date, the price goes way up!

If I get 100 pre-orders and some good reviews, then Amazon will take notice and start helping promote the book.  Which would be great if more beginning caregivers could find it and feel more confident and competent because of it.

SPEAKING OF...

I have now three speaking engagements at Alzheimer's Caregiver Support Groups in the area.

The first one is this week!

If these go well I will be looking for engagements in other areas of the state.

I stopped in at Trailside.bike where I used to work while caring for George.  They agreed to carry my books, so I will be taking some down there to them.

Today I registered to sell with the Florida Department of Revenue.  Who knew there was all this stuff to take care of when trying to spread the word about the books.

This means I can have books for sale at the speaking engagements and at the book launch celebrations!  Yeah!

And I am excited to announce that MLE has agreed to sing at the book launch event.  This is a 14 year old aspiring singer. mlemusic.net/


If you haven't done so already, be sure to click on the JOIN tab (above) and fill out the form to be notified when I post news on this site.  I am working on being more efficient and techy.  Learning learning learning...

Enjoy your moments!

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Reflections on the Cover Reveal Video


If you had trouble getting the Book Cover Reveal Video to work, Click Here to watch it.

I had so much fun!  Thank you for sharing in this moment with me.

The morning after the reveal I recorded another video.  And below that are the links to the book on Amazon. 

Don't forget to leave a fair review on Amazon!  I need those to get suggested to folks by Amazon.  Just one or two sentences is all that is needed to help others find the book.  If you can, use one or two of these key words in your review so others that you think might enjoy the book can find it!  Alzheimer's, Caregiving, Travel and Trikes. 

I especially need reviews from folks who love someone with Alzheimers, are Caregivers, or who ride trikes and biketrails.



Some people had trouble playing the video last night so if this video doesn't play for you, try this link.

To get to the Amazon page with the sunset cover, click the picture below.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1795450479/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00__o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

To get to the Amazon page with the joy in the convertible cover, click on the picture below.

https://www.amazon.com/Alzheimers-Trippin-George-Diagnosis-Discovery/dp/1733546502/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=


Back to talking about the party.  Max Schulman, who co-wrote three books about Citrus Trails came with champagne so we could all toast after the video played.  Neato! 

And then Helen Ciampi stood up, she leads the Floral City Support group and she announced that I would be speaking at their meeting on February 15.  So much support!

I am so excited to finally have the books up and available.  It has been a roller coaster ride of joy and frustration.  But then, I should be used to that caring for George on the Withlacoochee Trail the last few years.

I think if you have a gmail account you can follow this blog.  And whenever you want to check in, it is now under the url www.susanstraley.com That will help!

Enjoy your moments, they are finite.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Cover Choice Revealed... or maybe not... WATCH!

It is so exciting to be sharing our story.  Publishing this first book on Amazon has been a learning experience.

For those who have been asking, yes you WILL be able to order the paperback and have it in time for the book launch party at Cattle Dog in Inverness, Florida, USA at 10:00 a.m. on March 23, 2019.   The Kindle will be available for pre-order and will download to your device (as I understand) on the launch date, March 21st.  So,YES! I will be able to sign books at the launch parties.  

Please spread the word, as  a portion of my proceeds will be donated to Alzheimer's research and/or Caregiver relief/respite.

Mark your calendar!  The video to reveal the cover choice premiers at 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time U.S.A. on Monday, February 4th.

If video doesn't work, click here!



Sunday, January 27, 2019

Alzhiemer' Trippin' With George Release Date Set

I am excited. You are excited.

The local County-wide paper did an article about the book and the launch party.


Launch celebration is set at Cattle Dog in Inverness at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 23rd.  There will be coffee and mini-muffins and folks chatting. 

Since this is my first book on Amazon I still am stumbling through it.  Each time I change my mind on the book cover it causes problems on my bookshelf on Amazon.  And it causes problems for the sites I have contacted for book reviews and promotions.  Each time I decide to delete more pages, it cause problems that have to be fixed.

I set a lower price for Pre-sales.  But then one of my mistakes kicked me off of Amazon's pre-sales ability.  Arg!  So now I am stepping back and letting things settle before I dig in again.   I have written Amazon and asked for forgiveness and can I please get some help.

The thing is, I envisioned me having copies of the book for the book launch so I could sign them for people, but I have not figured out how to get copies of the book without a stripe across the front that says, "NOT FOR RESALE".  More research is needed.

So we may just be giving away book marks at the book launch and then doing book signings at the local library.  Living and learning for sure through this!

A friend in the neighborhood had just launched her book, Our Journey by Kathie Heimsoth.  She is encouraging me and telling me to relax, it will turn out OK.  She didn't do any pre-sale promotions.

I have already been invited to speak at an Alzheimer's support group.  I was pleased to see someone I sent a review copy to send on a quote from the book to their support group leader.  So I will be speaking briefly at the  Alzheimer's Support Group on Feb. 15.  The group meets at 10:30.  I don't want to take up much of their time, I know how important it is for those who are in crisis to share and get support.

In the meantime I have had to give up some of my party-time with friends.  Not all of it, though.  Lots of fun times.  Last week I went with Debra and Frankie to listen to Jo Jo Moyes at the local pub.  And yesterday I went with a fellow Dementia Diva widow to hear a Beatles Tribute band.  We danced, we laughed, we sang along!

Today, a cold-rainy day, I have a couple that our staying with me getting shelter on their bike trip from the Keys to New Orleans and beyond.  They found me through warmshowers.com

Hopefully I will post again soon with some good news about the progress of the launch.  For now I am stuck in limbo.


Thursday, October 19, 2017

Caregiver: Entertainment Engineer, Snot Cop

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

This week the Divas and Princes asked me about the specifics.  They want to be ready when their time to deal with incontinence arrives.  It will come. I was going to include instructions and tips here in this post.  But I have decided to create a separate post entitled Dementia Doodoo Diva.  What do you think?

Instead I will talk about keeping George active and trying to satisfy his "go and do" urge.  This "go and do" need is something that is not uncommon among persons with dementia.

In our support group there are persons with dementia that want to go and do and there are persons with dementia that don't want to go anywhere or do anything.  I am lucky that George wants to go and do.   Though sometimes it drives me nuts that he sometimes just can't sit and do nothing, I would much rather he want to go so that I can go.

Since we returned from our Hurricane IRMA escape trip we have biked and walked and visited folks and gone to meetings and parks.

We continue to ride bike.  George seems to still enjoy it.  He gets the bikes out and is anxious to go.  Folks that know George from his days at the Floral City bike shop or on the trail chatting with folks will yell out, "Hi George!" as they pass.  He waves at everyone.

When we ride, he keeps up sometimes, and sometimes he lags behind and I have to turn around or stop to wait for him.  Many Tuesdays and Thursdays for 1/2 the ride, our friend Zip rides with George so I can enjoy the ride without having to watch my rear-view mirror.

Most of the time George doesn't shift gears on the trike in preparing to stop or climb a hill.   I asked at the bike shop about an automatic shifter....  They can't put one on his current trike.  So I would have to buy a new one.  $7,000 for the trike and shift package!   Oh my!  I guess I will just keep trying to help him shift at the intersections.  Or maybe I will send him to adult day care once in a while so I can ride longer and faster.  It will take a lot of day care to use up $7,000!

The worry is that crossing intersections he can be very very sloooow.  I and others are telling him, "Pedal George, Pedal!"  But he is usually in the wrong gear and pedals verrrry slooooow.  I tell myself that if he gets hit, it's a better way to go than this slow fade he is living through.  But of course it would be tragic and it might not kill him, just hurt him.  That isn't good.

So if anyone one out there knows of a cheaper solution to the shifting problem, let me know.  I though about a tandem trike.  Those are way expensive also.

****************

Though we came out without damage to our home from Hurricane Irma, our next door neighbors had a tree land on their roof causing the tiles to break.

I was supposed to be watching over their house and I somehow felt like a bit of a failure.  Before they arrived home, George and I scooped up the debris.


RESPITE

On Tuesday and Thursday afternoons I have a woman coming in to provide respite care.   Her name is Jean. Jean is pleasant and positive and we like her.

Jean isn't as fit as George and so when she takes him for a walk she thinks going around the block is a long way.

Next time she comes I am going to give her better instructions on how to deal with George's toilet.  The last two times I got home from my time away and George had pooh in his disposable diaper/pants.

She asks him if he wants help and he refuses.  I will instruct her in how to do it in a take-charge matter-of-fact way.  "Let's go into the bathroom and clean you up."  

What do I do with my respite time?  I often feel I need to get as much into and out of these hours as I can.  So I feel a little pressure to use that time wisely.

The fall has been VERY hot.  During respite time I have to find indoor places to hang out away from the heat.

Often times I have taken my computer over to the neighborhood clubhouse.  I spent $400 on the course to get re-certified as a fitness instructor, personal trainer, senior fitness specialist.  But so far I haven't gotten through much of the training materials.  Sometimes I do that during respite or while George is watching movies.  It isn't so much time chunks as it is priorities and energy and drive.




Some of my fellow Dementia Divas stay home while their relief help is in the house.  I do my banking online at home but then I want to get away so I don't hear it.  I am always listening for his movements and his needs.  I want to be able to shut down that part of my brain for a little while.

Activities for me during Respite include:
Socializing with friends
Time in the Gym lifting weights
Walking (though in the heat that wasn't an option)
Blogging
Catching up on calls and emails and paperwork
Getting my hair cut or nails done
shopping

Activities for George:
Movies
Going places (with me)
Eating
24 piece puzzles
coloring
sorting different colored poker chips, cards, things
sorting coins
build wooden block towers
walking (with me or Jean)
Yoga (with me)
Exercises (with me)
Visiting others who are home-bound (with me)
Sometimes Glen comes and takes George to the bike shop or the hardware store with him

We just went to a social gathering and there was food out.  I handed George the pistachios and he was content to shell them and eat them.  I didn't think about that.  Maybe I can buy a big bag and have him shell nuts.  It is also an activity for him while everyone else is chatting.  He wasn't grabbing so much to eat when he had the nuts to shell.  Cool!

The other day when I picked him up from day care he was working with one of those kindergarten toys.  Oversized screws and nuts of different sizes and colors.  Putting the nuts onto the bolts.

Jodie tried to interest him in one of those boards with different latches and locks.  It didn't seem to keep his interest long.  But maybe we can watch the thrift shop for toy tools that work.

Someone suggested stringing Cheerios for the birds.  I got the Cheerios, then we ate them. I never got the string and big needle.

He used to play games on his ipad.  But now, even easy ones have things that pop up that get him off in other places on the internet.

This week he turned 70.  He got a lot of wonderful greetings on Facebook.  Since he never looks on Facebook, it was time for me to end his account.  They only offer the option to delete it if he is dead.  So I said he was dead.


A BIT BONKERS

I think I am going a bit crazy.  I mean I would never have spent money before on getting my nails done.  The nails is another sign I am going a bit toward the nutty side of the sliding scale.  But my nails were breaking easy and with all the rag squeezing and butt cleaning I didn't want to deal with breaking nails and such.

Which reminds me.  I removed my wedding ring the other day.  While squeezing a rag I gouge a knuckle yet again.  Enough, I don't want open wounds on my hands with the stuff I get into.

Another sign I am not acting logically... today I signed us up for a fundraising walk for an organization that helps caregivers by giving them small grants to pay for respite care.  The fundraising walk cost us $50, almost the cost of a full day of day care.

And the other day I sat eating cookies while reading instructions from my doctor on how to lose weight.

I don't mind being a bit off center.  It gives me permission to do stuff differently... maybe with a bit more pizazz.

I was commiserating with a fellow Dementia Diva about worrying about the money lasting until we women die.  Then I told her my sister said, "Don't worry, it is only money." and "It will all work out just fine."

I said, "well, maybe I will get dementia and it won't matter." 

She responded: "You are my sunshine - such a kick! 

So the light at the end of the tunnel - could be the darn train!!"

It is great to have these fellow caretakers sharing their journeys with us.

And the folks with dementia too, sharing their experiences.  Herb Terry had an article on the front page of the Citrus Chronicle (local newspaper) about his experience with dementia.  It really hit me how very aware he is of what is happening to him.




George isn't very verbal, so the only clue we have that he is aware is his teary laugh and his self-introduction, "I have dementia."


MORE HAPPENINGS

It only took a couple weeks after our return before the piles of brush from the downed trees and limbs were removed from the sides of the road.

Our biking friend, Zip, continues to volunteer to ride with George on our bike rides so that I can zip ahead if I feel like that.


We walked around Cooter Pond by downtown Inverness to see if the water level was up after Hurricane IRMA.  I was amazed at the amount of vegetation that had grown since we had last walked there.

I drive us closer to the pond.  We used to walk the three miles round trip from home, but now that is too far for George with out lots of long bench sits... which drive him nuts..."ready to go?" he says over and over.
Our friend, Regis, had given George a coloring book of hot cars.  George seems to enjoy coloring them which keeps him occupied while I cook or make calls.  He says, "See?"  and then "See?"  and then "See?"  and each time I try to come up with an original comment in return.

"Wow, look at that!", I say.  "What kind of car is that?"  I ask.  "Is that my car?"


After returning from our IRMA escape trip, we looked forward to breakfasts with our bike group.  They greeted us warmly.  We are so blessed with their on-going acceptance and inclusion.  One of the hazards for caregivers and those with dementia is social isolation.  Not for us!  Thanks to George's smiles and quiet, cooperative demeanor and their love.  Thank you!


After breakfast one Saturday we biked south on the trail with Debra and Glen.  We saw hundreds of tiny frogs jumping on the trail.  Debra and I winced as we rode through...  we didn't want to squish them.


We stopped at Townsend park to see how high the water had risen.  It was interesting, Hurricane IRMA came through weeks ago and yet the river just peaked a few days before in this area and will peak a few days after this picture further down stream.  Some people in neighborhoods along the river are still wading and boating to reach their homes.


I was glad to see that our favorite tree in Townsend Park was still standing, and there is an old oak nearby that survived the storm also.

On our way back to town, George and I turned off onto the ramp that would take us up to 44 and the sidewalk to Winn Dixie.  The ramp had not been cleared yet.   I stopped and tried to pull things off the trail, but all I did was gain an appreciation for the volunteers and staff that did all the work to clear branches entangled with vines all along the trail and roads in Citrus County.

On Sunday the drum circle was going on at Fort Island Beach (on the Gulf near Crystal River).   I picked up our friend, Jerry, that loves these things and we went to do a little drumming and dancing on the beach.

Some people are dressed in costumes and belly dancing outfits.

I was surprised when we arrived to see one of the Dementia Divas and her prince enjoying the music.





George likes to watch movies on the big screen.  I don't have headphones that work with our big dumb TV.  The noise makes it hard for me to concentrate on tasks I want to attend to.  So sometimes I bring George into the den with me and use the headphones with his ipad.  Nice and quiet.  At least until his movie ends... or messes up... or loses his attention.
One of the people renting a bedroom from us got sick and had to return to her Parents home.  The day she moved her things out she left me a beautiful bouquet of flowers and a thank you card.  Thank you Lydia!
 


I decided to leave that bedroom open for a few months because I want it available for family and friends that are coming to visit this fall and winter.  George's daughter is coming to visit for a couple weeks so she can assist me in caring for George.  I am looking forward to having some time to sort through some stuff and clean and organize the garage and attic and closets.

Debra and Glen drove us to the Villages for dinner and dancing on the square.  The music was by The Clint Barrio Band.  They were awesome. After we got home Debra investigated and found out they were playing again in the Villages on November 25th.  We made plans to go see them again.

George's daughter, Jodie, will be visiting then and we will take her along.  She can help watch George and dance with him too.

While we were at The Villages and I was up dancing without George, I had to keep one eye on George.  He got up a couple times and started walking away, attracted by the vendor booths around the square.  I took him for a stroll then around to see the vendors.  I thought it would satisfy him.  One of the vendors was selling belts and it just so happened that George had just outgrown his belt.  So I got him a new one that should grow and shrink with him.  He has grown from a 28 waist to a 34 waist.  As he grows I put his old shorts in a pile in his closet.  He will someday not eat so well. and his waistline will shrink again.




SNOT COP

I have become the snot cop.  Watching for the dribble and the dangle so I can remind him to blow his nose or catch it with something myself.  This is another milestone that I have to wrap my mind and heart around.  My old man with a snot dangle, oh my.  Poor George, losing more and more of himself.

He usually dribbles in the morning at breakfast.  I am thinking I will get tissues and keep them close to the dining table.

He used to have a very distinct sound when he blew his nose.  If I lost him in a store or a crowd it wasn't for long.  He would blow his nose and I knew which way to go find him.  Now his blow is quiet.

I have a theory on the nose drip.  The runny nose is because he has this forest in his nostrils that collect the moisture from his lungs until it can't hold anymore and it drips out.   He has slept all night without blowing his nose, so he drips in the morning.

Sometimes during the day I have to remind him to blow his nose.  If he is real foggy I hold the hanky to his nose and tell him to blow... no horn blow now.  

POOP POLICE

Oh my!  My sense of smell is playing tricks on me.  I can't trust my nose anymore.  I smell pooh so I check and there is nothing.  I don't smell pooh and do a periodic check anyway and there is pooh.

Even so, I guess among the Dementia Divas and Princes, I am looked to for information.  Probably because of this blog I am now looked at as the one with experience and expertise on how to deal with incontenence.  I am still learning.  My method works on George, it might not work on anyone else.  Each person with dementia travels a different journey with different behaviors, abilities, and emotions.  Each caregiver comes to the task with different talents, abilities, and issues of their own.

The trajectory for Alzheimer's puts bowel incontinence closer to the end stage.  George isn't near the end stage yet.

George's brain damage has occurred so that he doesn't sense he has a back body anymore.  It is evident when he showers and only the front of his body that he can see gets washed and dried if I don't assist him.

Rarely does he go to the toilet to pooh, though it does happen on rare occasion.  He goes pee in the toilet about 1/3 of the time.

I have wondered if he has no sense of his anus and backside, then he could poop while I am cleaning him.  Well, since that thought occurred, it has happened.  I am wiping and wiping and not getting to the end.  It is like a magician pulling all this stuff out of a hat.  I keep scooping.  "Hold still, I am not done yet."  .... "Not yet, there is more to clean."

This week I finished cleaning his bottom and put him in the shower while I got undressed to join him.  I step into the shower and see him standing with his hand full of pooh and more on the floor of the shower.  He is totally unaware of what is happening, he was just trying to rinse the stuff off his hands.

"Whoops!  Stay, don't move." I said, and stepped back out of the shower and got some wipes and the waste basket to clean up.  As I clean him I try to comfort him, "This is just the journey we are on."  If he is aware at that moment, he needs comforting.  If he is aware he won't be aware for long.  That thought comforts me.

I now have him face his sink while I clean his bottom.  I keep having to remind him not to move.  "Not yet, I am not done yet."  The other day while I was cleaning his bottom he picked up his toothbrush and tooth paste and brushed his teeth.  Ha ha.

I have a couple objects I toss into his sink and tell him to play with them.  But they don't keep his interest.  Maybe I should get some of those oversized plastic bolts and nuts...

So, anyway.  I am going to do a separate post dedicated to toileting.  I hope it either helps other caregivers or at least provides someone a laugh or a giggle or a smile.

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If you enjoyed this post, please click the join button so you can be notified when Susan posts again.  This blog post is part of the book Alzheimer's Trippin' with George - The Journey Continues.  The second book in the Trippin' Series by Susan Straley.


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