Author Topic: Dealing With Aging Parents  (Read 32349 times)

Offline David In Indy

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #40 on: July 29, 2007, 04:08:27 am »
I have no doubt that your mother visited you on that occasion, David.



Thank you Kerry!  :)

I also believe she visited me that day. And many times since, although she left me a feather only once on that particular day. Perhaps one feather should be sufficient. I still have it. I wrapped it in plastic and safely stored it in my scrapbook.  :)
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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #41 on: August 09, 2007, 08:02:13 am »
My mother lives in another town. My sister lives in another town to...slightly closer to my mothers town than I do.

Yesterday my mother was out for her morning walk and fell in the street. Her neighbors are all elderly but they went out and tried to help her but they couldn't get her up. She called my sister to come help her. and lay in the street until my sister drove from another town to help her! She wouldn't let them call her an ambulance. How stubborn is that? It is Texas in the summer.... >:(

Anyway, my sister and husband got there and got her up and into the car...drove her to Tyler (almost an hour away). She broke her left hand, her left kneecap, and her right foot. Can't walk at all. busted her nose...

So she is at my sister's house. (My sister is a nurse and can do all the testing and stuff that my mother needs ...she is diabetic and not being able to move around will cause her blood sugar to go haywire)

The doctor said to come back in two weeks, he thinks the kneecap wasn't dislocated so maybe she won't have to have surgery.

 :( :( :(

Offline Kelda

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #42 on: August 09, 2007, 09:50:29 am »
My mother lives in another town. My sister lives in another town to...slightly closer to my mothers town than I do.

Yesterday my mother was out for her morning walk and fell in the street. Her neighbors are all elderly but they went out and tried to help her but they couldn't get her up. She called my sister to come help her. and lay in the street until my sister drove from another town to help her! She wouldn't let them call her an ambulance. How stubborn is that? It is Texas in the summer.... >:(

Anyway, my sister and husband got there and got her up and into the car...drove her to Tyler (almost an hour away). She broke her left hand, her left kneecap, and her right foot. Can't walk at all. busted her nose...

So she is at my sister's house. (My sister is a nurse and can do all the testing and stuff that my mother needs ...she is diabetic and not being able to move around will cause her blood sugar to go haywire)

The doctor said to come back in two weeks, he thinks the kneecap wasn't dislocated so maybe she won't have to have surgery.

 :( :( :(

I read this in your blog. Poor Jess, i know how hard you find caring for her when she is well.
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Offline pettifogger

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #43 on: August 09, 2007, 10:02:45 am »
Wisdom Hard to Come By

by J. G. Fabiano

It was remarkably quiet on the beach the other day. This autumn's weather more than made up for the dismal days of the preceding summer. The quiet time on the beach was quite logical, because most of the tourists had long since evacuated the beautiful place we call home.

I was not alone though: all around me were men and women enjoying the same serenity I was in the process of enjoying. Having benches along the beach at Short Sands makes it especially special this time of year. All types of people take the time to sit and enjoy why we all came here to live.

I sat down next to an elderly gentleman whose white, ashen skin probably hadn't seen the sun in a long time. He looked frail and after I sat down next to him he almost appeared afraid. After a few moments it was obvious that I did make him feel uncomfortable because he leaned toward his side of the bench, as far away from me as possible. Maybe he was afraid of me. I decided to talk with this gentleman so I could at least try to calm him down. He wouldn't even look at me. He just stared straight ahead and in his mind's eye I am sure that I didn't even exist.

Why won't the old talk to us? Why is it so hard for them to explain their years of experiences to those of us who try not to make the mistakes, of those who lived before us? Why is it so difficult for them to look into our eyes and explain how they got to become so old? To paraphrase Harry Truman: "There is nothing new in this world. Only the times that are not remembered." We can't remember these times unless the people who lived through them will explain them to us!

As I was sitting on that bench, I remembered watching another elderly gentleman, over the past couple of decades or so. I saw how he respected and enjoyed what life had to offer. Into the summer he kept his yard and driveway immaculately clean and organized. It was obvious that he had come to realize that the more orderly his home, the more controlled his life appeared. All summer-long he never let the outgrowths beat him. Even when it looked foolish, and all his neighbors thought he was crazy, he still kept his yard perfectly ordered. It was as though he wanted to embarrass all of us, who did not have the tenacity to do the same.

When the summer was over, he replaced the lawn mower with a basket of broken bread. Every morning, without fail, he was seen feeding the seagulls that appeared before him. I have watched him do this for the past couple of decades. I have heard from others that they can't remember a year in which he had failed to do so.

Like with the man who was sitting next to me on the bench, I had worked up the courage to talk to my elderly neighbor. He became so uncomfortable when I approached. In fact, he looked as though he wanted to disappear into his perfectly-kept house. Even as I tried to smile my broadest smile, and act as friendly as I could, he still looked away from me. With all his might he tried, and succeeded, to ignore me.

Had this old man been so badly treated by those who were younger that he insisted on keeping his distance from all who approached him? Or was he afraid that I might think he was unnecessary because of his age? Don't the aged realize that they should be both admired and revered because of their years? Doesn't everyone realize what the old have to offer? Don't the old realize this?

 

Another elderly gentleman moved down the road from my house about the same time. He also developed his home into a neat and organized system for all to admire. In trying to be a good neighbor, I waved to him and smiled my friendliest smile. Like my experience with my other neighbor, I was ignored. He merely stared down at the ground praying that I would disappear. Because of my youthful insistence, I decided to try and force out a conversation with my new neighbor but he just looked right through me, and refused to listen to anything I was trying to say. I failed to communicate, and to this day he refuses to return any acknowledgments of friendship or concern.

Again I looked over at the elderly gentleman who was sitting beside me. I wanted to attempt another conversation but decided against it, as I didn't want to make him more uncomfortable than he already was. In years past, I wouldn't have bothered attempting to strike up any conversation with someone that old. I guess I was too interested in my success in society, instead of a success in life. This, more than any other reason, is why I yearn to communicate with those who have survived their years? I believe that if all of us would take the time to learn from the aged then we could learn to live a fuller life. A classic adage is that youth is wasted on the young. I pray that the wisdom of the elderly is not wasted and thus lost on the old.

That elderly gentleman finally decided that it was his time to leave but I sat there for a while contemplating nothing more important than myself. All of a sudden, a young man who rolled up to the bench, on his scooter, broke my self-induced trance. He sat down next to me and I made sure I gave him all the room he needed. I know he looked over at me a couple of times but I am sure I convinced him that I didn't notice. A few minutes later I decided that it was my time to leave and, as I walked back to my car, I again asked myself why won't the old talk to us?

 The End
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Offline Kerry

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #44 on: August 09, 2007, 10:14:14 am »
My mother lives in another town. My sister lives in another town to...slightly closer to my mothers town than I do.

Yesterday my mother was out for her morning walk and fell in the street. Her neighbors are all elderly but they went out and tried to help her but they couldn't get her up. She called my sister to come help her. and lay in the street until my sister drove from another town to help her! She wouldn't let them call her an ambulance. How stubborn is that? It is Texas in the summer.... >:(

Anyway, my sister and husband got there and got her up and into the car...drove her to Tyler (almost an hour away). She broke her left hand, her left kneecap, and her right foot. Can't walk at all. busted her nose...

So she is at my sister's house. (My sister is a nurse and can do all the testing and stuff that my mother needs ...she is diabetic and not being able to move around will cause her blood sugar to go haywire)

The doctor said to come back in two weeks, he thinks the kneecap wasn't dislocated so maybe she won't have to have surgery.

 :( :( :(

I was so saddened to read your news, Jess. You must be devastated.

Towards the end of my own dear Mum's life, she had a fall and broke her hip. It was a time in Australia when the orthopaedic surgeons were on strike, refusing to operate in public hospitals. Their ploy was to force people to obtain treatment in private hospitals, facilities which they often owned. So compassionate of them (not!).

Fortunately, Mum had private health insurance and had her hip replacement surgery in a private hospital.

There followed three months of rehabilitation in a large public hospital. The rehabilitation shouldn't have taken so long. Her recovery was delayed because she had another fall in the hospital whilst exercising. She broke her collar bone, which extended her hospitalization considerably.

I guess we've all got these sorts of things to look forward to, as we grow older and become more dependant on others. Ain't I a real little cheer-up committee!

I lived near my Mum and was always happy to visit and assist wherever I could. I sometimes wonder, though, who's going to look after me when I'm in my dotage. Guess I'll cross that bridge when I come to it, hunh.   
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Offline pettifogger

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #45 on: August 09, 2007, 10:17:05 am »
I am an aging parent who must be dealt with.  My greatest worry is becoming a burden to my children.  I know I am not as sharp as I use to be.  I am old cantankerous and stubborn and wrinkly and forgetful.  But I am still here.

When I am old and senile,
Stick me in a soft, faded chair in the sun
Where my tired eyes can see in the bright light.
Tuck me up in a blanket, and put in my
Trembling, thin and shaky hands an old favorite book
Well read in times of youth and middle age.
Then when I nod and sleep,
Or lose my place,
Or forget the meaning of a word or two,
Or find my eyes too weak to move on
It will not matter.
Old friends to dream of,
Memories of first acquaintance in the pages,
The places and times when I turned there for comfort
Will come and soothe the tired body
And enliven the soul.

That is why I am rereading now--
My neurons must write the paths of memory;
I am laying down treasures
For my fading age.

author unknown
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Offline Kelda

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #46 on: August 09, 2007, 10:50:51 am »
Pettifoger.

I like these two passages you quoted.

The first one especially. Isn't it funny how we say 'I'll never do that, or act like that, but in time, we do exactly the things we wondered about a few years before. I would say I'm quite a sociable person - so I hope I don't do the ignore thing too often & even in my old age will be a nosy old chatterbox!
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Offline Kerry

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #47 on: August 09, 2007, 07:31:09 pm »
I am an aging parent who must be dealt with.  My greatest worry is becoming a burden to my children.  I know I am not as sharp as I use to be.  I am old cantankerous and stubborn and wrinkly and forgetful.  But I am still here.

This is a favourite poem of mine. It reminds me of my dear Mummy and always brings a tear to my eye:

Cry from the Heart

What do you see nurses, what do you see?
Are you thinking when you are looking at me
A crabby old woman, not very wise,
Uncertain of habit, with faraway eyes.

Who dribbles her food and makes no reply?
When you say in a loud voice, I do wish youd try.
Who seems not to notice the thing that you do.
And forever is losing a stocking or shoe.

Who, unresisting or not lets you do as you will.
With bathing and feeding the long day to fill.
Is that what you are thinking, is that what you see?
Then open your eyes nurse, youre not looking at me.

Ill tell you who I am, as I sit here so still.
As I do your bidding, as I eat at your will.
Im a small child of ten, with a father and mother
Brothers and sisters who love one another.

A young girl of sixteen, with wings on her feet.
Dreaming that soon now, a lover shell meet.
A bride now twenty, my heart gives a leap.
Remembering the vows that I promised to keep.

At 25 now, I have young of my own.
Who need me to build a secure happy home.
A woman of 30, my young grow fast.
Bound to each other, with ties that should last.

At 40 my young sons have grown and are gone.
But my mans beside me, to see I dont mourn.
At 50, once more babies play round my knee.
Again we know children, my loved one and me.

Dark days are upon me, my husband is dead.
I look at the future, I shudder with dread.
For my young are all rearing young of their own.
And I think of the years and the love that Ive known.

Im an old woman now and nature is cruel
Tis her jest to make old age look like a fool.
The body it crumbles, grace and vigour depart.
There is now a stone where I once had a heart.

But inside this old carcass a young girl still dwells.
And now and again my battered heart swells.
I remember the joys, I remember the pain.
And Im loving and living life over again.

I think of the years all too few gone too fast.
And accept the stark fact, that nothing can last.
So open your eyes, nurse, open and see.
Not a crabby old woman. Look closer see ME.

Anonymous
believed to have been written by
an old lady in a geriatric ward
in a hospital in Bath, England

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #48 on: August 09, 2007, 07:54:09 pm »
I feel for my mother...and I feel for my sister and her kids. They are doing most of the day to day stuff for my mother. They say they don't mind and are being very good with her (one is thirteen and the other seventeen) But my sister hates for her house to be disrupted and her nerves will fray very soon. She is already saying she is exhausted and depressed. :-\

Right now my mother has a good attitude. But that could turn at any time...and I DO understand it is from pain and frustration. It is just hard to deal with is all.

I feel selfish for being so glad she is at my sisters and not at my house....and guilty...

Offline Shakesthecoffecan

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Re: Dealing With Aging Parents
« Reply #49 on: August 09, 2007, 08:58:41 pm »
My mother is 85 years old, and regressing. She is trying to remain a part of the active world, but sometimes she just does not think.

I will be busy as hell and she will call my cell, I let it go to voice mail, a minute later she is on the office phone. Why didn;t you answer your phone? Are you sick?

I want to tell her yes.
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