Monday, October 15, 2012
Blog 47: Changes Coming Soon
Some progress has been made in the communication with my sister Renee, after sending her the article I posted in my last blog post. She emailed me and I wrote her back and told her I want us to be able to move forward and put these things that troubled us in the past behind us for now. They can be addressed at a later date if we need to talk about it. Right now I think it’s important to focus on healing and moving forward, and when we feel that our emotions and our sister relationship is in a good, safe, healthy place, then we can talk about those things (if we need to, and I know we will).
We spoke on the phone and have continued with emails. Some of which were not very positive as she wanted to discuss some issues from the past that only brought up those painful memories, but all in all, I think we are moving forward. I had to bite my tongue a few times. She said she appreciates me reaching out. Hopefully, we are starting our next chapter, and it will be one of loving, caring, supportive sisters. One thing I know for sure, our mom is loved so much, by each and every one of us. That never was in doubt.
So much has happened in the past couple of weeks that I can’t possibly go into all of the details. But to put it simply…my mom’s money will be gone by the end of this year, and she needs to be moved out of her current facility to a nursing home that has an available certified Medicaid bed in a memory care unit. Renee found one close to where she is now, and I asked her if I could make phone calls to try to find one closer to the rest of the family in Mom’s hometown. I found that most places have waiting lists, if they even accept title 19 at all. I believe that one can be found, but it is going to take more than me making phone calls. Renee wants me to come back ASAP and help her with paperwork and placement. Most likely, Mom will not be moved to her hometown, which makes me sad, because I know one of my sisters will not come around should this happen.
In the past year, Mom has shown some decline in her memory and concentration. She is often incontinent, and it can take her a half hour to brush her teeth and change her clothes. The agitation has become worse, she walks much slower, and she is just slipping away.
Nobody wants Mom to be moved to a skilled-care nursing home. It’s scary, not knowing how she will adjust and what kind of care she will receive. I offered to come back and take care of Mom for awhile, and Renee said if I did she would hand over guardianship to me, to which I said no. I live in Arizona, I would have to bring Mom back here with me (she’d never handle the flight) and take her away from the family, or else sell my house and move there, and that’s not an option for me at this time. I can’t possibly make these changes right now. Plus, Mom’s house is gone, her furniture is gone, and now her money is gone. My plan is not the same as it was last year when I offered to come back and be Mom’s caregiver. Renee wouldn’t let me then. I had predicted she would be willing to relinquish guardianship once it got to this point. I don’t know how I can do it now, but I will find a way if she will help me.
The latest news is that I am going to fly back to Chicago and take my mom to my daughter’s apartment to care for her. This isn't set in stone, but it is a real possibility. Renee said Mom needs to be moved out of her current location by the end of the month, or shortly thereafter, and she wants me take Mom and see how it works out before she places her elsewhere. She suggested I do it for at least a week. I don’t know how long I will be there, I don’t know if it’s going to work out, I don’t know how Mom is going to handle the new environment, I don't know anything right now. All I know is that I want to do whatever I am able to do for my Mom. Renee is giving me this chance, and for once, I feel that my prayers have been heard. It's not going to be the same as it would have been last year. Things are different in many, many ways. Mom's familiar things are gone. It's going to be a challenge, but I'm going to do my best.