I'm feeling a little frustrated with my newest client, Mrs. Bodwell.
I first saw her on Thursday, and spent well over ninety minutes showing her how to use the concentrator, the cylinders, and the regulator. The next morning, the respiratory therapist showed her everything again, and on Saturday morning I went over and showed her again.
It's very important to me that these clients feel comfortable using everything, but I am picking up a different vibe from this lady! At least half a dozen times during each demonstration, she would start to say how upset she was that she had to use oxygen therapy, that she refused to wear the cannula or carry the little O2 cylinder down to the games room, that she called her Dr (who is very important and flies back and forth from New York) and he said she didn't have to wear it to dinner; I would reiterate that she can only do what she's going to do but it was still very important to learn how to take care of herself and her lung health. If she eventually decided to use oxygen therapy outside her room, she'd want to know how to use the regulator.
Last night I got another call from her.
"Kathy? I'm in big trouble!"
"What's happening, Mrs. Bodwell?"
"I can't get the oxygen to shut off. I wore it to play cards, and now that I'm home it won't shut off. I am just so confused by all this! Can you come by and show me again?"
"Absolutely, Mrs. Bodwell. However, I think you could use some family support with this and would like to show one of your daughters. I may not always be able to come over and it'll be important that they know."
"I'm not sure when they're available..."
"I'm very open to whatever time they're available, as long as I'm available."
"I tried turning it clockwise like you said..."
To be honest, I have a suspicion that she's building up a case against using it, but I have to keep persuing the family training. Once you've done the individual training three times and they're not retaining it you've got to move on because there are hundreds of clients to take care of and it becomes the family's responsibility.
In this case, she's very lucid; she's active, she has friends inside the nursing home, she sews and plays cards and knows exactly what she wants (she had her daughter picking up a flat screened, HD TV while I was there) so I know that it comes down to
A) a mental block (or)
B) manipulating someone - the docs, the family, or me.
I remember how upset my mum was the year the docs told her she'd be on blood pressure medication, possibly for the rest of her life. I wondered if we'd have trouble keeping her compliant! In the end, she knew the meds were going to help her and after a few weeks, it was rarely mentioned again.
I have an appointment with Mrs. Bodwell and her daughter on Monday, and I hope it works the same way.
Speaking of Mum, it's her 82nd birthday today! We're headed out to see her in an hour or so.
Have a nice Sunday!