Monday, November 14, 2011

In all the little days and ways

3:06 p.m. Today's project was to get a haircut for Steve, buy the biggest turkey for the least price per pound, and figure out what to do about his prescriptions, now that we've found ourselves in the dreaded Medicare Part D "doughnut hole." That situation has been hanging over my head for a few weeks now, and I've even been praying about  following the neurosurgeon's advice to just take him off of the most expensive one, Aricept. That's a scary thought--just like shelling out $225 is--but then, life has lots to be scared of, unless we take our problems to the throne of grace! Hebrews 4:16, a treasured verse to me, says, that since Jesus, our sinless High Priest, is now interceding for us to the Father in heaven:

Therefore, let us come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

We started out at Ralphs grocery store, heading back to the frozen turkey section, with me holding Steve's hand for pacing. There was a 21.90 pound turkey for 47 cents a pound, if you bought $25 worth of groceries too. Since our pantry was somewhat bare, that was certainly no problem! Then I had coupons to make the purchases even cheaper. So thank you, Lord! In past years with every one of the kids and significant others, plus my sister and her kids here, nothing less than 26 lbs would do. But this year, we can go down a bit in turkey weight, now that both of the girls are married and need to share the day with their in-laws, perfectly correct. We'll see them all for dessert and games later!

Fresh from that wonderful victory, we returned to the same shopping center after putting away the turkey and other items, to sign in at Fantastic Sam's salon. The wait was short, and we both went over to the chairs. When the stylist asked Steve how he'd like his hair, he just shrugged. So I described the basically same haircut, only short. He definitely had trouble getting in and out of the chair, and was confused about getting his hair washed, but I gently guided him over to the bowls.

The girl asked, "Is this your brother?" I was chuckling inside as I told her he's my husband. We've been described in many ways as a couple over the last 30 years, but never yet been told we look alike! I guess there's a first time for everything.

Haircut finished, we got gas and dropped off some disposable mascara wands at my team member Chelsey's house, then home for yard cleaning and then lunch. Steve was shaky and almost stumbling this morning, like he's been off and on for the last few months, whether on high doses of Aricept, or back on the original dose. Much as we want to think there's a way to use medication for better results, this is a heavily degenerate incurable disease.  All we can do, with the Lord's guidance and wisdom, is attempt to ameliorate the symptoms.  It's so hard to see my husband's hands shake and move in the opposite direction when he needs to grasp something or put on socks, or even eat. He struggled with vacuuming, and some yard clean-up; but was good at holding coupons during my peripatetic trek through the supermarket, and emptied our kitchen compost container, and followed up with stirring the large bin with a hoe, to mix up the contents, with no trouble.

We had some excellent good news from CVS pharmacy this afternoon regarding Steve's Aricept. They put together a generic version, 90 days' supply for $15! You can bet we raced over to pick them up, because Steve had just run out today! He swallowed it on the way home. The Lord is Jehovah Jireh, "The God who provides!"

Yet, this afternoon, we had a strange incident. I started the Oreck  for Steve and he vacuumed  the downstairs with no problem, very thoroughly. But when I came around the corner from the kitchen to the living room, Steve was lying halfway on the tile and on the carpet! There had been no sound of a fall, and with the noisiness of the tile, I would have heard it. He wasn't asleep or unconscious, so he helped himself up using the banister. Apparently, he'd been crouching down to wrap up the cord, leaned a bit too far and toppled over. But like other falls he's had over the last two months, he wasn't dizzy! Between the loss of depth perception in the mid-to-late stage, and overall unsteadiness, it happened.  What a good relief it was to see our caregiver at the door, after I spent time consoling Steve in his tears, praying and listening to praise music on our Directv Channel 826, "The Spirit". We were beginning to be uplifted once again. And Andrew's arrival provided a change of pace and personality that can do any of us good!

He is now frying up Steve's favorite meal, hamburgers!!

A friend from our Home Fellowship is coming over in a few minutes to get our upstairs bathroom functional again. Praise God, as Hebrews 4:16, for His granting us "strength to help in time of need!"


  1. What an eventful day! Glad Steve is okay. My husband can't stand very long, and so doesn't vacuum now.

    I hate that donut hole also, but we changed from AARP to a different medicare plan at the beginning of the year and it has really helped.

    You should be glad Steve was described as your brother. My husband was described as my dad recently in a store! He is almost 74 and I am 67.

    Saturday I will attend a Christian Writer's Conference in Orlando, Florida. Also, I had a *project* last week! I just made my book an e-book on Barnes and Noble. Thinking and praying about just writing an e-book for my experience with my husband's Alzheimer's.

    Have a good week, Dana and Steve! The LORD is so gracious to take us through our struggles.

  2. Thank you, Carol, and may the Lord use your ebook! I'm still in the research phase of my next book, notating journal entries over the years that are indicators of what we are seeing now with Steve's Alzheimer's. It is amazing to see all of the issues with the family and ministry, even my political career, that came back to remembrance!!