Posts Tagged ‘Mother’

Life Post Mom

November 4, 2012

I am so happy to hear from my older sister, she wrote two emails and sent some pictures of Ocean Grove.  They were very lucky, not a lot of damage and the sound of the furnace coming on was a sweet sound.

     We saw Mom yesterday and I saw her on Tuesday but haven’t told her anything, I think she would just be worried.  Actually, there isn’t a lot to talk to her about, so I am resorting to things in the past.  Some she remembers, much she doesn’t.  Keeps asking where her parents are, if they are dead and when I say yes, I tell her they are watching over her and preparing a place.  One thing, Didi, the owner, is amazed at how well and easily she has begun to settle in. Didi has adopted her and the other residents really like having her..  She thought there would be a lot of resistance because she had been in her house for so long, what a delight to find Mom is adjusting well.  Mom keeps saying they are very nice to her and she likes it there.  Apparently we moved her just at the right time.  I am still tired and there doesn’t seem to be much let up in having to do things for her.  This is a whole new learning experience for me as well as Mom.
I sent in the forms and papers to DSHS for Medicaid on Friday and now have to round up some other things I know I will need.    Funny, it still hasn’t really sunk in that Mom is not living here any more.  We have her bedroom door closed but sometimes when I get up in the night, I expect her to come out and want the bathroom at the same time.  I have to tell myself consciously I can make a late or early appointment, or come home later than I planned – I don’t have to fit into caregiver hours or Center hours.  Trying to live between 9 and 3 when the rest of the world doesn’t is very confining.  I wonder when “I know that I know” it is just Eddie and me?
Our eating habits are different now, we can make things with tomatoes – they really bothered Mom even though she loves them – as well as not having as much meat.  We are eating lighter and our food bills are probably lower.  Things last longer as well, Mom still has a good appetite and enjoys her food.  I think that makes it easier for Didi as well.  Didi said yesterday her blood pressure is good and she is doing very well, plus they check her out when she is at the Center.  Sometimes Mom tells me things but no one else, so I talked to Didi about it.  She wants to know so she can check it out and see what might be going on.  Tuesday Mom said she had been getting dizzy, so I told Judy the caregiver and then also the nurse at the Center – no idea what it is.  Mom has also been known not to tell anyone when something is hurting or bothering her – that doesn’t help.  Must be the stoic Yankee New Englander in her.
I must admit, it is so nice to get up when I want to, take a shower when I want to – before I had to either get up before 7 a.m. to have it or wait until after 9.  I can stand and enjoy the hot water for a long time as well, I do enjoy the new bathroom – the best room in the house.  I can also play my iTunes radio stations all the time and as loud as I want – Mom tended to find tv too much noise and would go along with the iTunes radio for a while.  I remember growing up and there came a time when we were watching tv Mom would ask for a little peace and quiet.  I have plenty of time while Eddie’s gone, he isn’t that fond of opera as I am.  Puccini is my main man!
We have also been slowly cleaning out some of the stuff that has been sitting in the basement for decades, my Dad couldn’t throw things away and neither could my Mom.  The recycle wheely bin gets filled up quite fast these days.  I am trying to clean out the office but it is slow going, seems to all come back very quickly.  There is so much to go through, I don’t know where to start.  All I know is it is one section at a time – now which section is first?  Then I need to decide what to with things that shouldn’t be thrown away.  I need to check with my sisters to see what they would like – they have first choice.  There’s no doubt about it, I won’t sitting twittaling my thumbs wondering what to do.

Rather Tense Week

November 2, 2012

Along with a lot of other people, I have been concerned about my sister on the Jersey Shore.  She had emailed last weekend that if we didn’t hear from her, she had lost power.  No one had any idea it would end up the way it has, so I have been wondering how she has fared.  She was able to leave a message on my other sister’s phone  yesterday to let us know she is fine,  no electricity.  Candy had found a blogger from Ocean Grove, so there were pictures of the  pilings where the pier used to be.  Apparently there is damage but seem to have avoided the worst of it.  When Hurricane Irene went through, Ellen never lost the electricity.  Now there is talk of a Nor’easter coming – let’s hope people have electricity before that happens.  My heart goes out to all those who are still wondering or who have lost loved ones in this storm.

While I was waiting for news, I have been working on two sets of paperwork.  Actually, I have been working on the Medicaid ones for quite a while.  I have begun to see there is more to my Mom’s financial state than I realized, so that has meant contacting companies or people to find out more details.  I have had to fax my Durable Power of Attorney to so many places just so they would talk to me.  One is in Rhode Island and when I fax, I just get a message saying I am not authorized to use this system.  I called the company again, the very nice lady told me it wasn’t me, it was them – I was given the right fax number.  So I will continue to try until it goes through.  Heck of a time to have to deal with East Coast businesses.

I went over to see the social worker Denise to have her go over the forms we worked on last week.  I want to be sure I have as much info and the forms are done correctly – I hope that will speed the process.  I am so glad I went because I had forgotten some things we talked about, so now the forms are ready.  I still have some things to copy but I hope to get it in the mail today.  I am sure they will come back with requests, I wanted to eliminate as many of those as I can.  I even found my birth certificate from the hospital – I have a copy from Sacramento – yes, I am a California girl, a native prune picker – that I am still looking for in our papers.  Moving several times seems to misplace some things and turn up others.

We are also applying for a mortgage for this house, it seems the most sensibly financially at this point.  So we have had forms to fill out and sign, then we were sent a slew full on-line – we just had to eSign.  A new thing – they just have what looks like a yellow sticky flag that says Sign Here.  When I click on it, it shows it typed in blue, then later when Eddie did his part, I saw my name had changed styles.  They ask the most interesting questions, we didn’t have to do this stuff when we bought our house in Fort Wayne, Stephens City or Bethlehem.  We try to make things as simple as possible, even so, it seemed as if we had a lot to sign.  The last time was probably the mid – 90’s in Fort Wayne.  I suspect the flow of forms and requests will be coming in for that as well as the ones for Medicaid.  If I had my druthers, I’d druther do one set, then do the next set after the first was finished.  At no time have I been offered my druthers.

Just came home and checked messages – while I was in the shower this morning, my older sister called to say they are fine, no damage but no electricity.  I am so sorry I missed her call.  I definitely have to get a phone with a louder ringer!  I also finished the Medicaid application and finally mailed it today.  Maybe I can relax a bit and not have nightmares about not finding papers I need; actually sleep comfortably since nothing can happen until they receive it Monday.  Still papers to collect – I will start back again on Monday.Now I have to work on the mortgage stuff.  This afternoon I have my massage and I am SOOO looking forward to it.  Even managed to have my hair cut as well.  That is mainly due to my foulups today and last Friday – I have an appointment with a client on Nov 9th, yet for some reason I keep thinking it was this Friday – same for last week.  I knew it was the 9th but I kept putting in my calendar on the wrong Friday – this hasn’t happened before and I am wondering if I am going nuts or just have too much to deal with at the moment.  It’s time to pat myself on the back and say “Good Job!” rather than beat myself up for not having every single solitary paper and form absolutely and completely done perfectly.

RA Consequences of the Move

October 21, 2012

When I wrote the post yesterday, it was mainly about the move, Mom and  the aftermath.  I can’t believe I forgot to mention that I was miserable because my right side was so painful in the neck and shoulder.  It was as bad as last year after I spent so much time on the computer doing quotes for a client.  I didn’t do much in the way of lifting or doing things, though I suppose not wearing my collar while I worked on the inventory lists on the computer might have done it.  At times it was like an icepick in my shoulder, I couldn’t move any way that wasn’t uncomfortable – even the hot tub at the spa didn’t really do it.  My knees were also very unhappy – they have been uncomfortable for awhile – could it be The Preparation from my Tai Chi lesson?  I was really hurting when I was taking stuff to the garage to put in the car.

So not only have I been exhausted, I have been in pain as well – let’s face it, that doesn’t help with energy.  Stress causes difficulty and flare ups; that means the body is using all her energy to fight the RA and flare up.  Not much energy left for anything else.  I have done the things I have to, some things for myself – like Olympus Spa – and on Monday I went to see Dr. Cheryl, my chiropractor.  She was able to take most of the icepick out of my shoulder, so I was more comfortable.  I saw Debye for my massage and learned I have some emotions stuck in my abdomen.  People have told me there is a lot of emotion connected with this move and the whole situation – so far I haven’t really identified it.  At the moment I am not ready to go there – though I was in the bathroom a few days ago and had a knowing there is more emotion below the surface than just the feelings of frustration, resentment, anger, etc, from the past few months and years.

I went to see Mom on Tuesday, she was sleepy and not quite with it, so I wonder if this has tired her out a lot as well.  I saw her again on Friday and she was more alert and with it.  However, both times she asked why she is there and if she has to stay.  I told her it was her home now and she is safe as well as taken care of by the caregivers and Didi.  I have no answer for her other than that – I know I can put myself on a guilt trip and although I am not boarding that bus, I felt a foot or two on the step.  I know it has only been a week and a half, it does upset me to have her ask.  She keeps asking about her parents, if I have seen them.  Then she asks if they are dead – it seems as if it is the first time she heard it.  I tell her they are watching over her and preparing a place for her, they are waiting for her.  Then she wants to know how she can get there – all I can tell her is I don’t know, no one has come back to tell us how it all works.  I don’t know if that helps or not.  I am wondering if my visits are making harder or not.  Apparently she was asking about me and she was glad to see me.  She says it is a nightmare there, but they are good to her – how accurate are her perceptions?  I need to ask Didi what works for her about visits.

I know this is stress for me, not good for the body, mind or spirit.  Several people have told me I have done a wonderful job taking care of Mom as long as I have.  Here is that negative take coming up – I didn’t do it to the absolute nth degree, I have be irritable and have yelled at her – not patient enough.  I have to stop and tell myself taking care of her has come to affect my health and my marriage, I have to protect myself or I will be back in rehab (if I am lucky!)  For so much of my life I have felt responsible for the world, of making other people happy at the expense of myself.  Now I am learning to switch gears to take care of myself first so I will have overflow for others.  Are they childhood messages or the ways a middle child operates?  Probably some of both – my older sister Ellen would tell me “Ditch it, girl!” in no uncertain terms.

As a result of the shoulder and neck pain, I haven’t been able to really use the computer or pen to write about all of it – it really bugs me because it is one of the ways I can release and clear out a lot of stuff I don’t want to hold on to any more.  I also have projects I want to work on and there is my business that has languished for two years so that there isn’t much of it left.  I wonder how it will feel to be finally rested and have energy – it is been so long.  Certainly it is easier to do things with a lot of energy – I just cleaned the new bathroom, had to rest, now it is time to do the floor.  Imagine doing it all at once and not having trouble bending and reaching, plus have the strength and elbow grease for those places that really need it.  I am looking forward to that!

A New Beginning

October 20, 2012

I have no idea what to call this post, it feels as if it has been a very long time since I was able to write about what’s been happening.    Maybe something will come to me as I write.

On the 11th of October I moved my Mom to an adult family home – I could not have accomplished it without Kathy’s help.  Mom left for the Center , then Kathy came over around 10.  She ran 3 loads of wash so everything would be clean for Mom as she started out in her new home.   Kathy knew what to pack and did a lot of it.  Most everything was labeled except a few things and ready to go.  I am not sure what I was doing, only that I was busy and time was passing by very quickly.  I think I spent time making inventory lists – except my mouse was losing battery power so it took so much longer as it disconnected and then reconnected.

By the time we were ready to leave, it was after 1.  We put things in both cars – Kathy was able to put Mom’s white chair in her car.  That way Kathy would have her car when she wanted to leave.  As we unpacked the cars, I realized it was getting near time to pick up Mom; Kathy, Didi and the caretaker Judy helped unpack while I went over to pick up Mom.  I was concerned about how Mom would take to the move – she had been fine with it when I told her Sunday night when she initiated the conversation.  So I decided I would just take it as it came and not anticipate negativity.

When I went to the Center, I couldn’t find Mom, she had gone walkabout.  Apparently she gets a bit restless about that time of day and they take her for a walk around the facility.  So we found each other and we went to the car.  We were fine until it seemed a long time to her – she wanted to know where we were going.  I told her we were going to the new home we talked about.  She did seem to think it was a long way away – from West Seattle to DesMoines is a bit far.  I told her Kathy was waiting for her, she had helped fix up her room.  On the whole it worked out very well.

I will admit to being exhausted by then, so tired I couldn’t see straight.  Kathy had to leave to get some sleep because she was working all night.  I stayed a bit longer, then said goodbye to Mom – they took her to see John’s cat in his room, so I don’t think she noticed I left.  I was feeling a bit faint when I got home – I hadn’t had time for lunch – not a smart move.  Eddie took me out to dinner and I felt better after something to eat.  I thought I would go right to sleep because I was so tired – not that night.  I think I was too tired to sleep plus I was uncomfortable as well.  So I didn’t have much sleep that night, getting up at 4 to go with Eddie wasn’t a big deal.  I was spending the day at Olympus Spa by myself and just sit and soak, have tea and lunch there.  After awhile in the 104 degree pool I was feeling really good, I had trouble keeping from falling asleep.  After awhile I went into the lounge room and used the foot massager for awhile on both feet – boy, that was great too.

Then I went into the tea room and enjoyed some jasmine tea and lemon rooibos – sat and read – unfortunately I forgot my book in the car.  That was okay, they had magazines.  The next time I do it, I am going to take a notebook and write.  I went back to the pool for a bit longer until it was time for lunch.  One thing I noticed that concerned me, my hip scar and that area was sore – maybe too long in hot water.

I had a lovely lunch the went back for a little more tea.  After a bit I decided to do the foot massager again but they were all being used.  I was having trouble staying awake, so I got dressed and went out for some fresh air.  That helped and then went back up to the Future of Flight.  I was glad to see several people up there, it has been many months since I was last there.  Did called to let me know how Mom was doing, then talked to Mom – she asked if she could stay there and I told definitely she could.  Then Eddie was ready to go home and I slept off and on all the way home.  We had dinner and went to bed early.  Now that night I slept very well.

I did not expect this drag my ass tired, I figured tired but not this much.  Several people have said I have had a very emotional upheaval and shift – I am not sure what all that is.  To be honest, I don’t know what I feel nor does it seem to have sunk in yet.  I am just going from one day to the next until I feel more rested.  I’ve had some days or periods when I was feeling a bit rested, then back to tired again.  The last few nights I have been sleeping better – last night, not so much.  Fortunately there aren’t any things that need my immediate attention and study.  Rest is foremost on my agenda right now.

I Ran Out of Zip Codes

October 7, 2012

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.

Square One Again

September 19, 2012

I want to whinge so much today, I am feeling sorry for myself, frustrated and to be honest, tired of fitting my life around my Mom’s; canceling or postponing what I want to do to accommodate what she needs done.  How can one person require so much from so many people?  Yes, I do resent it and am angry at times – still haven’t taken all the emotion out of it yet.

I have spent the past few days waiting to hear if things are finally set for Mom to move into the adult family home – yesterday I had a call from the owner of the home, she has decided not to do what is necessary because it is just for one person.  So I am back to square one.  That means today  I will spend on the phone calling homes on the list to see if there is a vacancy and then go visit.  I feel discouraged but not as upset as I was last Wednesday when the glitch came up at the last minute.  I did ask God, my angels, spirit guides and master teachers to work it out – this or something better.  I was willing to start over again – not my preference – and so here I am.  That means there is something better out there.  The difference is that I have a much better idea of what I am looking for than when I first started looking the last time.  So it is “pull up my socks and get on with it”.

Before I could do anything, I needed Mom to be out of the house, but the van didn’t come until 10:30.  Then I had to call and find out how to cancel her Costco credit card, then fax info over to someone new to see if finally I can accomplish it.  Then I needed to shower and dress; wow, did that shower feel good, especially knowing I was alone and didn’t have Mom standing at the door.  Then I decided to have a cup of coffee – also had to water the roses because they are parched from no rain.  Then I realized it was after noon, so I fixed lunch and relaxed for a bit.  Then it was time to start calling other adult family homes to  see what was available.

I had talked to Denise in the morning about the situation and she is going to check 6 of the others in  Des Moines and I was going to call the ones in the Burien area.  Denise suggested giving them her name and number so she can check to be sure they meet the requirements providence has, that way I would only be seeing the ones that  would  work.  Out of the ones I called or checked out, there were 5 that were possibilities, so I told them to contact Denise for whatever information they needed.  I emailed her the names and she sent back saying she had 12 to screen.  Were they ones I sent her or did she find 6 others as well?  I really don’t know.

I have had two call me back to say they have tried to contact Denise but the center is closed today.   I appreciated that very much and I will see how it all goes.  Tomorrow after my massage, I have lists of the other zip codes they service and I will call them to see what might work.  I feel like the little girl digging through the manure pile because she is positive there i s a pony in there somewhere.  I know there is a place for Mom and also a gift for me in all this, I just don’t see it at the moment.

Most people are very nice when I call and ask about the home, if they take Medicaid and now also Providence.  I think it can narrow the field, that can be a good thing.  I did talk to one woman I really liked, she doesn’t have a vacancy but one of her ladies was just put on Hospice and may have a vacancy in the possible new future.  She suggested calling her in a while to see how things are.

It is an uncomfortable and discouraging experience at times, but there is also a feeling of accomplishment after going through the lists and calling.  I find myself having trouble getting started, then once I get going, I am okay.  It is easier than when I did it the first time, but I would dearly love to have someone tell me they have the perfect place for Mom and  it has everything she needs.  I’m not holding my breath for that one.  I will soldier on and see what happens tomorrow.

I am so worn out and tired from all this, I feel like crawling into bed and sleeping until the situation is resolved.  No chance of that without me doing the work and  going to see the places.  Kathy said she would go with me and that helps so much.  She notices things I don’t and I am relying on her knowledge and experience to help me make a good decision for Mom.

Moving Day That Wasn’t

September 12, 2012

When I went to Breakfast Club this morning, it was Moving Day for Mom to her adult family home.  I had spent yesterday creating lists of what she will take and getting some things ready.  Kathy came over this morning to help me choose her clothes and I got to use my permanent marking pen to put Mom’s name on the labels of her clothes. Kathy did laundry so everything was clean and ready to go.  She came by yesterday afternoon to have Mom pack a suitcase so she would feel she had a part in the process.  At the time Kathy left, she had some questions that I needed to ask Jas today.

I called Jas and asked the questions and she answered them for me.  Then she told me a situation had come up about  one of the requirements from Providence.  She was checking on it and would let me know.  I called Denise, the social worker, to see what she knew and what was happening.  I must admit, it really upset me that  there was a glitch that looked as if moving wasn’t going to happen – I might even have to start from square one again.  I felt like crying and Kathy said to just let it out – so I did.  There is still some left but I think I got a lot of it out then.  There is disappointment, let down, upset, frustration and  I am not sure what the emotion is about not having my life back after all.  I will admit to counting down the days and thinking last night it was the last night Mom would sleep here.

Kathy suggested we go out for lunch because I needed to get out of the house.  As we were leaving, Jas called and said she was going to take care of the requirement fully.  I said that was great, that we could do the move next Tuesday or Wednesday when everything was verified  by the social worker.  That way it isn’t a hurried situation.

I was thinking this morning that it was in God’s hands, whatever works.  It was a little hard to remember that when the glitch surfaced.  I got into a panic and thank goodness Kathy was there to calm me down and it is only a glitch.   I did do a few “God help me!” while setting an intention of surrendering, allowing and being willing.   The good part about it is that we have decided what to pack for her, so that is done.  I have gotten most of the items labelled, though some present a challenge.  So I will have to work out how to label those in the next week or so.  The other thing is that if I had to go looking again,  I have a much better idea of the kind of place I want for Mom.

Since all of this came to a head about noon time or later, it throws an spanner in the works for me.  Sheila who assigns caregivers didn’t think she would be able to have one for tomorrow morning because it is short notice.  She isn’t sure about Friday either and she will check to see if Aster can come Sunday and  someone for Sunday.  Also, Eddie is coming home from 3 days in Spokane, about the time Mom will come back from the Center.  Two people need to be picked up and there is only one of me.  So I will collect Mom from the Center tomorrow, come home and wait for Eddie to call and then the two of us will pick him  up at the airport.  He called late this afternoon and was very surprised when I told him the two of us would be there to pick him up.

If no one shows up tomorrow, I have to be here until the van comes, but I have some business for Mom I need to take care of before my massage.  And I AM NOT going to cancel my massage, I have had to cancel too many things lately to take care of things for her.  This is for me and I so need it!

It has been an emotional roller coaster all day, I am ready to sleep, I just hope I can and not oversleep tomorrow.  I did this morning but was still on time for Breakfast Club.  Mom has been asleep since at least 6 – not sure if she will be up wandering around later or not.  Yes, this too will pass.  There is a purpose, a gift and a lesson in all of this, right now I am too tired to look for it.  It will all reveal itself at some point.  The one thing Kathy said was that I dodged a bullet.  Suppose I had moved her there and she had settled in, then had to take her out because a glitch happened.  That would be so much harder for Mom, I am not sure if she would transition a second time.  Strangely enough, Mom hasn’t asked about moving, she kept asking where her mother is – this is something new, asking about one or both parents.  Too bad I don’t have a good answer for her.

Now Mom Knows

September 11, 2012

SUNDAY

I just realized the post I wrote yesterday was still only a draft – I was sure I published it.  Well, now it is published for all the world to see.

I must admit, I have been dreading to day because I needed to tell Mom about the new home – I didn’t think she would be too happy about it.  Yesterday I talked to Kathy on the phone about how to approach it and she gave me some very good suggestions.  I had been wondering what to say and worried about how she would take the news.  I realized, at least in my head, that I needed to give it all to God, my spirit guides, angels and master teachers as well as Archangel Michael to help Mom have peace.  So I  had to really talk to myself about it, to release all the worrying and over analyzing, to just let it all go.  I truly had to put it in their hands for them to give me the words, actions, attitude, thoughts, etc. to tell Mom.  I had to not only just show up and get out of the way in my head – it had to be in my heart as well.  Strangely enough, I was fairly calm, though had trouble going to sleep last night.  I kept thinking about Mom, the things I could say, how she might react – second guessing about things that hadn’t even happened.  So I decided I needed something else to think about, so I switched to quilting – that actually did it for awhile.

When I got up this morning she was very confused, asking if this was her parents house, etc.  She ended up go in and out of bed 2 or 3 times – I was feeling anxious because I wanted to “get it over”.   But I knew that was only for my benefit, this had to be  about Mom and when the best time  would be for her.  So I waited until she was fully awake, dressed and had had breakfast.  Then I sat her down at the dining room table to tell her.  I mentioned the house she had stayed for a couple weeks and the lady there, Lucy; not really but that didn’t matter.  I told her I had found another home for her, a real house with a large yard, a place to be outside when it is nice and  how pretty it is.  I said the lady who owns it met her at the Center and talked to her; thought she was sweet and made her laugh.  She liked Mom so much she has invited Mom to come and live in her home.  I mentioned a little dog who loves people that comes to visit and there are some other ladies there.  She wanted to know when and I said on Wednesday.  I feel as if I had smacked her in the face, she seemed a bit stunned.  So far she isn’t angry, though she wonders how she is going to be able to do it all.  I told her I would take care of it for her.

I called Kathy and told her I had told her and she seemed to take it well.  Kathy planned to come over and visit, bring lunch for the two of them.  After I hung up, I made phone ring and pretended it was Kathy and told Mom she was coming to visit.  Mom was delighted because she really likes Kathy.  She stayed for about an hour or more, Aster and I were in the office talking.  So far Mom hasn’t said much, maybe she is trying to process it.  We’ll see what happens.

TUESDAY

Mom didn’t say anything about moving to her new home, though Monday morning when I told Helima it would be her last Monday because Mom is going to a new home, Mom seemed confused.  So I just reminded her we had talked about it the day before and she  just said “Oh”.  Then  yesterday afternoon and evening she asked if she is going somewhere and when.  She seemed okay with it – I still don’t know how much has registered.  Kathy is coming to help today and tomorrow – I think having her will reassure Mom.

As for me, I am so tired and dragged out, I find everything takes so much energy and effort.  I did go to my caregiver support group yesterday afternoon – I think I have a difficult time, but the others have so much more to deal with than I do.  I did make an appointment for a massage with Debye on thursday morning, then I need to pick up Eddie in the afternoon.  Friday I want to meet Charlotte and accept her generous offer of the weighted baby doll – other than that, I don’t know.  At the moment I haven’t planned ahead, just want to sleep.  I know things will look different when I am more rested.

Relief And A Smack In The Face

September 9, 2012

Thursday was supposed to be a day for me, but it ended up mostly about Mom.  I had a call in the afternoon from Denise, the social worker – Jas had visited with Mom at the Day Center and thought she was sweet.  She has agreed to have Mom come and live in her adult family home.  She can come on Tuesday or Wednesday of next week.  Yikes!!!  It was such a relief that everyone agreed to have Mom live there, but it was like a smack in the face to realize it would be next week.  I had to just let it sink in and simmer on the back burner for a bit.   When I called her, it was the beginning of family training.  I was working on quotes for a client in between phone calls, so I worked on that for awhile to let it settle and not feel so immediate.

Of course, the next thing is telling Mom and making the transition.  I called Kathy on Friday and asked if she would help me with it since she knows Mom quite well.  I also called Jas to thank her for having Mom come to live in the house and to decide what day.  I’m not sure if it was relief or just letting go of stress about it that made me feel so tired – I have been exhausted for the past several weeks.  I went to see my chiropractor in the morning and went to an engagement lunch for my friend Chloe Ann – I know her from Breakfast Club and have been living vicariously through her for the past year as she has been doing online dating.  It is something she never thought she would do, but with help from friends, she did the preparation work to be ready to find the right man.  She feels she has and they are going to be married at the end of the month.  He lives in Vancouver, Wa and they plan to live there and rent ChloeAnn’s condo for a while.  I’m glad I had some time for my own things, then I drove up to the Center to sign the papers and pick up Mom.  She didn’t know I was coming, nor does she know about the move.

I talked to the social worker and learned some things about Mom, some of the things she does at the Center and some things I didn’t know she liked.  One thing she told me was that Mom really enjoys holding the weighted baby doll they have – that was a surprise.  So I decided it might be a good idea to buy her one for the new home.  Of course I checked with my doll expert Charlotte.  She has been collecting, repairing and making clothes for her dolls and also when she worked in the doll shop.  She offered to give Mom one of her weighted baby dolls, a girl in pink.  It is a really nice one and I am so amazed at such a generous gift.  When I was at the Center, I asked to see the baby doll she has been holding so I could see if it is similar to the one Charlotte has.  I think so.  So I will happily accept her gift for Mom.  She also has been enjoying holding a very large bear – I checked my supplier and they have one I can order so Mom has another option.  I may not do both all at once, just see how things go.

I talked to Kathy today to find out how to start the process of  transition – she said we need to tell Mom now, plus she will come by to visit after I tell her to help reassure her.  So I will tell her tomorrow morning and then Kathy will come by about noon with salads to have lunch.  I’ll just tell Mom Kathy called and wanted to come and visit.  We’ll see what happens after that.  She emphasized I need to make it positive and to say that Jas has invited her to come there to live.  I am just going to ask God, my angels, spirit guides and master teachers to give me the words, actions, attitude, etc. and I will just show up and get out of the way.  Otherwise I will worry and agonized about what to say and wonder if I “get it right”.  Unfortunately I tend t0 over analyze things, driving myself nuts.

There has been a small part of me that has been feeling a bit guilty for doing this.  The social worker said something that helped me feel better about it – she said Mom is at a good stage for the transition because she is still social.  If I wait too long, it may be much harder for Mom to adjust.  Jas suggested not seeing for a week, maybe two while Mom adjusts.  Then visit for only 15 minutes, bringing her something.  then Jas will distract her and I need to leave quickly.  One step at a time.

Waiting Isn’t Always Easy

September 6, 2012

This came from the Universe today – I could have used it earlier but no doubt this is just the right time.  I have been apprehensive, concerned, scared and unsure in finding an adult family home for my Mom; this has really hit home for me.

Lee, when you move, I move. When you reach, I reach. And when you go the extra mile, I clear the way. But not a moment sooner.

Which is why before you move, reach, and go, things sometimes look so scary. 

 Just like that,

    The Universe

Lee, “I do” if “you do.” Settled? I now pronounce us unstoppable.

I so appreciate the daily note from The Universe during the week – so often it is spot on to what I am thinking, doing or wondering about in my life.  Certainly finding a place for my Mom has been one of those very uncomfortable situations; I am so grateful for The Universe already creating the solution (even though I wasn’t really sure) and all the people who have been helping me all along the way.  I am so glad I don’t have to do it all by myself – I would be bouncing off the walls a rubber room by now.  I have had help from Providence, Kathy has been a great help and Eddie as well.  When it comes to Mom’s financial and business affairs, I have had a lot of help from my Networking Breakfast Club – Dave our elder law attorney, people who know about houses and property, others who have had to deal with the same kind of situation, caregivers, etc.  I have such support from friends and family to help me take care of myself and have a more objective view of the situation – I am still on the emotional  end of it, not as much but still there.  Plus God, angels, spirit guides and master teaches to help and guide me.

Monday on Labor Day I called around and found one place with an opening.  Eddie and I went down there and spent almost 2 hours with Jaswir.  (She said I was the first one to pronounce it properly.  She goes by Jas)   This is a double wide manufactured home that has room for 6 people.  The room Mom would share is what used to be the master suite, so it is larger and has a bigger closet, and a bath they both share.  Her room mate is a woman with Dementia, though quite articulate and friendly.  The other woman seem to be at about the same level of function as Mom and they interact with each other.  They eat together and there is a covered back porch as well as a nice area in the front they like to sit – Jas said they love to be outside when it is sunny.  I had a better feeling about this home and arranged for Kathy to come and see it with us yesterday.  I was pleased that she liked what she saw and when she talked to Jas – she can see and notice things that I don’t know to ask.  So today Jas is going to meet Mom at the Center and assess her level of function and the Providence records.  She has worked with them before and knows Mom’s doctor, Kathy thinks that is a real plus.  So I am hoping they can reach an agreement.

This is where I really have to let go and put it in God’s hands – this or something better.  I am not anxious to go calling any more, but I willing to do it if it is necessary.  Yesterday was attorney and mortgage day – we talked to Dave and Tom to see the options for the house and what will work for us.  No decision but now we are checking to see if refinancing with a loan of our own and some extra to fix it up is in our budget.  Brad came by and we explained what we are thinking of doing, he will now give us and estimate and see how that fits with a loan with a reasonable monthly payment.

I want the whole things settled right now, but it is a time of constant patience because so much of it depends on other people doing their job.  It is hard to be patient, I’m doing my best.  This has been a time of learning and growing – not always a comfortable process.  I have been learning about myself as well as about Dementia; it seems to be more clear at times when I look back at what has just happened.  I am realizing a lot of childhood programs and triggers, plus seeing how I have been influenced in my adult years with out realizing it.  Now it seems as if I am growing stronger and more adult as Mom diminishes and is weaker.  She has always been a very strong influence on my, maybe when she is gone I can finally be myself.  That is what my friend Kathie Brodie found after her mom died.  The other important things she learned what what her mom was teaching her – it was never clear and when she talked to another friend who talks to angels, she finally understood.  It was her aunt who said she could now be herself.

It truly has been an uncomfortable time, that means I have been and am growing, stretching and learning.  Truly out of my comfort zone.  Several friends have told me that I will be glad I was here for my Mom. that I will have no regrets.  I admit I  regret I have not been as patient as I wanted to be, it has been hard to be with her as a friend – I am hoping when she is settled in her new home that we can have a more enjoyable relationship.


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