This has been a humdinger of a week already.....and it's only Tuesday! Sunday evening, we celebrated Grandson's and Granddaughter's birthdays. His was August 13th and hers was the 22nd. I might add that mine was the 12th and Spouse's was the 14th, and there was a new addition to the extended family born on August 20th - a beautiful little girl who has joined the ranks of the rest of us Leos. We pretty much have August covered birthday-wise.
We were invited to a pizza party for the grandkids and had a really nice time. Spouse had built a wooden bookshelf for each of them and we transported those to their home after the party. Both seemed very pleased with their Granddad's handiwork. They received many nice gifts and shared a delicious birthday cake, complete with candles and the happy birthday song. They did request we sing it only once though.
I spent much of Monday and today on the telephone with a dear friend, Janet, who lost her husband very suddenly on Sunday morning. She asked me to deliver a eulogy for her beloved at his service on Thursday and I have no idea what I'll say. I'd never been asked to speak at a funeral, though I've sung at some services. That should be interesting.
I also talked with another friend I hadn't heard from for years - she called me twice Monday and we talked for about an hour each time. I learned she and her spouse had been very upset with my spouse and me - for what, I hadn't any idea. I assumed our families had simply gone their own ways and that life took us down different paths. That's all I thought had happened. I tried to mend some fences even though I didn't feel we'd done anything wrong. My friend and I explored our feelings and then vowed to move on from there. I also received calls from two other people who inquired about the sudden passing of our mutual friend.
Last, but not least, I talked with representatives from the local dementia and Alzheimer's association. I had found their information online while searching for a support group. They offered advice on how to best deal with my mother, who doctors and therapists think should be in an assisted care facility. I think so too, but she is scheduled to be released from rehabilitation tonight and has been counting the hours until she could return to her home.
It's sad and difficult to be so torn between doing the safest thing for her, and doing what she wants, which is to live in her home at all costs. She is no longer able to understand how much pressure that will put on us, her daughters. She just wants to be home and she doesn't care how that happens, just so it does.
Some of my conversations yesterday and today revolved around how to get Mom into an assisted living situation before she was released to go home - the representative's idea, not necesarily mine or my sisters' on this particular day. I was urged to not allow her to go home, but to make sure she was taken straight to an assisted living community, even if I had to lie to her about it. While that might have been the best option safety-wise, it would have been emotionally devastating to my mother. She's already told people her daughters have turned against her, and she probably does feel that way. She's had so much to deal with already, but, we don't lie to her. We try to allow her to retain her dignity even when we know she doesn't understand some of the things we tell her. Most recently, her driving privileges were revoked and she blames me for that. It's odd she can remember those kinds of things, yet not remember to take her medications correctly.
I was told her situation had progressed to one in which her safety overrides her happiness. I'm not in denial about that at all. I'm just broken-hearted for her and about her. My sisters and I will give her a trial period at home on her own and see how she does. She doesn't know we're going to be evaluating her and that's best. I think each of us knows the next stroke will probably be worse than the last and then we will have to make that dreaded decision. It will change all of our lives and our relationships with our mother will never be the same. Actually, those relationships have already changed. We are now her "parents" and we have to do what's right for her, even if she doesn't understand.