Wednesday, September 28, 2011

starting to talk

John was in a car accident last week, no one was hurt thank goodness.  But I've started trying to talk to him about how maybe he should think about not driving.  The idea's not going over very well.  I might have to talk to his psychiatrist about it.  I also need to talk to his son and see how his driving was on the trip they took was.  Has anyone had any experience in this sort of matter, have any tips for me?

Monday, September 5, 2011

here's the correct link, sorry about the mix up

if anyone can tell me how to put it in my side bar I'd appreciate it.


<a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="Jenny Matlock" src="" /></a>

here's the link

Matlock" src="" /></a>

I'm back

sorry it's taken me so long to reply to you ladies.  I went to Florida to visit two of my kids, their spouses, and my grandson.  I'm trying to figure out where I found the link to the centus.  I'm assuming it has to do with the blog hop???  wish me luck!

Friday, August 12, 2011

September Reader's Digest

there is a good article in it about caregivers. granted it is from an adult child's perspective, but it gives some good resources.  It sort of applies to me since my husband is 19 years older than I am.  If you have a chance, check it out.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

stroke signs and other info

Even though I have some medical background there's a lot I don't know about stroke symptoms and temporary loss of function that may occur before a stroke or Transient ischemic attack (TIA, aka mini-stroke).  So I have done some research and wanted to share what I have found with you.  I won't lie to you and say it's easy to remember all of this info while your loved one is in the middle of having these symptoms, that's why I'm keeping copies in my purse and on my fridge at home.  I'm going to have to over-rule my husband's wishes/decision about if 911 should be called next time.  I'll also warn you that your loved one may not tell you about all of their symptoms such as severe headache when it happens because they don't want to go to the hospital or worry you.  That's something we are working on.

Temporary Loss of Function
  • numbness, loss of all feeling, or inability to move part or all of one side of the body
  • confusion or altered behavior, such as the inability to fully rouse a person from sleep, or unusually aggressive or combative behavior
  • sudden dimness, blurring, loss of vision in one or both eyes, or double vision
  • inability to speak, difficulty speaking, or difficulty understanding speech
  • inability to or difficulty walking or standing
  • headache, which is severe and in a specific area, without another apparent cause
  • dizziness or loss of balance with nausea or vomiting
  • fainting or loss of consciousness
Stroke Symptoms
  • sudden numbness, tingling, weakness, or paralysis in your face, arm, or leg, especially on only one side of your body
  • sudden vision changes
  • sudden trouble speaking
  • sudden confusion or trouble understanding simple statements
  • sudden problems with walking or balance
  • a sudden, severe headache that is differenct from past headaches
Hemorrhagic Stroke
symptoms are the same as those listed above, but you may have other symptoms
  • severe headache, sometimes in a pecific area
  • nausea and vomiting
  • neck stiffness
  • dizziness, seizures, or changes in mental state, such as irritability, confusion, and possibly unconsciousness
"If you think someone may be having a stroke, use the simple acronym F.A.S.T.: Face: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
Arms: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward? Speech: Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence. Are the words slurred? Can he or she repeat the sentence correctly?  Time: If the person shows any of these symptoms, time is important. Call 9-1-1. Note the time you experienced your first symptom. This information is important to your health care provider and can affect treatment decisions."

Read the rest of the article at:

Sunday, July 24, 2011


My husband is home from the hospital.  all they could basically find were micro-vascular changes in his brain.  so he had another TIA (aka mini-stroke), this time the symptoms lasted 2 days.  his kidney disease is back to stage 3 which is good.  the dr listened to me and got him off the prostate medication that affects his blood pressure, and put him onto another one that doesn't affect his bp.

more later.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Anniversary and back in the hospital

We went to Leavenworth, WA right after I got off work on the 19th and checked into our hotel.  the next morning I woke up at 6 and found my husband on the floor.  It took about 2 hours to get him up, succeded once and then he fell again in the bathroom.  Was able to get him dressed and had to call down to the front desk to get some help to get him up.  I was able to rent a wheel chair for $1 from the local pharmacy.  He refused to get checked out by the paramedics or to go to the local  hospital.  Since he wasn't showing signs of stroke we decided to try to enjoy our anniversary and visit the various shops in the town.  I got quite the workout pushing the wheelchair.  Most of the little ledges in the doors we just ignore are a challenge for those in wheelchairs.  Uneven walkways, holes in paths are all challenges.  Getting around in stores was quite interesting, in most of the stores we could only get partway thru the store.  Then I would have to bring items to my husband to look at.  Quite the eye opener.
We left around 3:30, we stopped once we reached I90 for a quick break. He offered to drive....yeah right, don't think so dear.  John decided he was going to get out of the car and he fell again (this was fall number 5), his legs just wouldn't hold him up.  it was all I could do to get him back into the car.  there was no one around to help me. I made sure he took all of his ritalin doses, no effect, it was like he had forgotten to take them.  After that I hauled tail  as fast as I could to get him back to Puyallup.  He called the consulting nurse, refused to have an ambulance come get him as they would have taken him to Good Samaritin Hospital (out of network, bad experiences there).  so the consulting nurse told him to go to Saint Joseph's Medical Center in Tacoma (we've been here before, EXCELENT care). EXG, chest X-RAY, head CT all normal.  problems with his kidney function again, no one has told me what level of renal disease it is at yet.  waiting for renal ultrasound results.  waiting for the DR so I can request an MRI be done of his spine.  Something is going on with him.  I just want to know what. Please include him in your prayers

Sunday, July 10, 2011

vitamins, ect

I'm working today, I hate working on Sundays.  Only 30 min until I get to go home.

Have you ever left a question/comment on someone's blog hoping for an answer only to go back later to find out that it has been deleted?  Just because the subject matter happed to be many posts back.  bummer.  so I'll ask the question here and maybe I'll get some answers (crossing my fingers).  Do any of you take vitamins/minerals for memory issues and you can tell a difference if you forget to take them?

our anniversary is coming up, I took 2 days off from work for it.  Problem is that my hubby refuses to miss going to the Temple the day after our anniversay (that's one of the days I took off).  hard to believe that we've been married almost 16 years.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

got the Prius back!

I'm so happy that I have my Prius back, I really appreciate it so much more now.  The place (South Hill Collision) that fixed it also detailed the inside of the car which really needed it.  Plus they finished 1 week early.

Monday, June 13, 2011

my car accident

You know how "they" say most accidents happen so many miles from home?  This time it is was true,  mine was exactly 2 miles from my house.  I was stopped and a Marine recruiter driving a government car looked down for just a second and hit my car from behind.  That caused me to hit the truck in front of me.  My poor prius is going to be in the shop for a few weeks.  The estimate is $6100.  Thankgoodness I have PIP coverage so I didn't have to wait around for the government insurance to decide to fix my car.  I'm still a little sore and will be going to the chiropractor for a while to get my neck and back in allignment.  The first rental car we got was an SUV, it was a choice between that and a van, the suv got better gas milage.  Talk about sticker shock at the gas pump!  I'm used to $25 for my prius.  Finally the rental people got a smaller car that gets 35 mpg for us.    
Oh, the day after the accident I realized that I hadn't gotten the license plate number of the car that hit me so I drove to the recruiting office.  I found the car, wrote down the number, then got out my camera and started taking pictures in case my insurance needs them.  Next thing I know there are a couple of Marines asking me what I'm doing, telling me that I am making them nervous.  Then they look at my wrecked car and figured out that "I'm the lady who was in the accident" and settled down.  lol ... gotta smile

Saturday, June 11, 2011

test results

the Dr was kind enough to include me in the appointment by phone ( I was recently in a car accident and had an appointment I had to get to shortly after my husband's appointment).  Over-all the test was went pretty good.  He had some difficulties with parts of it.  The results showed he has difficulty recalling new things (hence the need for writting in the notebook), and delayed reactions.   He no longer has Mild Cognitive disorder, it's Significant/Major Cognitive Disororder.  For some reason it's not hitting me as hard as I thought it would.  Maybe it will later.  Maybe it's just the relief of knowing that I'm not the one who's going crazy/imagining the changes, getting validation that the changes are real.  The Dr said for my husband to look at himself managing the disorder not the disorder managing him.  ie taking his medications, using his notebook, not obsessing on the disorder and what it has taken away.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


I was able to bring my husband home from the hospital yesterday.  The "it takes 90 min to check out" turned into 4.5 hours.  John's blood pressure is back to normal, his kidney function is back to normal.  The hospital Dr took him off all blood pressure meds, lowered the dose of the prostate med (which we found out was really a blood pressure med), and he can't take anti-inflamatories like ibuprofen any more.  Tomorrow we go see his primary care Dr for a hospital follow up.

Saturday, April 23, 2011


Well I took John to Group Health's Urgent Care clinic because he was having really bad back spasms this afternoon.  The nurse took his blood pressure twice and immediately we were taken back because it was something like 84/37.  definately not good.  he also had been light headed (feeling like he was about to pass out but of course he didn't tell me) for the past three days.  some labs were done, ekg was done.   ekg and cardiac labs were fine.  his kidney function had dropped considerably.  when that happens the medication you take isn't filtered out of your body and gets built up in your system causing kidney damage.  so after being on IV's for 2 hours and his blood pressure not going up by very much he was admitted to the hospital.  He's going to be here for a few days, getting IVs, being taking off some medications, and having the dosages lowered on other medications.  Our Home Teacher should be here in a few minutes to give him a blessing. 
More later.

Monday, April 18, 2011


We had a pretty quiet weekend.  Didn't make it to the Temple on Sat due to John not feeling well and my shoulder hurting.  On Sunday it was my first day teaching my new CTR 7 class, they were a dream! There's a little girl who has downs syndrome who is in my class, she was in my nursery class when I was nursery leader.  She has a helper, and she was participating in the lesson like all the other children.
I'm going to give this coupon thing a try again, it's been 18 years since I really used them.  I need to start preparing for when John turns 65 and goes on straight Medicare and our income drops again. ugh!!   I bought 2 extra Sunday papers and there were a lot of coupons.  I've been reading several coupon blogs to get some idea of  how to save more money.  You'll see the links on my home page.   Hopefully they'll help you too.  I'm also looking at it as a way to help build up our food storage again.  Our food storage took a hit when I was out of work for those 10 months.

Monday, April 11, 2011


Our trip to visit our new grandson in Florida went pretty good.  My husband only had one "bad day".  My/our kids want us to move to Florida so they can help us as my husband gets worse.  We're seriously thinking about it.  It would be so nice to have family support.  Plus I'd get to see my grandson grow up!

My husband has his neuro-psych testing this month, it'll take two days.  Then in June he and I have an appointment with the Dr to go over the results.  I'm kinda dreading hearing what I already know in my heart as it will make it real.  But as my husband says he "will be made whole in the resurection".  You can tell the changes in him by looking at the pictures from a few years ago and the ones now.  I try to hold onto the husband that I still have and have to be carefull about how I remind him about his medication so I don't come across as treating him like a child.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

one of those days

Lately things have been pretty routine, not much to post about.  The last Dr appointment went well.  The Dr actually had the crazy idea for me to put my work schedule (which changes since I'm a float) in my blackberry and then get it transferred into my husband's blackberry each month since it's important for him to know my work schedule.  I agreed that it's important that he knows my work schedule and my telling him what it is continually is not working.  Well the blackberry idea won't work either as I have been unsuccessful in getting the software to load up on my laptop, have no idea how to get the two phones to sync up, and am NOT going to load my work schedule and all the changes in two phones.  So my solution is to e-mail my work schedule and all the changes to my husband, luckily he agrees with this idea.
Today I had the day off of work.  We drove up the Dereset Industeries store to see if they had any suitcases and found 3 for a total of $17!    I also got to listen to the same conversation 4 times today about how he had watched an infomertial for a piece of exercise equipment called a kettle.  which he bought.  which is supposed to do" the equivalent of 1 hour 30 min of exercises in the gym and work all your muscles in only 20 min for only $50.   It really works honey, and I want you to take a before and after picture of me".  uh huh uh huh sure thing dear.  If he repeats that same conversation one more time I will be SO tempted to tell him how many times we have already had it. 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

new grandson!

My grandson was born last night.  He weighs 7 lbs 1 oz and is 20 inches long.  This is my son's first child.  I can hardly wait until March when we get to go to Florida to see him.  He is actually my third grandson,  I have a 4 year old grandson from my step-daughter.  My oldest daughter had a baby when she was 15 years old that she put up for adoption, she still gets updates on him. 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

some pictures

my husband and myself
my family

at my Dad's wedding.  My side of the family if on the right
instead of a best-man my Dad had a Best-Daughter

feeling better

I'm finally starting to feel better, going to go back to work tomorrow.  My husband taught my primary class again for me today. What a sweetheart!

He mentioned the other day that one of his biggest worries is having a major stroke.  That reminded me that I need to bring home one of the POLST forms to fill out along with the rest of the paperwork having to do with what type of care you want to get.  In other words, what type life saving measures do you want?  Pretty blunt I know.  But I don't want to have to be arguing with his kids during a medical crisis.  And odds are that he will end up having a major stroke.  There is NOTHING else the Doctors can do to help prevent one.    So he works in the Temple twice a week 'cause he doesn't know how long he will be able to do it.  I work in the Temple once a week with him.  and life goes on.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

home sick

After being sick for 4 days and going to work for 3 of them I finally decided that I needed to stay home.  Unfortunately there weren't any open Dr appointments today, hopefully tomorrow.  I was able to sleep until 10am when I had to get up for a telephone job interview which went well, it lasted 20 min.  I tried to lay back down but whenever I would cough my pugs would start to whine and bark by my bedroom door.  They can't get in the room as we have a baby gate in the doorway, we had decided we would never get any sleep with 4 pugs in the bed.  So right now I'm sitting in my recliner and have three of the pugs sitting with me.  My husband and I like to say that we each have 3 children and together we have 4 pugs who we call "the boys".  All of "the boys" are now sleeping and snoring and i'm the one who's awake. 
John is at the Seattle Temple today.
It's exciting to see people discover this blog and to see responses to my posts are a bonus! 

Monday, February 7, 2011

my husband's background

I just realized that I haven't posted my husband's background.  He has type 2 diabetes and hypertension.  Unfortunately he didn't take his diabetes seriously and is now  on pills and insulin shots.  By not taking his diabetes seriously it has led to at least 7 mini strokes (TIAs), and the vascular dementia.  His main problem is in the executive functioning part of his brain, short term memory is shot.  He is only 63 and we have been dealing with this for 5 years.  If you have diabetes please take care of it, we have learned the hard way that diabetes can affect your brain.

Friday, February 4, 2011

I just copied my old blog to this one so I would be able to have it under this new title. 
My husband and I are both Temple workers.  My husband's memory is better when he is in the temple.  I am hoping that he will be able to continue working in the temple for several years.
My husband has been doing pretty good the past few weeks.  I can tell that he's getting worried about the testing that will be done in April and the results it will show.  He "knows" that he's been getting worse he just doesn't really understand how much and the effect it has on him and others.  On Sat he had problems remembering something and his cognitive thinking went haywire which sent him into a panic attack.  He was worried that he might have had another mini stroke.  So I went over the signs with him a few times and was able to calm him down, but it took a day for it to register in his brain.  I wish he would use the notebook more, hopefully our visit to  his Dr next month will be productive.
Well, time to go back to work.
I decided to see if anyone has read any of my posts in either of my blogs and was blown away that someone has actually read this blog!  I don't know how you managed to run across it as I don't have a link to it on my facebook page.  But thank you for stopping by! 

We are going to be flying to Florida to see our new little grandson soon.  The anxiety of just the thought of being around my ex-husband is already getting to my husband.  I'm torn between leaving my husband here and taking him with me as I need him there with me for support.  Thankfully we have some good friends down there that we will also be able to see.  How much do I tell our friends about how he has changed?  I don't want him being treated as being different.  But he has changed since they saw him last.....
Today I asked my husband to start a load of laundry.  He put the clothes in the washer, soap in the dispenser, then forgot that he needed to press the start button.  oops! 
When I went to my chiropractor he mentioned that when he had seen my husband a month ago he had noticed a change in him. I let him know that my husband is now using a notebook as his short term memory.  This got me to thinking, how do I reply when people ask how he is doing?  Most people don't know how to respond when I say anything other than he's doing good.  He's scheduled to go through the neuro-psych testing in April. 


My husband's Dr says that I am expecting more of him than he can do and she wants to meet with the two of us.  My husband now has to carry around a notebook to write down things in.  The notebook is basically his memory now.  The Dr  also wants to put him through the neuro-psych testing to see what changes there have been since 2006.  It is too much cognitively for him to look at a simple recipe, figure out what we have at home and what he needs to buy, find the items at the grocery store, then follow the recipe once he gets home.  My husband has just recently admitted all this to me, before when I got home from work thinking we were going to be eating a recipe we had discussed earlier he would just say that he had changed his mind and fixed something different.  I wonder what the testing will show.....  I wonder how much longer before I will have to be in charge of his medication.... I hate losing my husband bit by bit to this disease....  My husband keeps reminding me that he will be made whole in the resurrection.

Prayers have been answered

I was just offered a job at Group Health this afternoon!!! I have been wanting to work for this company for 9 years.  My faith has definitely grown during this period of unemployment as I have had to rely more on my Heavenly Father.  I will be working in the Olympia location.  When I lost my job I never thought it would take 10 months to get a new job.  I'm so happy that I don't have to do any more job searching!
Received an e-mail from the lady who was supposed to let me know about the job last Friday to let me know that I'm a strong candidate and to thank me for my patience. She hopes to make a decision soon.  At least I'm still in the running!..Today's interview went well, unfortunately I mentioned why I left my last job.  Hopefully that won't count against me.  She is supposed to call me tomorrow afternoon to let me know if I get the job.   I have another interview tomorrow morning. 

My youngest daughter and one of her friends are looking at apartments.  She doesn't seem to understand that she doesn't make enough money, hopefully she will be able to get enough in student loans to cover her books/tuition and housing.
Today my husband and I were going over what we have planned for this coming week.  I mentioned my interviews and he asked me if I had told him about them before.  This was the third time in less than a week that we've had the same conversation about my job interviews.  He realizes that his memory is getting worse, it makes him grouchy, sarcastic, depressed.... and there's nothing I can do about it.   I'll have to check to make sure he's been taking his medicine.  I don't talk about his conditions (mini strokes and vascular dementia) in the Ward as people have treated him as being different" when we did tell a few people when we first found out his diagnosis.  I even had people tell me he was having seizures (entirely untrue) and that he shouldn't be driving (the Dr has never said for him to give up his license, we have even asked several times).   Luckily we do get support at the Temple and my husband doesn't get treated as if he is "different". 
This isn't how we envisioned spending his 60's and my 40's.