I haven't written about dementia since last August. But today is the third anniversary of the day my husband was placed in a nursing home. He had spent the previous 3 days in the hospital. They checked him out to make sure that there was nothing that could be fixed before he was placed. And the decision was that what had changed for him was just the normal progress of the disease.
It was very hard placing Joe. Two weeks earlier I truly could not imagine needing to do it. But one thing I have heard from other caregivers is that almost all placements happen much later than they should. If you are thinking about placement, it is probably a lot later than you should have started thinking about it.
Looking at how things progressed I would not have been able to continue to take care of him. Within a week or two of placement, Joe as looking for corners to urinate in because he could no longer figure out where a bathroom was, or why he needed to go there. The nursing home was prepared to deal with that, but I would not have been able to.
He also began to pace 20 hours at a time. No single person could deal with that either. We all need to sleep.
He was already losing a great deal of weight when he was placed. If he had stayed home he would have died from the weight loss that I was not qualified to deal with. The nursing home got the weight loss stopped and plateaued for over a year before even they could no longer reverse what the disease was doing.
I always knew logically and rationally that placement was what had to happen. I'm beginning to accept it emotionally now as well.