General Interest

“So, Mother, Here Are Some Options.”

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This was a very-y-y interesting weekend. I spent a great deal of time in deep conversation with Lou, my husband, about our future and how it may intersect with that of my mother’s. Yes, I know people should have these conversations frequently. But I suspect we’re not much different than most folks. Life just kind of sneaks up on you – and then, there you are. You find yourself at a point where decisions have to be made.

So, what brought about the conversation? I had been unable to reach my 88-year old mother by phone for more than 72 hours. She had not been feeling well and I was getting concerned. Finally, I called the management of the independent living community where she lives, and asked that they check in on her. She called me back, about an hour later, flustered, but fine. Bottom line, these scares can’t continue. My concern for her is more than I am sometimes unable to reach her when she knocks the phone off the hook. That concern is the knot in the pit of my stomach that knows she needs a lot more help than what I’m able to give her, and she needs a lot more monitoring than she’s currently willing to accept.

So, where do we stand with things? Well, I see three options. The first option is that we (my far-flung siblings and me along with my mother) “tidy up” an apartment inundated with years of hoarded and disorganized mess and make room for an aide to assist with daily living activities. The second option is that she come live with me and Lou. And the third option is that we do nothing and wait for the inevitable tragedy to strike – at which point either fate or the authorities will step in and provide some action steps.

I’m going to try and convince her to accept option two: move in with Lou and me. And I suspect she’ll know in her heart that something needs to be done, and that she’ll be more amenable to listening than she has in the past. Any suggestions you can offer will be appreciated.

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