Today has been such a long day. It started out fine. Yesterday, I agreed to get up and walk with my husband when he took our dog for her morning constitutional today to the local nature trail in our town. I walked the same trail yesterday with a good friend in the morning. It was about a 5 mile trek. I need to gear up for an upcoming trip out west. It’s been hard to do that with all that has been going on with my mom’s health.
We got up a little late. But, I threw on some clothes had my light breakfast and requisite cup of tea and we were off. The trail was littered with leaves already. It is a beautiful place in our town. A creek runs adjacent to the trail for most of the trek that includes several iron bridges. Fungi are still permeating the ground and tree trunks as they find decomposing wood and other nourishment from rotting debris.
After arriving home, it was time for a POT of coffee as I researched nursing homes again. It was the second time in three weeks that I’ve been tasked with this unhappy research. Fortunately, we had some advice on how to do it when we had to undertake it the first time, and I was able to return to the same website to gather information that compared the long term care facilities.
This took a couple of hours, as I knew it would. Then, I called my Dad. He’s in New York. I live in Wisconsin. I reviewed what information I had gathered. Yesterday, he, my sister, and I were all on the same page about my mom needing to go to a nursing home after rehab. When I called him, I found that his opinion had changed on this. He was leaning toward bringing her home. Let me just say that I do not know how this will be possible.
I called the social worker assigned to her on the rehab unit. Cold at first, she warmed to my questions and answered me with increasing warmth. I understand. Families are often difficult in these situations, faced with the hard decisions to place loved ones in long term care facilities. My dad has vacillated between bringing my mom home because this is what she wants and placing her in another facility because this is what she needs. I believe everyone is frustrated.
My dad was granted permission to visit my mom in COVID-19 protective gear today as part of their compassionate care program. But, all this seemed to do was fuel his dissatisfaction with her care. It was the first time he’s been able to visit her in 10 days. He only knows of her therapy by what my mom is telling him. Mom has dementia. You can suppose the rest of the story.
I am 900 miles away from my parents. My sister is 70 miles away but is still very much involved in a time consuming career. I have been the go-between, the calming, resourceful presence, but I am nearing the end of my proverbial rope.
My Dad is not thinking straight. He just wants to satisfy my mom’s desire to come home. I do not think either of them is aware of what this will involve. I still believe my mom needs to be placed in a nursing home. This opinion is largely based on everyone’s need for safety and what is best in the long run.
I am supposed to call and complain tomorrow to the social worker on behalf of my Dad. I will not. Instead, I suggested that he go and spend the entire day with mom, be present during her therapy, and see how much help she needs getting to the bathroom and using her walker. I encouraged him to be calm and non-accusatory towards the staff. She is in a top rated facility for rehab. I have no reason to doubt the services they are providing her. Except that my mom says something different. Did I mention that she has dementia?
This has been just a very long day.
Today is Slice of Life Tuesday. TwoWritingTeachers.org created and hosts this weekly forum for educators and writers from all walks of life. I have participated since 2017. Thank you, TwoWritingTeachers.org for a wonderfully supportive space.