Monday, April 27, 2009

Forcing Mom to settle in...

It's been several days since I was able to leave comments here; I was just too busy. Since my last post, I got Mom settled, talked her down after another distraught day; cleaned her house for my brother; made banking arrangements and bought many things she needs in her little apartment.

Mom's been in the assisted living facility for 11 days now and she sounds a bit better on the phone. We left her on Friday morning to spend time with some cousins and return to my home in Indiana for 2-3 weeks. It was very difficult to say good bye and leave her in the hands of others but it was necessary for her sake and mine. She must adjust and get acquainted and I need to get my own affairs back on track.

I need to get some paying work done and - most important of all - spend some quality time with my husband, Dan. He has been so loving and supportive; I could not have done this without him. I'd been at Mom's for two weeks trying to get things arranged when he arrived from Indiana. He spent three weeks there with me, organizing, fixing things at Moms, lifting new TVs, hanging pictures, moving furniture and mowing. He shopped with me and told me I was doing the right thing. When I feel the most guilty, he tells me it's necessary. "You would not allow a four year old to remain in an unsafe situation; this is very similar. Your mom is not able to be realistic so you must do it for her..." Intellectually I know this but he verbalizes it when others won't. He doesn't want to say anything harsh but knows just when I need to hear it.

As for Mom, her own phone seems to help a lot. She's placed a couple of calls and I've called Mom daily since it was turned on. She also began working with a physical therapist which gets her moving and gives her some company. Mom told me about a woman, Edith, who speaks to her at meals. Edith says hello but doesn't come early or stay late to chat. I hope Mom will invite her to her room for coffee and cookies or to sit in the sunshine; it could be just what both of them need! I just can't imagine just sitting there waiting for the next meal without trying to find something that makes me feel alive! I pray that Mom finds some motivation to get engaged and that she can pull some of these other residents along with her.