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Showing posts from January, 2011

Family Matters

My mother was discharged from the hospital to a local nursing home here in Manassas for 30+ days of recovery. She is just as demanding and thankless as ever when we speak on the phone and it is very difficult to hold my tongue and not unleash my anger on her. There is a lot of anger between us that I’m having trouble letting go of. This week Jon and I have to begin the process of closing down their apartment and putting things in storage until we know what Mom’s next transition will be (to a single apt in Manassas or to a long term nursing home situation). It’s been exactly one week since Dad came to live with us. What I’m learning is that he has bad days and he has good days. Today, is a good day. He woke up with a smile and asked me what we are going to do today. This is a big departure from his often sullen and withdrawn demeanor. His motor skills are a bit sharper this morning also. The big news with Dad is that after reviewing his medical records I have found out that he does

My Heart is an Arena

  Optimism takes a quick rest, unaware that the timer has started. Despair creeps up. A direct blow to the face and the fight breaks out! Optimism is quick to the feet in response.                "love your enemies"                                     “to hell with them all" "God is with us"                                     “screw him too" And so it continues.  Scratched, cut and bruised, in a front row seat, I'm soon wounded in their crossfire. I root for optimism. Hope shows up late to the scene, taking a seat next to me. Misery and hate jeer from across the grass. The score is tied at the half and nobody knows how this is going to go down.

Collapsing Community

I am too tired to string my thoughts on this matter into coherent paragraphs; please forgive the series of standalone statements. My mother has been the primary caregiver for my father over the past few years while his health as declined. We knew that eventually Dad would need to transition to a nursing home but it was always just that- an “eventually” thing. My parents are in the Medicaid gap. They make too much for medicaid qualification but not enough to pay the costs of long term care on their own. My mother went into the ICU on Tues, near death, from a sugar overdose (blood sugar = 750. 750!), leaving my father helpless. My mother will not be released for the hospital for several days and even when she is she can no longer care for Dad; she is too weak physically. He is incontinent, cannot bathe, dress, or feed himself any longer. A home healthcare agency is providing 24x7 custodial support in the home for Dad and has been since Tues. At $18/hr. My parents cash on h