Having Some Fun - Even if it's Only Imaginary!

Cindy

Having Some Fun - Even if it's Only Imaginary!

Cindy
centaur.road trip car.2012-mdIt's late at night and I'm dealing with the second night in a row this week of hallucinations and psychosis. I guess it's fairly common in the elderly, especially with terminal illness, but it's still sort of scary to deal with. Luckily, I have support from hospice and can administer Haldol as needed, but the first few times my dad had this, it really freaked me out.

Now that I'm getting a little more used to it and it is a little less scary, I've had an epiphany. It appears that most of the time when he is having his imaginary journeys in his mind, it's fun stuff that he would like to be doing, or that he did in his younger, healthier days. And without sounding like I'm making fun of him, which I have way too much respect to do, I have to see some humor in some of his journeys. So far, at least in his head, he has gone out of town to the lake, to casinos, and hung out with friends. He has had the whole family over for Christmas and was excited to give out presents, and has packed his clothes (he does this not only in his mind, but for real) for imagined vacations. He told me one time he was about to “load up the car”, and then he realized he doesn't have a car anymore. Tonight he told me he won a huge jackpot at the casino!

It's weird because he always seems to know who I am, even though he usually thinks he is somewhere other than his home of 48 years. When he is in this odd state of mind, he retains his sense of humor and his sense of who he is. He will joke with me in the same manner as he would in a lucid state. He still uses the same words, the same idioms, and most of the time he seems pretty happy. He still says things like, “I have a dilemma” and “Did you like my answer?”, even though what follows is something odd and nonsensical.

I still worry that he may somehow get out of the house, even though we have taken precautions to prevent that. But when I'm up all night listening, checking, talking, reassuring, medicating, I guess I'm sort of glad that he is at least having some fun, even if it is only in his head.

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Denise

Hi Cindy--I love how you worked through the fright about the hallucinations (it is scary) to find the joy in them. I would imagine it must be something to watch your dad have so much fun. It's like he's living his life over--and only the best parts at that. \r\n\r\nAlways good to read an update from you. Please keep us posted.

ejourneys

Awesome about the jackpot! :D Humor is a blessing at times like these; fun doubly so.\r\nI wish your father many more good times, imaginary or not, and wish you peace of mind and safety. There is much to be said for happy hallucinations and delusions.

EllysGdaughter

What a \"trip\"! I like the way you put it, about respectfully enjoying what your dad \"is doing\". I found my grandfather (had no meds) to be such a delight in his last two weeks, so sweet and gentle, a side I had not really experienced before! I wish you the best with getting through your nights and days of adventures! It is so wonderful that he is experiencing the happy times!