Thursday, August 20, 2009

Birds in a cage

Whenever I get overwhelmed by the whole ball o' fun, including work, stress from watching H decline, and now having to do everything around the house (except for cleaning and H's meds), I just tell myself, "This sucks, but I can handle it." Seems to work much of the time.

Nonetheless, I find myself fantasizing about life "outside," life without caring for a very sick person…of course, the fantasy is likely better than what the reality might actually turn out to be.

H has had a large parrot, a macaw, for about 7 years now. In the past, H took the bird on picnics, to Petco, to friends, and for long walks around the neighborhood. But recently, H has not been able to do these things and is now having trouble holding the bird as his hands are shaking. Of course, H can't clean up after the parrot or feed him, etc….so I end up doing that.

For awhile now, I've been thinking, but not saying, that we need to plan for a home for the bird when H can no longer care for him. Now, these birds need a lot of attention…they are highly social animals and they adopt families as their "flock," so it is bad for them if they spend too much time alone or in a cage, which is what is happening now. I work much of the time and H sleeps pretty much all day.

I've raised the topic of H and I working together on finding a future home for the parrot (but, likely, I'll have to arrange that myself). I want to make certain that the bird gets a good home, someone who knows how to care for him. But H got really, really angry about it and said that the Dr. just needs to change his meds so he doesn't shake so much, but that is just one part of it.

H fell again the other night and was incoherent for 5 minutes or so afterwards. This is the fourth time in two weeks that he's passed out and fallen. Luckily, I was home each time. Drs. know about this, but say that his blood pressure is so low that they're not certain just what to do. Mostly, "just don't stand up so fast."

This morning, H said that he is afraid to take a walk in the neighborhood or go anywhere because he might fall down and that he doesn't feel well. And that he's afraid to leave the house without me. And so, even tho' H stopped taking his HIV meds this Summer, so he could "have a life," he doesn't.

1 comment:

Y | O | Y said...

This blood pressure issue happened with my Mom, too. Always when she stood up. They recommended compression stockings which she wouldn't wear. They also had her on Midodrine medicine for it. We started having her blood pressure checked when seating and then after standing up so the large the disparity could be documented.

Is he getting enough water? It could be dehydration with this summer heat.