Sunday, May 31, 2020

The continues LOCKDOWN is having a severe, negative impact on everyone!

Today, is the end of week eleven of the lockdown in Assisted and Skilled care here at Azalea Trace.  I have written about the drastic downturn of the mental and cognitive abilities of those of us who live in Assisted Living.   One resident's family has move that person home instead of being confined with no social or mental stimulation.  I am now seeing negative, mental issues being demonstrated in my Wife.  She is much more introverted and reclusive.   Things upset her more.  Keeping us apart, for no constructive reason, is causing major issues for her, in my estimation.

The last few days, I have been able to keep Zeus the Wonder Dog with me during the day.  This relieves some agitation my Wife experiences from his whining and constant demand for attention.  He can be a pain!!

I hope this brief respite helps her.  It is good for me to have Zeus over.  But, it is in no way a substitute for being WITH my wife.

Building on my last post.  I do have a Neurologist appointment for June 11, to see if Effexor, Stress, and Concussions may have been the culprit.   I continue to feel better, each day I am farther away from Effexor.

More later.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

A new direction

I spent 40 years with the United States Navy.   Went from a Seaman Apprentice in Deck Force on the USS Mullinnix (DD 944) to Master Chief Gunner's Mate, a Command Master Chief and retired as the Force Master Chief, Surface Forces, U.S. Atlantic fleet.   What I did as  Gunner's Mate could be described as stressful, dangerous, death defying, and crazy!   Anyone who willingly goes into a gun mount, that is broke, and very likely will blow up, is certifiably crazy! From that career, I went to work for the Navy as a Civil Servant (GS) as a Tech Rep repairing Gun Mounts, Turrets, and anything else.  I promoted into management and was the Branch head for the Programs Branch managing the material condition reviews of the combat systems on the ships in the Atlantic Fleet.  I was transferred to the Search Radar Branch as their Branch Head and worked for the most hard headed, self-centered,  Jack Ass, that I ever knew.  He had vision, but he had the people skills of a cross between an horny, hungry Pit Bull and a rattle snake in heat!  To top it off, the Union Vice President, (yes, government agencies are unionized,) worked for me, sometimes.  So, any tine the command did not like what the Union VP did, they came down on me!!

Why do I tell you all of this?  I spent 40 years in  positions of increasing responsibility, danger, frustration, and STRESS!!   It was during the time I was in my last position that I began to have issues.  Memory issues, not knowing where I was, and agitation issues.  Twice while driving home from work, while I was stopped in traffic, I forgot where I was, where I was going, and where I was coming from!!  My GP, who I still think is the best Doctor I ever knew, sent me to a very respected Neurologist and after 3 months of testing, and after sending me to the  University of Virginia for a second opinion, told me I had Lewy Body Dementia and put me on a number of drugs.

I did not get better, in fact, I got worse.  So, after forgetting how to do the computer inputs to get one of my Techs orders to go overseas, I retired on a disability.  I was not ready to retire, but I could not do my job anymore.

Each Neurologist put me on more drugs and I got worse.  But, my condition did not progress like others with LBD have.  Yes, I had very real hallucinations.  Yes, my memory was bad.  I had walking issues, dizziness, rigid legs and arms.  My hands would involuntarily move!  So, what I was experiencing looked like LBD.  But doctors would tell me, especially Neurologist Psychologists, that they thought I did not have LBD.  That always made me angry.  And recently, my Wife loudly told the Psychologist;  "OK,Then what does he have?"  Of course, he had no answer.

Recently, about three months ago, just before we were locked down for Corvid-19, I stopped taking Effexor XR.  I had been on Effexor in one form or another for at least 10 years!  It never did me any good but the neurologists insisted I take it!  And a so called neurologist here in Pensacola increased my dosage to 240 mg a day!!

It took a long time to get my dosage down from that level.  The draw down was terrible.  The side effects of being addicted to Effexor are really bad.  But, I was down to 30 mg a day and the GP said I could quit Effexor with limited side effects at that time.  But she wanted me to stay on Effexor for my own good.  I said, NO, and stopped!

I still had brain ZAPPING at night and sexual dysfunction issues.  But, over the last two months, things have changed.  I think more clearly.  I walk better.  I am not as stiff, I am not as agitate,  And though I have had no contact with my Wife for tea weeks, I know my ability to have sex has returned.

So, today, we emailed my present neurologist in Pensacola and asked for a referral to another doctor for a second opinion.  I explained all the positive changed that have occurred since I stopped Effexor XR.  She was miffed, to say the least.  But, she is getting me that referral.

What will come of that?  Will the new neurologist agree with me that stress and Effexor was my problem and not LBD?  Or, do I really have a weird case of LBD that does nor progress normally.  If there is a normal progression.  I cannot answer any of those questions.  But I do know I feel so much better, and more like ME than I have in 11 years!!!

Yes, there is the issues of those MRI's and Brain Scans that show holed, White and Black, in my brain.  But, the most recent scans do not show brain shrinkage.  So, what all they means in beyond me.

But, again, I do know, I feel better, function better, and feel more normal that I have in 10years of more!  And if I can have it, I want my LIFE BACK!!!

We will see what we will see!  But, I am taking a new direction!

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Let me offer some ideas to help those in Assisted And Skilled Care

Azalea Trace Activities Director!!!  Wake up!!  We need your help desperately!!!  Quit looking at junk on your computer and get off your butt and help those of us who pay your salary!!!

OK, I got your attention.

First of all, what aren't you providing daily or at least bi-weekly Skype or FaceTime calls between Assisted and Skilled care residents and their family members out of the community and in the community?!?!

What can't those of us who have tested negative, play Bingo, do Coloring, have exercise classes, enjoy other recreational activities?  Play Skipbo?  Get creative Activity Directors!!! Earn your pay!!!

How about taking us for a walk outside to see nature?    The weather is nice here in Pensacola!!

I know this requires you to do something, and I am sorry for that.  NOT!!!  People are mentally dieing because the Activity Director is not doing the job you are paid for.

There is more to keeping us safe than Locking us up!

There is a concept of care that address the "Total Person".   It is designed to care for the individual's Mind, Body, and Soul.   That seems to be totally missing in this "Lock them UP and keep them safe from the Corvid-19 virus" approach.

I have written about this earlier in this pandemic, but my meltdown yesterday further illustrates the lack of concern and concentration on the well being of our Minds and Souls.  I can give you the names of six residents in Oak Bridge Terrace, when're I live, that have visibly deteriorated mentally to the point of being incapacitated.

Yes, they are free of Corvid-19.  But if they can no longer function at the cognitive and mental level they we in before the Lock Down, can you really say they were cared for and are better off?!  I argue that the answer to that question is a resounding NO!

When individuals that could have conversations before the Lock Down now can no longer even talk.  And Individuals that 10 weeks ago were dressing themselves and being social confident now put their clothes on backwards and have one shoe on and a bare foot wandering the hall with a blank stare on their face; I say their minds were completely neglected during the Lock Down!

My melt down and outburst yesterday should alert the staff to a serious indication of my mental and cognitive degradation.  But, it won't, because ACTS and Azalea Trace are basking in their success of keeping Covid-19 out of 10100 Hillview Drive.  Yesterday's Town Hall presentation by the ED convinced me of this fact.  They care more about their corporate reputation, selling more contracts, and staying out of Court, than they do about the residents in Assisted and Skilled Care.  It is just that simple.

Couple that with the fact that in the 27 months I have lived in Assisted Living, the ED has NEVER held a meeting with the residents of our Assisted Living Community.  The ED panders to those living in Independent Living, and gives the vocal, landed gentry what they want in every instance.  But, we are tucked away, hidden, never displayed and forgotten.  Sort of like the Crazy Uncle or the Autistic Daughter.

One more point.  There are residents in Assisted Living whose spouses are in Skilled care.  For 9 weeks, they have not been permitted to see their spouses, even though we were all Locked Down at the same time and in the same manner!!  That does not make sense on any front!!  Especially considering all of the residents of Assisted and Skilled Care recently were tested for Corvid-19 and the results were 100% negative!

Then there are the Dementia patients whose spouses live in Independent Living but cannot visit their spouses, even though they have been locked down for 8 weeks!

No, none of this makes sense or supports the premise of caring for the total person.  Am I frustrated, angry, ready to quit?  YES!!    But, like any other resident of an Assisted or Skilled care facility, I have no recourse.  As I have written before, I am a prisoner, convicted of nothing more than trying to plan for my senior years.

If your ever thought of moving into any retirement community, based on the response to Corvid-19,  I  strongly recommend you reconsider your plans.  This is not what they advertised and not what I signed up for.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

I have a friend that used to say.....

I have a friend, from Cleveland, that is prior a Navy Boats'wain's Mate, that says;  There is not enough Beer to keep me watching a Cleveland Browns Football Game.  Well.... There is not enough Beer to keep me happy in their illegal LOCKDOWN AT Azalea Trace!!!


The Executive Director of Azalea Trace delivered her weakly (spelling is a choice of mine based on her leadership) ED Brief!  (ED fits too)   In her words,; They are implementing Phase one of the process one step at a time and each step has to be verified by the Corovirus Task Force at Corporate!

I will be 80 before I get out of here and before I see my wife again!  It takes less time to recover from a Nuke Attack that this Covid-19 bullshit, that has killed less that 6% of the people that get it!!

I am beyond my self control limit!!!  I am now drinking Coors Banquet Beer with the distinct possibility of shift to Bourbon, or combining them into Boiler Makers!!!

Are we shitting me?!?  I need to be with my Wife!! I did not sign up for this sort to Un-Constitutional confinement based on the opinion of idiots!!!

The stores are open, let me out!!  If I get Corvid-19, lock me in my room and let me die.  But, this confinement is killing me NOW!!!

I can add more profanities, trust me, I know them all and how to couple them into unique verses!! Remember, I am  Master Chief Gunner' Mate!  But, for the moment, I will reserve that for later.


Monday, May 11, 2020

My Wife is BRILLIANT!!

Tonight, we were talking on the telephone, the only way we have conversed in almost 10 weeks!  We were talking about people building immunity to the Corvid-19 virus.  I told her I had read a number of articles that question IF there can be an immunity from the Corvid-19 virus from getting the disease!  She said; They need to look at the Common Cold, because it is something we get time and time again with no imparted immunity!!

She is BRILLIANT!!!  I hope someone in research is looking at this correlation!  Yes, the virus is different, but there may very well be something to learn fro the Common Cold.

They need to look under every rock to solve this issue, NOW!