Thursday, September 26, 2013

Help! I've fallen and I don't want to get up.

There’s something that came up when I was in the hospital a few months ago that sticks in my mind.  There seemed to be a lot of concern that I live alone. It came up numerous times, in numerous ways.  When the physical therapist heard I live alone, she asked who was going to help me negotiate stairs and around the apartment when I got home.  The cat, I told her. 

One of the nurses asked me who I talk to about my problems.  I said, nobody.  She indicated that’s not healthy.  What I was experiencing, in a small way, is the same concern that medical people expressed for my mother living alone after she broke her hip.  Of course, I was there for mom, three times a day (meals) and I did whatever needed doing.

I felt insecure, almost threatened, by the staff’s concern for my living arrangements.  I realize that this will only get worse as I age.  If I live long enough, the concern will be warranted by my deteriorating condition.  A nursing home or rehab hospital would be the next step. 

I really enjoy living alone.  Really really.  After I sobered up and got a place of my own, I realized that I had never lived alone prior to that.  It felt good.  Still does.  I can’t stand the thought of being placed somewhere to be taken care of.  If I am, I want the option to take a cyanide pill when it gets too bleak.

Unfortunately, my plan to live fast and die young failed.  Now it’s live slow and die old.  Given my past and my medical history, however, I don’t expect to live to a ripe old age.  Alkies don’t get away with anything.  It all catches up to us eventually.  My independence is important to me.  If I have to give that up at some point in order to survive, I’d rather be dead.   


Toad said...

Orb's, As much as I like you, and don't even know you, I REALLY respect your wishes. I do however hope you outlast your dim look at the future, but certainly understand. I do however have one problem with your views currently. I think that, you should start a kind of biography of ORB"S so to speak. The life story of a man that has gone through the mill, and found a way to carry on, and do the kind things you must have done for your Mother, etc. As a matter of fact, I think the title of this particular thread of yours Is perfect for the title. My sister Colleen said "Old age ain't for sissies" and she was right. You, my friend though are one of a kind. Your VERY intelligent, Very funny, I know you must be very kind, and your my friend, and I like that. Say hi to your cat.

kkdither said...

Nursing homes are more and more the norm as you age. Since hospital care is so expensive, and insurance companies limit hospital days, many, if not most elderly are referred to nursing homes for rehab. Patients are discharged from hospitals with such high care needs, they often can't be met by family or non-professionals.

I found that out when caring for my mother. Once someone with coverage is placed, the facilities aren't in any hurry to release them since they help the home's bottom line.

Under Medicare, you are allowed so many days of 100% payment to the provider. To the nuring home, this is guaranteed money, not the reduced amount they receive from Medicaid (title 19) which happens quickly to most every patient, once they've depleted all of their life savings.

It is a miserable outcome. Care is bad, food is bad, quality of life is terrible. Healthcare is horrible. One really needs an advocate looking out for their interests when they get to that stage. It is a shame that it all boils down to money, not the person in need.

lizardmom said...

Toad, you are so very right, Orbs is very kind, such a sweetheart and so glad we've all found each other and have become family. We're actually way better than family, we actually LIKE each other :)

I know I'm going to be a very stubborn older person, and I won't be able to help it. I can't say anything when others complain how stubborn their parents are and how they need help and refuse, as I will be the same way, I don't envy my kids when I get to that point. Some things improve with age, my stubbornness just seems to grow, not mellow. It can be a blessing but also a curse. Gotta love me :)

If you need anything, anybody out there, all you need to do is reach out to your family and we're all here to help in any way we can.

OrbsCorbs said...

I'm getting a swollen head from the compliments. Thank you. I like to think that I don't kick dogs or little children, but there are people who are convinced that I am a demon because of my obsession for truth. Take my landlord, for instance. His people screwed up by not informing me of what I needed to do to my apartment to prepare it for a pesticide application. I complained loudly about that. Rather than admit the mistake, they are not renewing my lease. I'm tired of taking it on the nose for doing the "right thing."

I'll probably be reaching out this coming Monday or so. There's a slight chance that I'll be staying, but I very much doubt it. I should find out Monday. If I have to move, I'll need all the help I can get.

OKIE said...

If you have to move I am available to help Nov. 9. I hope for your sake you don't have to.
It's bad enough you have health issues,you don't need to have emotional ones when you realize your beliefs are slipping as well. Always stand your ground Orbs, it's who you are. A trustworthy Irregular.

drewzepmeister said...

We are ALL there you Orbs!

I can relate to solitude, even though I have a love/hate relationship to it. And that I can respect. But its nice to know that someone has your back, especially when you are in a bind.

So, if you ever need anything, just give us a call....

OrbsCorbs said...

Thank you, thank you.

I believe my sense of humor developed as a defense mechanism. Today, I also believe that good jokes or humor, as well as good poetry, literature, music, art, etc., exist outside of the author or artist or performer. An author does not create great work so much as he "channels" it into existence.

Jokes pop into my head at the most inappropriate times. Some are so funny that I spit up food or whatever when they hit me. I don't take credit for those jokes. I just stumbled upon them. When it happens, I say, "Thank you, God."

Tender Heart Bear said...

Daddy Orbs- We are always here to help you out when you need out help. Just give us a call to let us know. If it comes down to you having to move and you need help packing too let me know I am more than willing to come and help you out!

Tender Heart Bear said...

Mary- When you come in we are going to have to get together. That is also my sons birthday that you will be in but he is up in Shawano so I will not be able to see him unless he comes down here for a change!