I Ran Out of Zip Codes

I have really missed writing posts the past couple of weeks – the word that came up to describe how I felt about it is constipated.   Considering my past experience with the drug study, it seems rather appropriate.  Anyway, I am still bone weary and to be honest, my neck and shoulders have been very uncomfortable even though I now use the mouse with my left hand.

The last time I wrote was almost 2 weeks ago and I was back making calls.  Providence has certain zip codes they serve from the West Seattle site, so I went through all of them – though decided Beacon Hill was just a bit too far.  I looked at a place in Seatac, a house run by a woman, her mother plus she has a 13 year old special needs son.  she only takes 2 people, the woman there had a stroke but moves around quite well.  It has a family feeling and maria has experience with dementia, my only concern was there really wasn’t enough socialization for Mom.  Back the the lists.

A lot of places are private pay, they can’t afford to pay their caregivers on Medicaid.  I can understand that, though I would like to have seen the Star Lake one – bet it was nice.  The social worker emailed me before she left on holiday a name and number, so Eddie, Kathy and I went out to see it.  It is near where the other one that fell through is and it wasn’t hard to find.  Didi is a RN and only takes referrals, she doesn’t advertise.  Mom would have her own room – a bit small – and is right across from the bathroom.  There is a living room where she can be quiet if she likes or spent time in the tv room with the other residents.  There are 5 others there and one man has a cat in his room.  Didi says she is very generous in sharing the cat.  The other residents are well functioning and eat together as well as games and other activities.  it is a quiet street and Mom could go walking when she likes – they would make sure she has someone with her.  She would also go to the Center, probably 2 days a week.  I must admit, we all had a Yes and No reaction to it – I know no house will have everything perfect.

So I went back to my lists and spent a day calling – I found 3 more and went with Kathy to check them out.

The house in West Seattle  is a small house for 6 people – with a urine smell.  It feels too small for the number of people and the tv is on the wall of the bedroom.  There’s really no place for her to have some quiet time.  All residents are from Providence.  Kathy feels it is warehousing and not the right place for Mom.

      The first house in Kent with Gloria is a nice, clean place but she would be sharing a room – there really isn’t a space of her own.  The bed is open on both sides and Mom needs to have the bed against the wall for her feeling of security.  Gloria and her husband live there, the other residents don’t seem all that alert.  They do take the people on outings and there is some interaction.

       The other one in Kent is on Railroad Ave – right across the street from the tracks.  It is not a nice neighborhood, though the house is new and spacious.  The room they showed us isn’t certified yet – it is rather dark and she only has a curtain on the door.  There is another room with another lady, the shared door means Mom goes through a corner of the other one’s room.  It is Saliem and her husband and two young sons – they live upstairs and the residents are downstairs.  It too has a family feeling like Gloria, but not much access outside.  If you just want to stay inside, it is a good place.  Not sure how much interaction because the two guys in the back prefer to be in their room and the other 2 we met said Hello.

I had to sit down and write out for myself the pros and cons of each.  I crossed off Railroad Ave right away – the trains are loud and it really isn’t for Mom.  When I looked at Gloria’s, it had a lot of good points but more drawbacks.  I decided to go visit Didi again , that wasMonday.  I had a nice talk with her and she had said she  felt after observing and talking with Mom at the Center that Mom would fit in.  Didi said she only takes people she feels will fit in with the other residents – she has had several people look at the room but they weren’t a fit.

I have been having a lot of pain in my left hip all week – I looked it up in “Feeling Buried Alive Never Die” to see what she had to say.  The first one on the list is “fear of making a major decision”.  So spot on!!!!   It is one thing to make a major decision for myself, it is more difficult for someone else.  I had a hard time saying yes, not sure what was holding me back.  But I finally told Didi yes, I would bring my Mom to her home.  She thanked me for trusting her with Mom.

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