Getting My Mother to the Doctor

6 Mar
My mother as I never knew her, as a confident working woman.

My mother was once a confident working woman.

My mother used to live for doctors’ appointments. And visits with specialists were always a high point for her. She never forgot an upcoming doctor’s appointment, until now.

Mom’s memory is failing and she had forgotten about her appointment with a nephrologist at a major hospital.  This is the reason for the dozen calls I took while with my son at the paedeatrician’s office. It’s important that she be there because her kidneys have been getting weaker. To complicate matters, she also misplaced the requisition form for the absolutely necessary blood tests that should have been completed two weeks prior.  To ensure she keeps the appointment made three months earlier, I arranged for new forms to be faxed to the nursing station at the home so she could have blood drawn at a nearby lab.

Mom has Alzheimer’s and is no longer able to get around by herself so I had to arrange for an aide at the retirement home to accompany her. Sounds easy enough, but my mother is in independent living at a private retirement home and the facility has all sorts of rules and regulations(as mentioned in a previous post, she has been on the waiting list for a provincially funded long term care bed since August, 2011). Eventually we got them sorted out and my mother had her blood drawn in time for her appointment.

My mother did get to the appointment on Friday, but even that was nothing short of a military operation. My brother drove her there from her home (they both live in Thornhill while I live in Toronto), and because she has trouble walking (Parkinson’s) he let her off at the door and I met her while he parked his vehicle.  I then exchanged mom’s walker for a wheel chair before wheeling her to the kidney clinic at the other side of the hospital. There was absolutely no way she would have made it there on her own two feet, even with a walker. After meeting with a pharmacist, a dietician, and the nephrologist — where I answered most of the questions as she couldn’t remember — it was finally time for my brother to get our aging and ailing mother back to Thornhill and for me to go pick up my son from school.

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