Monday, September 12, 2011

Start of new journals..Oriental and sewing themed

Journal sewing theme..signatures signatures for my sewing themed journal

Yesterday and today I started making some journals to save my sanity. Read below...and I promise more photos of my journals are in this message.

If you follow my blog you know that I have been busy dealing with problems that arise with elderly parents.  I love my parents and do all that I can to make things easier for them. My 88 year old mother has advanced Alzheimer's disease and her condition is getting worse. Mom has no short term memory at all and doesn't remember that she has Alzheimer's. Mom had been in a nursing home where she was well taken care of and safe. My 92 year old dad wanted her home and my brother's thought that mom should be home with dad if that made him happy.
So, against my better judgement we took mom out of the nursing home on August 16th. If I thought I was busy before; let me tell you it is nothing compared to what I am dealing with now. My brothers are hardly any help at all. I can really only depend on one of my brothers to help me out when I need help.
Mom could only come home with round the clock care. I spend several days a week taking shifts to care for mom at home to help keep their cost down. Their long term insurance only pays half of what it paid the nursing home daily and round the clock care is very, very expensive.  I take both of my parents to their doctor appointments and to do all their errands.  I bring home cooked meals whenever I go to their home for them to eat.

Dad is in denial and won't admit that there is anything wrong with my mother, because he wants her home even though he can't take care of her. Because mom can still talk about old thinks she is okay.
Both of my parents don't want the 24/7 home health care workers in their home that have to be with them if mom is to stay home and they won't let them do anything. Then they complain that the women are a big waste of money and are lazy. This is a no win situation.
Dad never cooked when mom was well, and now to prove a point he is cooking meals and they are somewhat of a disaster. Dad and Mom won't go to assisted living, because my dad built their house and he states he isn't going anywhere but out of his house in a box when the time comes.  Dad shouldn't be driving as he is extremely hard of hearing among   other things.                                                                                           
When I took dad to the doctors last Thursday the doctor told him he shouldn't be driving anymore for his safety and others on the road. Dad told the doctor that he could drive just fine. That isn't the case, but in his mind that's what he thinks. Dad has blamed me for the doctor questioning his still driving, even though it was my younger brother who called the doctor. So now Dad is going off in the car almost daily just to prove to us he can drive. If we took the battery out or removed wires, or took the keys, dad would probably call a garage to get help or find the problem and fix it. My brothers just need to get the car out of their garage! I can only imagine the sparks that would fly if they do that.

I can't state enough how much I love both of my parents. I do everything for them that I can, but I am the one they blame when my mother does something dangerous and I tell my dad that she really needs to be back in the nursing home. My brothers are finally realizing that mom was safer and better off  when she was in the nursing home.  I get 1-2 calls a day from the home health care workers. I almost hate to answer the phone to hear what the latest problem is.
Anyway, I have decided that the only way to save my sanity is to not argue with my dad.  I am only going to go check up on them a few times a week. I will still do all their shopping and errands and take them to appointments, but to be truthful, I just need a break. I feel so guilty making this decision, but I can't deal with the stubbornness and defiance. My dad had never been like that. I know deep down that my dad doesn't mean this, but it is still hard to deal with. It is so very hard dealing with elderly parents who don't want help and don't think that they need it.

Yesterday I decided since I've been taking care of my parents needs for over 2  1/2 years that I need a little break. I keep telling myself don't feel guilty as I am still doing plenty.
Now, if only I can  listen to myself and all the wonderful advice from friends so that I can stay healthy in body and mind.
I hope I didn't bore you with my ramblings, but I am sure there are many that have elderly parents and are dealing with some of the same issues and frustrations. All I want is for my parents is to be safe. Alzheimer's is such a devasting disease. Thank goodness my husband has been supportive during this stressful time.

Time for art to save my sanity....I started working on the journal below on Sunday. The journal isn't finished yet as it needs to be bound and embellished. But here are the bare bones of my first journal. The pages have cardstock, graph paper and watercolor paper. The pages are 8  1/2  x 11 folded in half.
Never ending journal oriental book cover this photo is more true to the color of the handmade oriental washi paper I used

Never ending journal oriental book cover2 outside open book doesn't show the correct color
of the paper.

Never ending journal oriental book open with unfinished signatures signatures

Below... is the journal I started working on this afternoon. I used sewing themed papers from a Tim Holtz paper stack that I cut down. This little journal is 4  1/2 x 5  1/2 . The signatures are of cardstock and graph paper. I want to add envelopes to put fabric samples in.  I still may add a watercolor paper page to each  cover.
Journal sewing theme..Tim Holtz paper stack Tim Holtz paper 12 x 12 stack
Journal sewing theme..button paper full cover
Journal sewing theme..button paper cover front cover
Journal sewing theme..pattern paper inside cover inside journal cover pattern paper cardstock.
Journal sewing theme..signatures  I am only using 5 signatures for this journal as I want to leave room for buttons, threads, fabrics.

It felt good to just sit and relax and work with paper. I did get 2 phones call today regarding my mom and dad, but I dealt with the issues over the phone. The ladies are getting paid to take care of my parents and I have to step back a bit and let them handle things.

Did you like the start of my journals? I hope that I can finish them up soon. I have a few swap commitments that need working on too.
elaine signature3


Kathy said...

Elaine, I'm so sorry to hear how stressed out you are..Dealing with elderly parents is very difficult, but you are doing all you can, so please don't feel guilty..You need to take care of yourself, too..I'm glad you are taking time out for art, you need some peace and enjoyment..Blessings to you and your parents...Kathy

Kathy said...

Hey Elaine..I forgot to tell you how great your journals are...Beautiful..Hugs..

Joanne Huffman said...

I particularly like the sewing journal.

Have you considered calling the police about your father's driving. I think they can stop him and demand he take his driving test and he doesn't have to know it was you who called.