Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Panic , The Small Stuff



Debit cards. Most everyone has one, their a handy little item. To me, they will be the death of me.
When you have dementia, you lose so many things. I haven't handled finances around here for years.
I don't know who we owe, what we owe, or when we owe it. Most patients are like this. It's not something that anyone is going to do have their loved one who is a dementia patient in charge of finances.
That being said, we do like to have some sort of control in our lives. Least I do. My wife always keeps a few dollars in my checking account.
We have a mutual checking and savings but I have had another for years being in business many times, we just kept it open.
Here in lies the problem. I never use my card. Little at best. Maybe some gas for my truck or the mowers, perhaps a run through a fast food drive through now and then.
That's about it. We don't keep a lot in there. No need to. Usually less than $100 and that's plenty for me in a month.
So today Sam and I make a trip to our local walmart. There were a few items I have been wanting to get for the upcoming camping season.
In total it came to about $55. I am in the checkout, and low and behold my card doesn't work. Now this is not and should not be earth shattering.
It has happened more times than I can count. And each time it is something I have done. Wrong password, etc.
But sure enough, panic sets in. Like Walmart is going to call the local authorities cause me card won't work. This is how this disease works on me.
The littlest thing, and my debit card not working to me is huge, and I am immediately in a state of panic.
I of course call Phyllis June. She can tell my voice something is wrong. I tell where I am and what is going on. She says, "How much is the total?" I tell her $55...she then says that can't be right.
She went on to say she just checked it this morning and I had $65 and some change in the account.
Now, I didn't hear a word she said. All I know is I am doing or did something wrong. Sam's doing his job, trying to keep me in check.
One of his main things he does for me is keep my stress level at a minimum. He can sense immediately when something is wrong. He won't let anyone approach me, and sits right at me feet looking in a 360° radius.
Phyllis June tells me to tell them I will give them her debit card number over the phone and this will be settled. They said they can't do that.
Now I suppose this has happened before. All I know is I am about to run out of the store, and just get home.
She tells the lady she will be right there and handle this. I go find a bench, out of the way and wait.
My mind is racing 100mph. How could this happen? What now? Like I said this is now where near earth shattering, but for me its horrible.
Then, out of no where it hits me. Phyllis June had said I hadn't used my card in almost three weeks. There has to be $66 or whatever in there.
There's not. sigh. I had just gotten my hair cut. Not fifteen minutes before going to Walmart, and of course used my debit card. Taking it from $66 to maybe $55 or whatever.
All I had to do is to realize that I had just used it, and this would have never happened. But my mind doesn't work like that.
I agreed with my wife when she said I hadn't used in over three weeks. Yet, in reality I had just used it fifteen minutes prior to coming to Walmart.
This was all my doings. Not remembering where I had just come from and that I had used the card.
Phyllis called me, said she was right out front. Now it's time to pay the piper. I had caused all of this and was so embarrassed.
I went out, and tried to explain what had happened...she didn't hear a word I was saying. All she said was "You got your haircut and shaved"!!!!
That's all that mattered to her. All this other was small stuff. She said I am so happy you got your hair cut and shaved. She then went into the store with me and everything was fine.
I talk all the time about "small stuff". This indeed was "small stuff". But it took my wife to show me just how small it really was. Once again, just by saying four simple words, "You got your hair cut"....all was fine.
In fact, all was fine all along. I just didn't know it. Thus the life of a dementia patient. We don't like stress, we do what can to avoid it, but sometimes we bring the stress on ourselves.
Not wanting to, not meaning to. Remember the three important things...
Are they Safe?
Are they content?
Are they pain free?
Everything else is just "small stuff". I learned a valuable lesson today. I will never remember it. And that's ok...my wife made everything ok...